Rick Sommers, who is of Aztec descent, is known as the artist who brought and taught “barn block art paintings” to Canada from Ohio. To date, he has created over 320 pieces of barn quilt art. The Turtle nation one piece which represents the Four Directions, is in nearby currently in Wardsville representing the four directions.
Rick is also the creator and owner of the world’s first drive-thru eco- art gallery that doubles as a cyclist rest stop. The gallery is called Made on Earth and is completely eco-friendly. The fence around the building is reused wood and some of the beams are over 300 years old. There are no chemical sprays used on the property.
The fallen leaves from the surrounding trees are used in the artwork. Every paintbrush and the paint used for the art is found and reused. All the plants and flowers that are planted there were thrown out by others. There are many birdhouses along the gallery pathway to naturally attract the birds that to get rid of the mosquitoes. The canvas for the paintings can range from a street sign or a washing machine front.
Rick will be planting walnut trees all around the property and eventually creating a natural archway over the adjoining main road. There was an ancient archway there that was used by the original peoples many centuries ago, but it was blown down in a powerful windstorm.
Rick does what he describes as fusion art. All the paintings have a message or a theme. One of the paintings is father time, which is supposed to, according to Rick, “remind us to live everyday like its your last.” Ant colonies live in some of the artworks that blend with the natural environmental theme.
There is a dream bench along the tour that is surrounded by cedars where Rick accidentally slept there while dreaming andwhile sleeping there, dreamt that he saw himself looking at himself from the other side. At the end of the dream an owl appeared and an eye also appeared. The owl and the eye are a part of the dream bench. The dream encouraged him to create this unique place because Rick follows his dreams.
The gallery has a wishing tub that is only activated by rainwater and the money collected out of it goes to victim services for abused women and children who have noare in need of food, shelter or clothing.
In the middle of the courtyard is the new Avalon , as Rick puts it, where there is a sizeable stage and a natural sound dome to hear your vibrations in a natural way. There is also a place with two rows of flowers so people can get married there. Rick offers the area for marriage for free because he believes that people shouldn’t have to pay to get married. Instead of cutting flowers there will always be flowers there. People can also hold concerts or perform for free using the stage.
Rick will be done with the gallery by 2030 but people can come and enjoy it at this present time. He plans on having a glass blowing studio, ,a stain glass studio, and a place to make and sell soap, and a huge table that will accommodate 140 people to do their art work on.
To visit Made on Earth it is on 2504, Hwy 2 (Longwoods Rroad) just a couple of kilometers from Wardsville Ontario. -Call for info at (519)-693-0904 for more information..