Tina Bafaro with a piece she was working on in her home studio.

Tina Bafaro with a piece she was working on in her home studio.

Tina Bafaro ready for first local art show after 30 years away

Tina Bafaro’s show opens at Begbie Studios at 721 4th St. East on Saturday, May 5, at 7 p.m.

Tina Bafaro has found one big challenge when creating her art work since moving back to Revelstoke from Edmonton – the comparative lack of light.

“I’ve found it a challenge since I moved here. I find the light is different,” she told me. “I think it’s just my psyche. Just to have that brightness, I feel more energized and that shows in my painting.”

That surprised me, because the work I saw in Bafaro’s home studio was all very bright and filled with vivid colours. I was interested in meeting her after seeing one of her works at the Revelstoke Visual Art Centre last month. Titled Evolution, it depicted a woman’s face growing emerging from a tree. One of the eyes was replaced with an orb, with a mountain reflected in it.

Bafaro was born and raised in Revelstoke until, at the age of 18, she moved to Kelowna for art school where she majored in sculpture. After that, she lived in Edmonton for 30 years before returning to her hometown last July. In Edmonton she took part in many group shows and had one solo show in 2007.

This Saturday, May 5, she will have her first solo show in her hometown at Tina Lindegaard’s Begbie Studios.

Art is something she has been in to since she was little. She said she was always doodling, “taking images from the Sears catalogue and transforming them.”

“It’s almost something that I need to be happy,” she said. “I get really grumpy if I don’t create, if I’m not creative in some way. I guess painting is gratifying because it’s so colourful and can transport you somewhere.”

Bafaro works from home and she recently moved her studio from the greenhouse to the kitchen because she started using the former as a tomato garden. She told me she liked to work with organic shapes and then go from there.

“From that shape it just becomes something that you can identify and I just work on that section to bring the object out,” she said. “I don’t know ever know where I’m going with my paintings.”

On her easel was a painting with flowing, circular forms that evoked both waves and mountains. An orb dominated the centre. She said it started with a bird-like image in one corner and then evolved from there.

“I had just got back from Mexico so the beachballs, the stripes in the towel all influence what’s on there.”

Over the years she has found that she is less particular about her paintings and more willing to accept mistakes. “I think to be creative you have to let go and be willing to make mistakes.”

Tina Bafaro’s show opens at Begbie Studios at 721 4th St. East on Saturday, May 5, at 7 p.m.