Discover Victoria’s Garden of Monsters
I was pedalling along Victoria’s E&N Rail Trail on a recent spring morning when a tall, green creature caught my eye, and when I circle back I stumble upon a Garden of Monsters.
The art exhibit; a whole series of large sculptures displayed beside the path was created by Esquimalt resident Alan John Hewitt. Most of the 40 or so sculptures are made from driftwood and found objects. The one I first spotted is called Night Watchman— it has two faces, with four blue eyes that light up at night.
On this particular day Hewitt and a helper were adding the latest addition— a large animal-like sculpture.
“I’m not sure what I hope people get out of my sculptures. Joy and maybe inspiration, I guess,” said Hewitt. “I am not sure if I make them for the public to admire or for my own selfish needs for a creative outlet.”
Many of the pieces were originally done for a gallery in Esquimalt, but a month before the show was set to display his work in April of 2020, he got an email saying the gallery was closing. And it wasn’t long after that, Hewitt’s wife Sharon lost her patience with her husband, who was storing them in their front yard. “So I came up with the idea of putting them here,” said Hewitt.