Words by Barry Dumka.
Through his art, John Ferrie acts as an archivist and storyteller as he seeks to find the architectural gems and vivid moments that define the city in his eyes. His canvases have the chromatic bravado of a Fauvist scene coupled with a purposefully exaggerated style that is reminiscent of Keith Haring and David Hockney. Ferrie’s lines are curvy, kinetic, sinuous but never straight. His candy-bright colours radiate an alluring sensuality. Along with his dramatic landscapes, Ferrie has earned recognition for his ongoing series of vivid floral works – wild, undulating blooms that evidence his interest in classical French still lifes. And his figurative pieces represent a queer parade of colourful characters and exaggerated personalities.
But it’s the rhythms and grandeur of Vancouver that continue to spark Ferrie’s attention. In his expressively lyrical style, Ferrie transforms the city’s vast panoramas, jumbled perspectives, architectural gems and intimate corners with a pageantry of jewel-toned colours. His paintings appear both magisterial and marvellous. The city as dreamscape. For over 30 years, Ferrie has made his art as if a theatrical illusionist spinning out vividly creative visual stories about the way he sees Vancouver and the world around him. Filled with wit and charm, Ferrie’s work dazzles the senses.
John Ferrie lives in Vancouver and paints in his private studio filled with his collection of contemporary art pieces. Ferrie has been selected for key artist residencies in Paris, New York and Hong Kong as well as at Rideau Hall in Ottawa. A popular figure in the Vancouver arts community, Ferrie has also exhibited in San Francisco, Miami and Seattle. In 2016, John was honoured to be awarded the TD Pride Legacy Award recognizing his long and continuing commitment to the LGTBQ community. When not in his studio, John can be found on his bike somewhere out in the city looking for his next composition.