Driving through southern Alberta last June, I stopped to use a public washroom. Another road that I’ve been over what seems like a hundred times in my life. Highway 2 the longest highway in the province. The highway splits into two roads in the town of Nanton. Each road has 2 lanes in one direction. The east side road going north, and west heading south. This image is from the west side road looking east. One of the few remaining phone booths still in service. The assumption of a world full of iPhones is somewhat a sad joke, but it grows.
Another roadside artifact that I've driven by many times. The sign and others like it brought back many memories of late nights ordering in and childhood holidays. Also even the effects of the morning after having food in the fridge to reheat for another day. Order in or take out? The take-home boxes of leftovers or doggy bags also come to mind. The sign itself is a leftover as the restaurant behind it was demolished long ago. It now sits on an empty lot full of weeds with an old concrete slab. The text on the sign is a throwback to another time, a near recent past still with us today.
Ties & Trees
While driving through the southern interior of British Columbia last summer I noticed an unusual type of machinery parked off the side of the highway. The day was overcast with light showers, and the result was that the colours in the landscape all seemed heightened. The machinery was a combination of an open top boxcar with what looked like an excavator grafted on top. I pulled over and trudged back through the wet grass, and took some photos. From what I'd gather, it was machinery for removing old railway ties. The old ties are stacked at certain points, then lifted up into the boxcars. The tags on the sides were a record of urban stops, now parked out in a forested mountain valley.
Another trip had me looking at a tree that extended over the road in a very sculptural way. The road was a sleeping secondary one out on Vancouver Island. It was a three way intersection that seemed almost forgotten. I explored a looser approach in painting this one.
I'll be showing some paintings this June in Calgary, Alberta. The show opens June 6th at the Midtowne Gallery. For those in the area I hope you can make it.