Exhibit celebrates the many mediums of Metchosin artist

The late Christiaan Van de Water was a man of multiple creative talents

Christiaan Van de Water (1914-1996) was an artist of many creative talents

Christiaan Van de Water’s original artwork will soon be on display, thanks to the efforts of his children and the Metchosin Community House.

The Holland-born artist (1914-1996) accumulated a vast collection of oil paintings, sculptures, handmade furniture and more over his lifetime of artistry.

Many of those unique pieces will be showcased this weekend in an exhibit playfully called “The Old Man’s Art Show.”

Van de Water’s talents emerged early in life when he illustrated his primary school textbooks with crayon sketches of fish and wildlife. That passion for creating stayed with him as he grew older, but increasing responsibilities led him to train formally as a woodworker, and eventually become a union carpenter in Victoria.

He brought his family to Metchosin in 1955, seeking a quieter, simpler life of farming and creative pursuits. They stayed four years, making a living from the farm, while Van de Water supplemented his income by playing with Victoria’s top dance band, The Bert Zala Orchestra.

The family was doing well until disaster struck and they lost the bulk of their sheep to a pack of dogs. In the face of defeat, Van de Water moved his family to a farm in southern Ontario to try his hand at farming there, but a string of harsh luck kept the dream of self-sustainability at bay. He finally abandoned the land for a return to Vancouver Island.

Van de Water began painting in earnest after the move back to the Island and found his voice on canvas. “(As a painter), as well as striving to find your palette, you have to find out how you want to express yourself,” says his son, Chris Van de Water, 67 and a Metchosin resident since 1978.

“(My father) ended up doing landscapes and some portraits, and it slowly morphed into some of his more philosophical paintings.”

The exhibit will feature between 30 and 40 original pieces by Van de Water, ranging from oil paintings to folk style hand-crafted furniture, showcasing the wide range of mediums he used. Chris says it’s a chance for his family to reconnect and ensure their father’s talent is preserved. “We’re going to get all the pieces together and get a (photo) and make an album for posterity’s sake.”

The event runs Dec. 6 and 7 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. at the Metchosin Community House, 4430 Happy Valley Rd.

acowan@goldstreamgazette.com

Just Posted

Two VicPD officers injured during mental health arrest

The officers sustained non-life-threatening injuries early Sunday morning

Saanich man escapes being run down by own truck

The man was working on his truck in the 800 block of Darwin Avenue, when it started to roll on him

Traffic lights out on Highway 1 at McKenzie

Major delays are expected for the morning on the Trans-Canada Highway

Cash for butts program giving away $1,500 to Victoria cigarette butt-collectors

Organizer hopes to raise awareness of microplastics and cigarette butt pollution

‘Bad choices make good stories’: Margaret Trudeau brings her show to Just for Laughs

Trudeau says over the decades she has been suicidal, manic, depressed

Too much time on social media can hurt teens’ mental health: study

Researchers conducted a four-year survey of more than 3,800 adolescents between Grades 7 and 11

Advocates want charges in horse deaths during Calgary Stampede chuckwagon races

Chuckwagon races are a nightly spectacle during the Stampede, a 10-day annual celebration of western life

ICBC insurance renewals get more complicated this year

Crash history, driver risk prompt more reporting requirements

Diversity a Canadian strength, Trudeau says of Trump tweets at congresswomen

Trudeau avoided using Trump’s name when he was asked about the president’s Twitter comments

B.C. couple bring son home from Nigeria after long adoption delay

Kim and Clark Moran of Abbotsford spent almost a year waiting to finalize adoption of Ayo, 3

Cumberland memorial ride set for deceased Island mountain biker

A memorial ride is set for Tuesday evening for the mountain biker who died in the trails last week.

Most Read