Article about the Peace Garden

August 8, 2016

Starts on Page 6 of the August “Eyes on BC”.

By David Morrison.


Linking to a post from Destinations, Detours & Dreams

June 13, 2016

Thrilled to have the Woodwynn Peace Garden featured here:

Screen Shot 2016-06-13 at 8.26.21 PM

And a big thank you to Donna Janke!

Solstice – sculpture at the Woodwynn Peace Garden

April 23, 2016


by Elizabeth Wellburn, Samuel Houston
and Deryk Houston

These are photos of “Solstice” – our sculpture that has recently been placed in a very special location at Woodwynn Farms in the Peace Garden. It is placed in best possible spot to capture the first morning light on the shortest day of the year – the Southeast corner of the Peace Garden. Light flows through it at various times of day during other days of the year as well.

The theme of “Solstice” is transitions (seasonal or otherwise) that happen to people and to the natural world. The sculpture is steel, plexiglass and recycled glass (most of it kiln formed) and I created the translucent design using a glass on glass mosaic technique.

Sometime near the beginning of the construction of the Peace Garden (about three years ago) I knew I wanted to create a piece of art for that location and I wanted it incorporate the cathedral-like quality of coloured glass. I had a strong desire to express my ideas about the winter solstice – the shortest day but also a time of transition to a time of more light. Finding the inner strength to move beyond dark times seems to me to be what Woodwynn is all about. And the solstice is an important marker of the cycles of seasons that are so much a part of farm (and human) life.

An Albert Camus quote from Return to Tipasa (1954) inspired me:

“In the depths of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer.” (As translated in Lyrical and Critical Essays (1968), p. 169; also in The Unquiet Vision : Mirrors of Man in Existentialism (1969) by Nathan A. Scott, p. 116.)

I planned out colours to evoke the four seasons. The bottom left is winter – in icy blues with a few hints of berry red. Moving clockwise there is a panel with the pastels and fresh greens of spring. At the top the turquoise sky shines above colours that might be found in a poppy field or a watermelon patch. Amber and gold are next for autumn and then we complete the cycle with winter once again at the bottom right.

I worked with Samuel and Deryk to develop a structure to house the glass to have a sheltering quality as well as the feeling of a seasonal clock. I feel comfortable and at peace with the solid, rounded design. It serves as an archway over a natural stone bench that allows a visitor to sit and look down at the valley.

Previously this piece was installed in Nanaimo, near the Port Theatre and it stayed there for one year until it was time for us to donate it to Woodwynn. It is now in the spot that it was designed for and I am really happy to see it there!

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Woodwynn Peace Garden is now open to the public

May 3, 2015

Anytime the Woodwynn Farm market is open, folks can also visit the Peace Garden and walk the labyrinth.

We were sooooo happy about the official opening yesterday. The turnout was wonderful, the weather was perfect and it was a truly emotional day.

Here are some photos (not all are from yesterday, but most are).

Sam Houston Sculpture

Note that Samuel’s sculpture “Borrowed Light” was installed in time for the opening day. I hadn’t posted about that yet. It’s been a busy time for us!

Woodwynn Peace Garden follow the path sign







Times Colonist Article about Woodwynn Peace Garden

April 30, 2015

Our Peace Garden project got some coverage today! We’re just about ready for the official opening on Saturday.

(A big “thank you” to Adrian Chamberlain and Bruce Stotesbury)

Glass and Steel Solstice

April 29, 2015

“Solstice” – our steel and recycled glass sculpture. We took it to Nanaimo yesterday and installed it (with lots of help from the City of Nanaimo – thanks guys!!).

I love the location, across the street from the Port Theatre and right on the waterway path that lead to Maffeo Sutton Park.

Here’s a photo that gives a bit of the idea of what it looks like. We’ll go back and take some more on a sunny morning soon and get the feeling of the light shining through.

Solstice Sculpture by Elizabeth Wellburn, Samuel Houston, Deryk Houston

Sculpture by Elizabeth Wellburn, Samuel Houston, Deryk Houston

UPDATE: Here are a couple of recent photos, taken at sunset at the end of May 2015:

And here’s my previous tweet with additional information.

As of April 2016, “Solstice” is now at Woodwynn Farms in the Peace Garden:

Planning to build a new piece of sculpture!

January 21, 2015


A while back I wrote a blog post about a sculpture I was envisioning for a very special location at Woodwynn Farms in the Woodwynn Peace Garden:

The idea was based on an Albert Camus quote that truly inspired me: “In the depth of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer.”  (By the way, I would love to know the exact source of this quote – which book, article or ?)

The sculpture was to be called “Solstice.” As it took shape, it became a collaborative piece – by me, Sam and Deryk and we proposed it for the recent Nanaimo public art call.

We are delighted that our proposal has been accepted! We found out yesterday that we are now funded to build the sculpture. It will have its first home in Nanaimo, probably at Maffeo Sutton Park where Deryk and Sam have had previous sculptures installed. As part of a rotating exhibit, it will be returned to us eventually and then it will go to Woodwynn.

The theme is transitions (seasonal or otherwise) that happen to people and to the natural world. It will be in steel and recycled glass. I originally thought that when it eventually moved to Woodwynn, it would be placed to maximize the light during the summer solstice, but as I stood at that location on the morning of winter solstice this past December, I realized that although less people may want to visit in winter, the effect of low winter light rising in the south would be wonderful. So our plan is to have it in the best possible spot to capture the first morning light on the shortest day of the year.


We are really thrilled to be able to add this part to the ongoing project!

Crowdfunding for the Labyrinth/Sculpture Viewing area

September 16, 2013

So we’re venturing into the world of crowdfunding… let’s see if we can raise the $3000. required to create the tree-lined path leading to the main area of the Labyrinth/Sculpture Viewing area at Woodwynn Farms in Central Saanich – a therapeutic community for the homeless. The concept of this labyrinth includea herbs, fruits and vegetables.

So much work has been done already — we brought the David Kocka sculpture all the way from Indiana and Deryk and Samuel have worked on all those pieces that will eventually move to Woodwynn (see the video in the link below to see what we mean).


Thanks for your support!

(and thanks again to Richard LeBlanc and all the others at Woodwynn Farms – You are amazing…)

Peace Sanctuary Sculpture Park

“Borrowed Light”

May 18, 2013
Samuel's sculpture "Borrowed Light" (with shadows, including my own)

Samuel’s sculpture “Borrowed Light” (with shadows, including my own)



Samuel Houston, welder

Samuel Houston, welder

Our son Samuel focused on the prism-effect and shadows for this sculpture and he calls it “Borrowed Light” — a phrase that my father used to use to describe a room that doesn’t have light of its own but needs to gather it from an interior window. So much of who I am is because of the things my dad taught me.