Surrey artist Jarnail Singh’s work is being showcased at North Delta’s George Mackie Library.
Singh’s art is being featured through to the end of April as part of “Art @ the Library,” a space dedicated to showcasing works that reflect the diverse cultural interests of the city and its neighbourhoods.
Singh is an internationally-renowned artist who was recognized by the City of Surrey as a Surrey Civic Treasure in 2008. He was also the first artist featured when the Art @ the Library initiative was launched in 2018.
An artist since he was a child, Singh grew up under his father’s tutelage in the Punjab region of India. But while his father’s focus was scenes from Sikh history, Singh found inspiration in the social and cultural history of the Punjabi people, “how they used to live, their lifestyles and customs and traditions.”
“Life is changing very fast,” he told the Reporter in 2018. “Our old lifestyle, it’s changing. So I just wanted to record our old lifestyle and customs and tradition of Punjabi people for the coming generations.”
Since immigrating to Canada in 2000, Singh’s art has taken on a new subject: the natural beauty and landscape of British Columbia.
“Painting for me is a process of infinite happiness and joy. It is impossible to describe this process. There is a mixture of feelings, imagination, craft, and many more elements that cannot be defined or explained. Painting for me is meditation. Painting for me is prayer,” reads an artist’s statement accompanying Singh’s showing.
“I paint whatever inspires or touches me. It can be a tiny flower, an awe-inspiring mountain or a stream. It can be a face in a crowd that impresses me with its beauty and innocence, or it can be a story of ancient times; they are all part of my paintings. People often ask me what I paint, and I reply, ‘I paint everything; people, portraits, landscapes — anything that touches me, inspires me. Painting is my interpretation of these.”
For more information about Jarnail Singh and his art, visit jarnailarts.wordpress.com/jarnail-singh.
The Art @ the Library space the Mackie is booked for 2022, but Ladner Pioneer Library still has opportunities for artists to display their work. Interested parties can contact Nimisha at 604-946-6215.
— with files from Grace Kennedy