The art scene in Cochrane is bursting at the seams these days, with a new gallery collective displaying the wares of talented local artists and artisans, as well as studios and workshops and a plethora of public art.
Start with a visit to the latest addition to the local arts community, Route 22 Artist Collective Gallery, which, as the name suggests, was created by a consortia of artists in Cochrane and area. Officially opened in mid-June, it’s a beautifully designed space with lots of natural light and an eclectic collection of multi-discipline pieces. The art here is juried meaning the collective weighs in on which pieces should be displayed. Every month there is an interchange (get it?) where the current display is completely replaced. This means you will have to come by at least once a month to see what’s new.
Then amble over to The Gentry Espresso & Wine Bar, a few doors down. And while you’re thinking about that special piece you may just have to go back and purchase, treat yourself to a delectable artisan coffee and a house-made treat. You’ll immediately notice how this place supports local artists, by the canvasses and photographs that adorn the walls.
From art to artisan
The art of making jewellery is in a class by itself. Stop by Peacock Jewellers at their new location in Historic Downtown and you may catch a master at work…or she’s running a workshop to show you how to create your own masterpieces at the Peacock Jewellers School and Student Centre.
Learn the art of pottery with the patient and knowledgeable teachers at Saffron Collective Studios. At the studio, they are passionate about teaching the art form of pottery and take great pride in helping others achieve creative success. Sign up for classes and see where our passion for pottery can take you!
A stroll around town will reveal a host of treasures. Bronze monuments created at the famed Studio West Foundry are pure eye candy. See the Legacy Statue in Centennial Plaza that commemorates the pioneer women of Cochrane, fondly known as the “chicken lady”. Inside the Cochrane Library, you’ll find two incredibly life-like bronze children with their books. The latest edition is a stunning piece installed at North Star Ford entitled “Early Calf,” depicting a cowboy on horseback with a newborn calf slung over the saddle in front of him, rescued from a late spring snowstorm. And it’s hard to miss the iconic cowboy on his horse overlooking the town and the river valley below.
Finish up at the Cochrane RancheHouse for the piece de resistance, a giant mural mosaic made up of individual tiles supplied by more than 200 local artists to depict how the west once was.
For more ideas, take a look at our article, Cochrane’s Self-Guided Art Tour.
Guest Journalist: Jane Usher