Artist Knows Her Place in Sidney gallery showcase

Sherley Gordon Edey brings art show to Tulista Park.

Sherley Gordon Edey’s work in Coleman

Sherley Gordon Edey is all about place.

Having lived in many places around Canada, she moved to Sidney and asked herself, ‘what do I make of where I am?’ This is something that inspired her show, Know Your Place, which will take place next week.

“Some people tell me that they can … wherever they are, (call it) home and to a certain extent, yes, I agree with that but what is distinctive, what is it that we ought to admire about where we live… here in Sidney?” she asked.

Originally from Alberta, she and her husband have lived in western Canada most of their lives and so Edey has a large fascination with it. She began learning photography before moving to Coleman, Alberta, where she developed an interest in the buildings and lifestyle.

“I would just walk and walk and walk and take photographs,” she said.

Thousands of photos later, she had her first small art show with those Coleman photographs in Calgary. After moving to Sidney, she decided she wanted to get better and take her art up a notch and began deciding what she really wants her art to be about.

“I really am interested in our everyday lives and how those decisions we make in every day lives kind of match the environment that we’re in,” she said.

Edey added she is very conscious of the land we live on, but that doesn’t inspire her to take beautiful shots of say sunsets or landscapes.

“I’m more interested in how it’s all turning out,” she said. “Have we ever transformed this place and continued to; tear this down, build this up, oh small house gone, three very large ones in its place. So that interests me; how people transform what I think is quite a gift; the land that we’re allowed to live on.”

So how did this artist pay attention to her surroundings when moving to Sidney?

She walked and walked and snapped pictures.

“One of the projects for this art show Know Your place, is in January, I walked every street of Sidney,” she said.

Using her GPS to track all of the patterns, her work fell into 16 neighbourhoods. This will be one of her displays shown in the Know Your Place Art Show. She didn’t put street names, as she said she tried to make the familiar strange, adding 16 names that she’s given to each neighbourhood she saw in her mind.

“What I chose was plants, shrubs … that were significant to first nations people.”

The show came out of the idea, ‘Do I know my place here? It will see seven different artists, all who relate their ideas to place in different art forms — carving, quilting, baskets, fibre and more. Edey will also have other works on display.

Know Your Place will take place April 11 to the 17, Monday to Friday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 12 to 4 p.m. at the Community Arts Centre at Tulista Park.