On the Cover: In Memory of Johan Willem (Hans) Albarda
By Kevin Lakes
This issue’s cover image is of a sculpture from Hans Albarda’s solo show, “Painless Abstractions,” which will run until May 4 at the Hardware Gallery in Kentville, and features pieces made of maple, oak, walnut, elm, and plexiglass, as well as photographs and pencil drawings. Hans passed away suddenly shortly before the show opened on April 4, and the show is being exhibited in memoriam in accordance with the wishes of his family. We asked his friend Kevin Lakes to share a few words about Hans with us:
Hans Albarda was an intelligent, kind and thoughtful man. He embodied a rare combination of artistry, principles, and pragmatism. He loved teaching, art, engineering, the natural world, and his family.
Sadly, Hans passed away just days before his first solo art show at the Hardware Gallery in Kentville. He would have loved to see the large crowd that gathered at the opening to enjoy his creations.
From the moment Hans and his wife Catherine arrived in our community 21 years ago we felt movement and energy from them that inspired many. Hans motivated his neighbours to take social activism and environmental protection seriously through living by example. As the “go-to” solar power expert, he taught several families that producing one’s own power was not only possible but advantageous and the right way to live in harmony. Hans Albarda lived a life of making people think, through his art and his passion for our planet’s health.
After Catherine’s death, Hans found solace in his studio work and the community. Born in the Netherlands, Hans carried on the legacy of his family in Canada. The Albarda family is well known for social activism and creativity. From the Hague to the Bay of Fundy, Hans gave more to the world than he took.
True to his family motto of Segui Il Tuo Cors (“Follow Your Own Path”), Hans was a living example of living intentionally.