June 5 - 26, 2021

The idea for the "Islands" show evolved out of three island locations that inspired me in 2019.

Off the west coast of British Columbia, the Salish Sea is home to the tiny Southern Gulf Islands, which are first and foremost in my mind, as this is where I call home.

A second Island inspiration came to me in the summer of 2019 when I visited Cottage Country for the very first time. Untouched by any ocean, yet so full of water with its myriad of lakes and islands within, these little jewels were such a contrast to the metropolis that is Toronto.

The third island location was the furthest away for me in both distance and mindset. A place I thought I'd never see, but had always been curious. Rugen Island, located just off the coast of Germany, surrounded by the Baltic Sea, is slightly larger than Salt Spring Island, where I live. I had the opportunity to visit in the Spring of 2019 and finally see the birthplace of one of my great-grandmothers.

At the end of 2019, after my visit to Cottage Country, planning for 'Islands 2021' began in earnest. Little did we all realize that a pandemic of epic proportion and consequence would change our lives forever. Islands began to take on another meaning.

With the lock downs and social distancing, we were all suddenly isolated on our own little
metaphorical islands-a personal reaffirmation and materialization of the theme of human alienation in cities, which I have explored in previous shows.

Although it would be impossible to ignore the terrible impact of the virus-hence the outliers such as my reinterpretation of Arnold Bocklin's Isle of the Dead as a reduction linocut, the colour arrangements that comprise most of the prints are meant to be uplifting and inspiring, an antidote to the emotional upheaval of the last year.

Richard York

March 2021

On Saturday, June 5th, Mira Godard Gallery was pleased to open "Islands" an exhibition of recent limited edition prints by RICHARD YORK.

RICHARD YORK was born in Delavan, Wisconsin in 1955 and raised in Sacramento, California. He moved to Salt Spring Island, British Columbia in 2009, becoming a Canadian citizen. While building his art studio on Salt Spring, he co-wrote a PBS documentary about the environmental history of California. The documentary "Becoming California" won 2 San Francisco Bay Area Emmy Awards in which Richard York and his writing partner both received Emmys for best documentary. 

An early interest in woodcuts led York to begin printing as a teenager and he has been printmaking for forty years. Richard York's keen appreciation and deep understanding of environmental issues informs and inspires his work. His small edition reduction woodcuts and linocuts, combining abstraction, texture and colour, reflect his interest in the uneasy and often tense boundaries between natural and man-made landscapes.

RICHARD YORK is represented exclusively by Mira Godard Gallery.

Installation Views
  • collage #1 by richard york
    Collage #1, 2019
    collage on paper
    19 3/4 x 14 3/4 in.
  • sunset go home lake by richard york
    Sunset, Go Home Lake, 2021
    original signed reduction woodcut
    15 x 23 1/4 in.
    ed. 5
  • island view by richard york
    Island View, 2020
    original signed reduction woodcut
    6 1/4 x 14 3/4 in.
    ed. 7
  • pier light, sassnitz by richard york
    Pier Light, Sassnitz, 2020
    original signed reduction woodcut
    15 x 23 3/8 in.
    ed. 8
  • return by richard york
    Return, 2020
    original signed woodcut
    18 x 23 1/4 in.
    ed. 10
  • shoreline, binz, rugen by richard york
    Shoreline, Binz, Rügen, 2020
    original signed reduction woodcut
    8 7/8 x 12 in.
    ed. 8
  • salish I by richard york
    Salish I, 2019
    original signed reduction woodcut
    14 x 10 in.
    ed. 7
  • salish II by richard york
    Salish II, 2019
    original signed reduction woodcut
    11 7/8 x 24 in.
    ed. 7
  • chalk cliffs, rügen by richard york
    Chalk Cliffs, Rügen, 2015
    original singed reduction woodcut
    7 1/4 x 11 in.
    ed. 8