We had the good fortune of connecting with Gabryel Harrison and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Gabryel, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking
I invite risk. This is an action of necessity that one must take over and over again in the creative process. In the many years I have now spent making paintings, each time I am able to act with the courage to risk everything, to lose what I may be cherishing as my most favored mark or passage of the particular work, I give myself the opportunity to extend my vocabulary to push my boundaries and to make something that surprises me with its freshness, difference or newness. I trust that risk will be my guide in the journey towards making the unknown, known.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Overcoming self-doubt and self imposed limitations are the most difficult obstacles I have overcome and continue to work with. The path to actualize innate potential is an ongoing journey of discovery, much as is each work of art unfolds through hard work, commitment and experiment. I came slowly to the place of making paintings as a form of practice, to attentive making as a disciplined engagement with the world. I stayed true to the inner imperative that I use my hands and felt sense, to follow my curiosities rather than any other more rational choice of work in the world. Even though I trained as an art therapist and worked in the field for some years, I felt more true to myself in the studio than in the office. I continued to work hard at my art in off hours and eventually began to sell work. I would say that I have stayed true to what inspires me. I want to bring my gratitude for the beauty of the natural world, even as I grieve for its desecration. I try to bring to my paintings the feeling of the whole cycle of our mortality, the briefness of our journey here, the importance of paying attention.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I live in Vancouver, one of the most naturally beautiful cities in the world so i would have to walk with my friend. I would take them to Pacific Spirit National Park, Stanley Park, walk the seawall. There are many great brew pubs, we could wobble on our bikes through the Main St district on a sunny afternoon. Beatty biodiversity Museum. If we are able to gather again in groups, I would take them to a performance of the fantastic men’s choral group Chor Leoni, led by director Erick Lichte, afterwards a glass of wine at The Stable Bistro. I would love to show them the new campus of Arts Umbrella. This is the building for the organization led by Paul Laroque, housing many classes in dance and performing arts as well as visual arts, especially built for young people. Right now, nearing the Holiday Season, Wendy Williams Watt’s project the “Inclusion Tree”, is a wonderful initiative to be seen and to participate in all over the city. How about ending with the observatory at the Planetarium, viewing the night sky.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I have been fortunate in my life to have had many mentors, coaches and great people in my life to support and encourage me throughout the meandering course of my life. At a particular juncture in my life a dear friend and great artist, Sid Dickens, also an astute man of business, gave me an opportunity to develop my craft that led to the career in painting I now enjoy.

Website: https://www.gabryel.com
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/gabryelharrison/

Image Credits
Kimberly Dawn Christie

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