A&E » Arts

Laura Harris is a homie at heart



Rich in colour and texture, exuding all the good things about family life – it’s no surprise Victoria artist Laura Harris’ works literally walk off the walls into homes around Whistler. Her showing for the month of April is her second at adele-campbell and one the gallery believes will be popular.

"We’ve only been showing her paintings for about a year but they do so well," said gallery staffer Mary Forseth. "I think it’s because her work has a really nice warm feeling to it. It’s not boring, it’s quite simple, it’s not offensive, it’s elegant and yet quite contemporary.

"She’s also a good price point which generally appeals to a younger clientele that may be more interested in decorating rather than collecting."

Layer after layer brings Harris’ paintings to life as she uses inventive techniques with pencil, ink and text hidden in acrylic backgrounds. If you stand back from one of her paintings, the first thing you’ll notice is her bold symbols of homes or flowers. But up close you’ll find poems, words and special messages that make you think, and smile. The extra, almost hidden meanings were something Harris stumbled on to one day.

"When I first started painting, I was just using graphics. I would get frustrated about not getting a message across. But once I was making a painting for my husband and started adding words and poetry and it gave my work a whole new reflection," she said.

"I didn’t realize it would be such a draw card though. I still get people a year later who’ve bought one of my paintings tell me that they only recently found a hidden word which really excites them. It’s funny."

Harris likes to label her pieces with positive, homie titles. Names like "A Secret Place," "Only Just Begun" and "Perfectly Lazy Saturdays" are the norm and a theme she said is intentional.

"People ask me, ‘this really can’t be your life?’ but it is. Nowadays anyway. I used to be a very busy career woman who longed for peace, and then when I turned to my art, I found it. I have a home, a new baby and even the little white house and so the titles of my work are meant to be memos that all of us can relate to. They are the magic moments and for me evoke strong emotions."

Catch Laura Harris’ work all month at the adele-campbell Fine Art Gallery, located in the Delta Whistler Resort.