“You Can’t Drink It” Art Exhibit at Lefurgey

Coffee Painting (1)


 Sixty Days of Fame Exhibit

You Can’t Drink It

Artist Bonita Lynn Nichols

The Sixty Days of Fame Exhibit that graces the walls of the Lefurgey Cultural Centre during February and March of 2022 has a different flavour. Summerside artist, Bonita Nichols, has created the exhibit works with the medium of coffee.

You Can’t Drink It is the first solo art show for Nichols, who came to painting through the Island community school program back in the late 1960s. Being a person with autism, Nichols says she “felt she couldn’t do anything,” but through taking the art course at Greenfield Community School, she discovered an artistic talent that translated into “a speck of hope attaching itself to me like a bit of lint on the shoulder.”

It was through art instructor and artist, Arno Freitag, that Nichols was introduced to coffee painting, a centuries old form of creative art. As the use of coffee as a beverage spread through Europe it became employed as a material for painting in keeping with the use of tea by the Chinese to create a sepia look. Coffee painting is once again gaining in popularity with painters seeking out natural pigments to obtain different textures and colours and that monochromatic look. Using coffee enables Nichols to paint without disturbing her asthma.

Over the years Nichols has experimented with different brands of coffee to determine which delivers the best product. She has determined it must be instant coffee and Maxwell House gives her the high quality and variety in colour she is seeking.   

Nichols’ subject matter varies as her inspiration comes from listening to peoples stories. An intriguing story paints a picture in Nichols’ head that she then transforms unto canvas.

The “You Can’t Drink It” exhibit is on display at the Lefurgey Cultural Centre at 205 Prince Street, Summerside. The gallery is open 9 am – 4:30 pm, Monday to Friday.

We look forward to your visit!


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