Le prix national
d’art de Salt Spring


Elsie and Tom

Victoria, BC

Artwork Statement

“Elsie and Tom” is based on a small black and white photo from the early ’50s, catching my aunt and uncle in a moment of tension. Each had lost loved ones during WWII, and their post-war demons are the fuel for this painting. Its context is more modern, reflecting the recent wildfires that have savaged interior BC and the Pacific coast. I chose a gentle pastel palette for the figures and the façade of Willows Beach Tea Room, in sharp contrast to the bold colors of the ambiguous background. Leaves or flames?


Acrylic on canvas, unframed


36" x 36"

About the Artist

Ed Hughes is a Victoria-based artist who's been painting, mainly with oils, for a little more than 50 years. He's keenly interested in links and crossovers between art and science, having pursued a parallel career in health care. "Art is who we are, science how we are." My daily art practice is a reflection of this foundation and focuses on relationships between us and our natural world. "I try to weave a little joy, sadness, distance, and strength into my paintings, along with a sense that nature is dominant: we humans are visitors, passengers, and custodians, rather than owners."