Absolutely Oystercatcher

2012

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I have studied Oystercatchers for many years. The opportunity to study them was one of the reasons I transferred from Jasper to Pacific Rim National Park. Like surfers, they are an abundent  year-round resident of this area.

Oystercatchers nest on the ground of small rocky offshore islets that characterize this part of the coast. I often find debris while I’m out studying them, so it's fitting to create an homage to the bird that brought me there. The inspiration for the piece came from the orange fuel spout and the black plastic flaps. I knew as soon as I found them that they were destined to go together.

I was also excited to find the old painted sign from Stubbs (Clayouqout) Island. The only words left on the sign are “Wildlife” and “Absolutely”, which captures the essence of the island perfectly. The sandal cutouts that form the wave-like image across the bottom of the piece were all found separately, so I was pretty excited to see how nicely they went together. One of the most enjoyable things about working with found objects is the serendipity moments when pieces fit together like they were always meant to be. There’s always a bit of magic there, you just have to open up to it.