Local artists are trotting out their latest creations - life-sized horse sculptures they've painted for a new exhibit at Willowbrook Shopping Centre.
Eight such sculptures are on view as part of the "Horsing Around Langley" show, at the mall starting Monday, Jan. 14.
Surrey-based artists Marilyn Dryer Siedel and Glenda Mantle painted horses for the exhibit, part of a year-long initiative launched by Langley Arts Council.
Mantle painted two of the horses at her home studio, in the Chimney Heights area of Newton.
"I was given the horses in September and they're finally ready," Mantle said with a laugh.
"I was the only artist who did two of the horses, so maybe that's why it took me a littler longer to get the work done."
Mantle is familiar with such projects. During a Surrey-wide project in 2006, she was among artists who painted seven-foot-tall acrylic Spirit Bear sculptures in support of the B.C. Lions Society's Easter Seal Services. At a gala Spirit Bears in the City event, 23 of the bears were auctioned, raising $200,000 for the society's programs. Today, Mantle's "Now and Then" Spirit Bear is proudly displayed in the Now office lobby.
For this month's showcase in Langley, local companies and organizations sponsored the painting of each horse for display at various locations in the community at a later date.
Last week, an auto repair shop got busy applying a final clearcoat on the stable of painted horses, for protection.
The completed sculptures are on view at Willowbrook until Feb. 3. A "Horsing Around" party for kids is planned for 1 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 19, and meet-the-artist events will be held on Jan. 26 and Feb. 2. Also, a contest prize includes horse riding lessons, dining, entertainment, shopping and more (see shopwillowbrook.com for info).
The other artists involved in the "Horsing Around Langley" project are Vivian Harder, Felicity Holmes, Jeanie Shilton, Louise Swan, Becky Wallace and Rosemary Wallace.