Kimberly Miller: Rainshadow

January 15 – february 24, 2019

rain shad-ow   noun

The relatively dry area on the leeward side of high ground in the path of rain-bearing winds.

A sense of home.

This group of paintings is inspired by the setting that means the most to me:  home .  I live where the farmland meets the forest and the salmon streams meet the mighty Englishman River.  Evidence of the giant old growth forest still exists in this area, where settlers long ago recognized the agricultural possibilities of a life nestled in the gentle shelter of Mount Arrowsmith.  We strive to live in much the same way today.  I find overwhelming inspiration in the simple pleasures of daily life, and I see tremendous beauty in the tending of food crops, fruit and flowers, the song of birds, the constant music of the river, and the wild things at my doorstep as they change with the seasons.

A sense of place.

Mount Arrowsmith is known as Kuth-Kah-Chulth, that which has sharp pointed faces, to the Hupacasath First Nation, and there are few places in our region where those striking faces are not visible, providing a stunning backdrop to the forests and fields.  They also provide so much more.  Located in the Mount Arrowsmith Biosphere Region, a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, the watersheds that originate in the mountain’s high peaks connect with the ocean to create a vital network of biodiversity that thousands of species rely upon… including ourselves.  Our local microclimate is influenced by Arrowsmith, every plant and animal relies on her, and all of our water flows from her shoulders. This unique ecosystem defines life in this region, where we all live together downstream.

It is powerful but it is vulnerable.  It is resilient but it is fragile.

These truths are both the river that winds through these particular paintings and the source of their inspiration.  Spending many hours observing nature, I contemplate the many implications of our human interactions within it as I paint.  It is a deeply valuable and fulfilling experience.

A sense of responsibility.

While they are only a small handful of her many faces, these painting represent the countless ways that we are connected to the natural world around us, and also to all of the many other living systems with which we share it.