Rhian Brynjolson is a visual artist, author, book illustrator, and art educator. When she’s not out taking photographs in hiking boots or snowshoes, you’ll find her painting in her studio at Falcon Lake. Rhian works in watercolour, acrylic, and oil paint.
Rhian says, “I fell in love with wild places. Windswept trees on high cliffs. Foxes skirting the forest edge. Wildflowers popping open in bursts of butter yellow, ivory lace, and blazing orange. A bright wood-duck in the cattails. Mushrooms growing in the forest duff. A young bear splashing in the shallows. The heart-stopping explosion of a grouse from the snow underfoot. The dip and splash of a canoe paddle, and the plop of a turtle into the lake.
“The author Annie Dillard wrote that when she was young, she used to hide pennies on the edge of the sidewalk for people to find. She could hardly contain her excitement at the idea of people noticing these unexpected gifts. Now, when she walks in the woods, or by a pond, she keeps her eyes open, hoping for “pennies”; those glimpses of something small, marvelous and unexpected.
“I go out searching for those small marvels and sketch them onto canvas.”
Rhian has worked as an instructor at the Winnipeg Art Gallery Studio Programs, as a visiting artist for the Manitoba Arts Council’s Artist in the Schools Program, an art specialist with Frontier School Division, and taught with the Winnipeg School Division for fifteen years, and was awarded Canadian Art Teacher of the Year in 2014. Rhian is the author of Teaching Art: a Complete Guide for the Classroom, and an illustrator of children’s books and videos for Sesame Street.
Her exhibitions have included River on the Run Artist Collective shows at the West End Cultural Centre and MHC Gallery; a solo show of book illustrations at the Manitoba Children’s Museum; and group shows at Graffiti Gallery, MHC Gallery, Oseredok, Transit Gallery, and the Manitoba Printmakers’ Association.
Rhian’s most recent exhibition, Mother Nature and Her Lovers: Repair and Maintenance, along with artists Sam Baardman and Bob Haverluck, featured work based on environmental themes.
Instagram: Rhian Brynjolson