A. Lee Harris makes his mark in the community


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You have to drive a few miles out of town to get to the A. Lee Harris Art Gallery, but it’s easy to find, its driveway is marked with one of his outdoor sculptures and a simple sign indicating “art”.

When you first walk into the yard you might think you are in a local apiary after spying on the dozen brood boxes on the left and Harris will tell you to watch his ‘horse running free’ which does. that add the charm of his small farm.

Then she leads you through a door into her gallery, part of the converted barn, and you realize she’s the real deal. Sculptures, paintings, prints, jewelry and more adorn the walls and shelves.

When asked if she had always been interested in art, she replied, “My parents recognized it when I was a child and at 11 I started with watercolor lessons. .. [and] when i was almost in high school [my dad] got me a dremel tool and started working on the woods. I would draw on it and [the dremel ] would do it in 3D. ”

She has always worked in multiple mediums, but spent 35 years focusing on snow sculptures as part of Bonners Ferry‘s snow sculpting team, even depicting the United States competing in 2015 in Winnipeg and Manitoba. . You might also recognize one of its pieces; she designed the sculpture for the library.

Harris takes inspiration from nature and wildlife and is easy to see in his work, especially his sculpture. She looks for “movement” in stone and admits that it is her passion. “After 35 years of snow sculpture … and it is a very temporary art, I chose between iron and stone”, choosing the latter. Each raw piece has its own personality waiting to come out.

It’s easy to see why she made this choice when you look at her sculpture.

One of his pieces, “Thundering Hooves”, carved in Carrara marble atop a granite support, represents a small herd of galloping horses. Each horse has its own unique mood and expression, with one nibbling at the back of another and a young colt at its mother’s heels. It’s a beautiful piece that took him eight years to finish.

Another sculpture called “Eagle Over the Canyon,” carved from a huge piece of opaque Utah alabaster in gold and tan, shows a golden eagle soaring over a large chasm.

Despite her many years of artistic creation, she had not considered opening her own gallery until the pandemic struck last year. Like so many others, she had to find a new way to display her work after closing a number of resources.

The gallery opened last week and has been a resounding success so far. “Since it opened at nine in the morning, I’ve had a constant flow here… I was surprised at how wonderful the turnout was.” His work sells for between $ 5 and $ 12,000 and each piece is one of a kind.

She also offers sculpture and / or painting classes, $ 25 per hour plus the cost of materials. You can choose clay, antler or stone for sculpture lessons and oil, acrylic or mixed medium for painting lessons.

Harris wanted to make sure she got a triple message: first, she’s open for business, second, she makes orders, and last but most important is that she is grateful to the Bonners Ferry community and the people who were extremely supportive of it. of her during the 36 years she has lived here.

If you would like more information or would like to make an appointment to see his gallery, you can email him at [email protected] Please put “go to the gallery” in the subject line.

About Kevin Strickland

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