NEWS - 2022
All text, photography and artwork is COPYRIGHT by GARY SIM unless noted otherwise.
AUG. 2: GALLERIES WEST REVIEW OF BC ARTISTS PROJECT
Partial screen capture
GALLERIES WEST ARTICLE ON
BC ARTISTS PROJECT
In mid-July I met writer Janet Nicol for the first time. I had gone to visit artist and friend Pnina Granirer
at a book signing event for her new book of poetry GARDEN OF WORDS, published by Granville Island
Publishing, and Janet came by to say hello to Pnina. Janet and I started talking, and the
subject of my BC Artists project arose. She proposed to write an article about it, and Galleries West
accepted the proposal. Janet came by my studio for a one-hour interview, and left about four hours later.
The article was posted on August 2. Thanks are due to Janet, and to Galleries West Editor Portia Priegert
for publishing the article. Special thanks are also due to my friend Charles Christie Hill, Curator Emeritus
at the National Gallery of Canada in Ottawa, for his comments in the article. Janet has
written hundreds of articles, and in 2019 wrote ON THE CURVE - The
Life and Art of Sybil Andrews, published by Caitlin Press, Halfmoon Bay, BC. It turned out that Janet
and I also have a common interest in the VANTECH school annual, as well as in
L.A. Elliott, who taught the printing and linoleum cutting course at
the Vancouver Technical School High School on East Broadway.
JULY 31: NEW LINOCUT PRINTS AVAILABLE
Heron, Lost Lagoon and Fragment
Trying to keep busy during these long summer days, a few new linocut prints are
being cut and editioned, including a print of a heron in Stanley Park and an abstract.
Another print, Bald Eagle, Masset has gone through 3 trial proofs,
and the 4th trial proof is ready to be pulled.
JUNE 16: ALCUIN ZOOM LECTURE RECORDED
Link to YouTube video of the lecture and following question & answer session:
MAY 24: GARY SIM TO GIVE ALCUIN ZOOM LECTURE
The Alcuin Society presents a talk by Gary Sim:
OUT OF PRINT - Looking for BC artist publications - a 25 year quest
Zoom online talk June 16 2022 at 6:00 PST
MAY 14: CONDE LANDALE 1948 - 2022
Conde Landale 2003, reading at the kitchen table, Savary cottage
Lounging on the cottage deck
Here is a link to his online obituary, posted by his daughter Audrey:
I found out by email that my good friend Conde Landale passed away on May 14 in Maple
Ridge Hospital, after losing a fight with cancer. I had no idea that he was sick, so
the news was quite a shock to me. Only a few weeks prior to that we were
emailing back and forth about going up to Savary Island at the end of the summer.
I first met Conde in 2002, after he phoned me out of the blue to ask "are you the Gary
Sim who wrote Looking For Maud ... ?" That was a surprise, as that book has yet
to be published. It turned out that he had received a large collection of
information on Savary Island from Gladys Bloomfield, who had been working on a book about
the island. She was unable to complete the work, and her research material was passed on
to the Savary Island Heritage Society with the agreement that they would complete the book
and publish it. They did so, and published MAGNETIC ISLE - Gladys Bloomfield's Savary
in 2005; ISBN 0-9739209-0-4; 146 pages, illustrated in black and white. I had contacted Gladys
some time earlier, and by way of thanks for her help gave her a working draft of Looking For
Maud, which is what Conde was asking about.
Conde's 2-wheeled tote carrier, and a very late arrival at Savary by chartered water taxi
Posing with glacial erratic, south shore
I eventually drove out to Whonnock to meet him, and we got along quite well. I didn't know
that the Sherman family was well connected to Savary Island, so I learned a lot about that,
and Conde learned about my research into the family. The next year Conde and I went to
Savary Island together, where I saw the Sherman family cottage Traumerei, found
the sign for Sherman Walk, and toured the locations where I owned paintings of
Savary Island by Maud Sherman.
Although Conde was a fairly private person, I eventually found out that he received a PhD
in 1987 from the University of Miami, his Dissertation was titled Purification And Characterization
Of An Alpha-1,6 Glucan-Binding Protein From Streptococcus Sobrinus, which is a mouthful.
He had also been a fisherman and a tugboat captain, the Whonnock wharfinger, a landlord, and President
of the Savary Island Heritage Society for many years. He was an ardent historian and
researcher, with a keen eye for details and family histories. He drove like a madman when he was
heading for the next ferry or water taxi, and wouldn't stop until he was in the lineup. We continued to share
research information for twenty years, and got together occasionally for beer and burgers, exchanging
emails and phone calls in between (Whonnock and the West End of Vancouver are separated by a lot
of inter-urban driving).
My favorite hamburger story is from having lunch with Conde at Bierecraft on Cambie. We both ordered a
burger, and the menu listed lots of optional additions like extra pattie, fried egg, bacon, tomato
slice, pickle, avocado,
cheese, hot peppers, weiner, lettuce, onion rings, and so on. When the server asked if Conde wanted
any extras, he reviewed the list and said that he'd like to add all of them! (he was already having
a deluxe bacon cheeseburger). The server was impressed, especially when he realized that
Conde wasn't kidding. At first I thought he was kidding. Some time later I saw the door to the
kitchen open, and our server came out carefully carrying Conde's burger ... it was at least 10 inches
high, barely held together with long wood skewers. The cooks stuck their head out the pass to see how it
was received. It looked awesome, and Conde slowly and methodically (and happily) ate the entire burger.
It was like breakfast, lunch and dinner all at once.
I will miss you a lot, old friend. Farewell and safe journey.
Scrambling around Mace Point
Near First Point
MAY 1: MOSKVA FISHBOWL AERATOR
Original pen & ink drawing by Gary Sim
I had another idea about the sunken rus cruiser Moskva. The Krimeline
Spokesliar Dimfry Pisskopf stated that the ship sunk in a storm, but
photographs of the ship after the attack showed the ocean to be as calm as
the water in a goldfish bowl. So, here it is at the bottom of a blue-and-goldfish
bowl. I'm thinking of doing another cartoon showing a box of cereal called "CRISPY
CRUISER" ... guaranteed to sink in your cereal bowl ... every bite a victory ...Slava Ukraini!
APRIL 19: EASTER TRADITIONS COMPARED
Original pen & ink drawing by Gary Sim
I had this idea on the Easter weekend, but only finished it today. The orc egg
is cracked, of course, and 13 executed civilians have poured out of it, marking
100 years of communist progress. None. How would you like your orc egg? Bombed,
rocketed, missiled, nuked or just shot and burned? A side order of iodine to go?
APRIL 15: MOSKVA SISTER SHIP AT VANCOUVER
The Varyag visiting Vancouver harbour, photo Gary Sim
The Varyag is the sister ship to the Moskva, which sunk yesterday
in the Black Sea after an apparent Ukrainian missile attack. The Varyag is seen here
in Vancouver harbour in November 2011, approaching the pier at Canada Place for a
"courtesy visit" (probably combined with some spying). Its crew has "lined the rails" as a
formality, but they also help give a sense of the size of the ship. I took this photo
from the 9th floor of 1500 West Georgia.
APRIL 3: SPRING COLOURS AT LOST LAGOON
Colours of the Ukrainian national flag expressed in flowers and blue sky
FEB. 26: THE INVASION OF THE UKRAINE BY RUSSIA
The Ukrainian national flag
Along with many others in the world, I watched the russian military buildup around the
Ukraine with apprehension. With their sudden and merciless invasion this past week it is
now obvious that the russian leaders are still as primitive and paranoid as Stalin
used to be. Best wishes to all Ukrainians for a successful defence of your country
against this illegal, naked aggression. Hopefully underpant poisoner putin will learn
a lesson that he won't forget. It wouldn't hurt to send a few cruise missiles to the Kremlin
just so that they can share some of the destruction, and let the people of
russia see what is actually going on.
FEB. 19: MORE ROAD DE-ENGINEERING INSANITY
The intersection at Haro and Jervis, completely screwed. See any bicyclists?
Questions: is the little bicyling slot on the left one way or two way?
What route should a bicyclist take through this idiotic maze? Do we need even more signage???
One almost has to admire the City of Vancouver de-engineering department for devoting
100% of their time to making the roads of Vancouver impassible. For the past 120 years
this quiet intersection in the West End has been a 4-way courtesy corner, yield to traffic
on the right. Not any more. Haro Street is now blocked off as one-way on both sides of the
intersection. A driver coming up Jervis from the south of Haro not only has to
stop at a new stop sign, but also has to keep going straight, even if
they are just picking up Grandpa at Haro Park Lodge a half block away. It's also
become a control signage festival, 10 visible, 4 not: new stop signs and warning signs on both sides of
Jervis, then a complete infestation of one-way, do not enter, bicycles here, and look out
for this needless and stupid curb in the middle of the road (on each end of each curb).
They've also enlarged the curbs, deleting as many parking locations as possible.
The city workers who clean leaves off the streets are supposedly at war with the jerks
putting in all these curbs. The uncleaned leaves from last fall are still evident in
the tiny little passageway on the left allotted for the thousands of bicycles swarming through here
continuously. Or at least 1 or 2 a day. You can see the same thing in the photo below, taken
one block away. The leaf cleaning trucks are too wide to go
down the bike slot. The drivers won't get out and shovel. Duh. Guess we need to spend a few
million needless dollars on tinier leaf cleaning trucks. Maybe we can make the hordes of
bicyclists do it, if only for their own safety. Or encourage them to sue the city if they
slip and fall on gooey wet leaves.
UPDATE: yes, the city has pissed away money on narrower street cleaners, one went down
Barclay Street last week, probably because they couldn't get through anywhere else. It is
still not narrow enough to solve the problem noted above.
The intersection at Haro and Bute, completely screwed. See any bicyclists?
Maple Tree Square, completely screwed
LET'S NOT FORGET THAT THIS IS HAPPENING ALL OVER TOWN ! ! ! Here's a photo from Gastown
on Feb. 18 2022. It's basically a typical intersection of two streets crossing, but in
this case Alexander comes in from the northeast making it a 5-way corner. It's always
been a bit of a challenge getting through Gastown, but in the old days a high-speed bicycle
"gran prix" went through here. The city de-engineers have done their
best to make it harder for anyone to get through. The road and sidewalk here are now crap.
Historical note: the statue of Gassy Jack Deighton, recently destroyed by a mob of angry indians during
a march for "respect" ... stood for half a century on the plinth just visible in the middle distance between the
the new "no left turn" sign and the VPD "accident response" vehicle.
Alexander Street on the right used to be 2-way, now it's just one way accessed only from the square,
which simply increases the traffic in this location.
I'm sure delivery drivers forced to navigate the hairpin corner (with obstacles) aren't happy,
especially since they previously would have simply accessed that block directly from Main Street.
Nor are they happy being stuck in bumper to bumper traffic on a road they don't want to be on.
The road in and out of the intersection used to be 2 lanes, now it's just one. Definitely no more
parking! Abbott Street on the left was 2-way, you could turn left here for the past 140 years if
you wanted. Now it's completely closed off, you now have no choice but to keep going. On a quiet Friday
afternoon, all of the drivers and passengers in view have been constrained from 8 lanes of traffic
into 3. It's now needlessly bumper to bumper, just because 62.5% of the driving lanes are gone.
Nice work, de-engineers. I think these dimwits are incapable of thinking about more than one
lane at a time.
FEB. 10: BALD EAGLES
Bald eagles, Stanley Park, February 2022
Now that the man-eating packs of coyotes are gone from the park, I was bold enough to
extend my walk around Lost Lagoon into the forest. A large bird of prey flew over while I
happened to be looking up at the trees. Immediately afterwards, there was a real bird
ruckus. I recorded some of the bird cries, but it took me a while to locate the source:
2 bald eagles way up in a tree. The bird that flew over first wasn't an eagle, possibly an
owl or hawk, so it seemed like the eagles were perhaps defending their nest. Video with
sound as below (no birds visible, just trees and bird sounds):
FEB. 10: GREAT BLUE HERON
Blue Heron, Lost Lagoon, February 2022
I went for a walk down to Stanley Park and Lost Lagoon. On the way back I noticed this
heron had landed on a partly submerged log, and was perhaps waiting for breakfast to
swim by. It was tricky to photograph, and it kept looking the other way as if I wouldn't
notice it. There was almost no wind, and I kept trying to
get a decent photograph of it mirrored in the water.
JAN. 21: ROBERT RUSSELL REID 1927 - 2022
Bob at Ferry Building Gallery booklaunch for Harry & Jessie Webb, June 2014
A friend advised me by email that Robert Reid
passed away Jan. 21 at his home
in Vancouver, by assisted dying in his 94th year. Thus passed a truly
legendary book designer and typographer, and a kind and generous man of many
interests. The Alcuin Society's Robert Reid
Award is just one sign of his stature. His career in printing spanned more
than 70 years, from the 1940s through to the 2020s, from Vancouver to Toronto
to New York, and back again. He was involved in
many important publications over the years, including the 1958
B.C. Centennial Anthology.
Even the most acerbic bookseller "ever to work in Western Canada" respected Bob.
"This is ... a fine copy of Reid's first handprinted pamphlet. It displays many
of the qualities of typographic imagination and experimentation that would make
him the most important typographer ever to work in Western Canada."|
#282. Reid (Robert R.) The 19th Hole. First Shot. Vancouver. Mashie-Niblick Press 1948
"Without Robert R. Reid's collaboration there is no doubt it would not have been
attempted. Throughout these three issues his contribution as a designer
almost shouts from the pages."
#283. Reid. :p.m. magazine. Vancouver. 1951.
From STIGMA, List 80, Canadian Literature, William Hoffar, Bookseller, 1992
Samples of Reid's work from the 1950s.
Click images for info.
JAN. 16: A WALK TO ENGLISH BAY
I finally went over to English Bay this morning, for exercise, and to take
photos of some public art that I wanted more images of. I found the Lionel
Thomas sculpture by accident, while looking for a view from Beach Towers plaza
(my apologies for trespassing, I usually try hard not to).
For the first time I saw the "barge chilling" in person, it actually looks
quite big. They've tried to get it off without luck, maybe it needs to be
cut into pieces. Perhaps blasted into smithereens.
This was also the first
time that I saw how the City has butchered Pacific in half, with an oversized
bike road taking up 2 of 4 lanes, the other two lanes (here, but only one west of Denman)
still available for drivers and passengers to use. One lane each way, no parking
anywhere. So much for taking the old folks down to watch the sunset. There's
a continuous concrete divider between the drivers and riders,
visible lower left in the barge photo. How ecologically sensitive! Concrete,
asphalt, all the work crews with their jimmies, dump trucks, backhoes, what
could be greener?
The parking lot below the
road is now useless for parking, it can't be accessed, so they've put some picnic
tables on it to make it look like they thought it through (visible in the distance
in the middle photo below, empty of course). And they cut the heads off
the parking meters that used to earn money for the City. Cool hand luke! I lost
track of how many potholes in the road I had to dodge on my walk, or broken sidewalks to navigate,
or how many painted white lines at stop signs just aren't there any more ... the
City has better things to do ... the war on automobiles!!!
Some of today's pictures: sculptures by Charles Marega, Lionel Thomas, Gerhard Class.
Click images for info.
JAN. 10: BC ARTISTS UPDATES
Images added to BC Artists so far in 2022
It seems there is always something to add to BC Artists.
I have been going through digital and film photographs that I have taken in the past few
decades, which has
unearthed a number of interesting images, mostly of public art projects and architecture.
Of the 38 images shown here, 30 are Sim photographs. I know that I have many more
taken around 2000, when I was on the Vancouver Public Art Committee. I went on tours
of numerous public art projects throughout the city, and took a lot of 35mm colour
photographs. So far, they have never been displayed or published.
JAN. 9: A NEW YEAR BEGINS
Lost Lagoon in Winter
Best wishes to everyone for the new year. Hopefully the rain storms and forest
fires are less destructive this year than last year, and the
pandemic will not become worse with a new and more deadly variant. We had a
heavy snowfall the night of December 29, and the morning of the 30th dawned
clear and sunny, so I went on a walk to the seawall and Stanley Park. It was
very scenic, and the powder snow was fun to walk in.
JAN. 8: AIRPLANE PHOTOGRAPHS THROUGH THE YEARS
I noted the addition of this page in December 2021, but since then I have added a lot
more photographs and information. The web page still needs some more work, I will
probably put the photos into chronological or thematic order (float planes,
helicopters, fire fighters, jets), more or less.
JAN. 1: SEASONAL GREETING 2021