Letter rip

Did the Happy New Year greeting on page A1 of today's Times Colonist catch your eye?

The Island Illustrators, the Victoria group behind it, are showing the original 12 pieces in its 25th annual New Year's show. The letters spelling Happy New Year will be on display at the Juan de Fuca branch of the Greater Victoria Public Library from Jan. 4 to 31. The illustrators were contacted by the library last summer to create a themed display and the Happy New Year idea was born.

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Island Illustrators member and spokeswoman Kristi Bridgeman said the group's members enjoyed the Happy New Year project so much that they decided to expand their creative bounds from A to Z.

The group's new Travelling Illustrated Alphabet show (each letter is shown on this page) will follow in February, featuring 26 letters by 21 artists. The library has confirmed it will host the exhibit in at least three of its branches, including the central branch, Bridgeman said.

"It's what we illustrators are made of - working within parameters is something that we have a knack for," Bridgeman said. "As illustrators, themed shows are a fun challenge for us."

Submissions for the alphabet project range from scratchboard to sculpture, collages to digital art. They are unified by a "Canadian nature" theme.

The artists involved in the alphabet project are: Suzanne DeStaffany, Wendy Picken, Judy Hilgemann, Beth Dunlop, Joanne Thomson, Mark Nightingale, Karel Doruyter, Kristi Bridgeman, Olga Lang, Robin Hall, Bryony Wynne-Jones, Dawn Joy Ritchie, Ian Finlayson, Jessica Milne, Dianne Bersea, Kathy Cameron, Marcia Semenoff, Iris Churcher, Allegra Vernon, Haren Vakil and Karen Hateley.

asmart@timescolonist.com

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