Joice Hall cleans her painting, Epiphany, in preparation for the Hand-picked Okanagan exhibition at Headbones Gallery. (Photo submitted)

Fun summer nights at Headbones Gallery

Headbones Gallery has reserved two nights outside of the busy Okanagan summer to focus on the arts

Headbones Gallery has reserved two nights outside of the busy Okanagan summer schedules of friends, family and outdoor fun to focus on the arts in their cool gallery and studio spaces.

Dave Soroka stops in on his way to Arts Wells to refresh our ears with his original songs Aug. 2. Hailing from Grand Forks, this veteran musician is a well-known figure on the music circuit, famous not only for his song writing but also for his coffee with his portable coffee wagon churning out lattes and cappuccinos at local festivals.

“Soroka has a lot of energy, and though he swears he’s not on an all-day coffee break, he has written over 350 songs as of the count just before he played for 24 hours straight as a fundraiser for Music on the Mountain in Fort St. James last August,” said gallery owner Julie Oakes.

The doors open at 7 p.m. and the songs begin at 7:30 p.m. and end at 10 p.m. Tickets can be reserved by phone at 250-542-8987.

While Soroka serenades, Hand-picked Okanagan will be in the galleries, with an official opening reception Aug. 3 from 6 to 8 p.m. with many of the artists in attendance.

Hand-picked Okanagan is a chance to see a variety of high caliber art works and, if Wednesday is the evening chosen, to catch the concert as well,” Oakes said.

The stellar lineup includes work from Doug Alcock, David Alexander, Glenn Clark, Carin Covin, Briar Craig, Robert Dmytruk, Jen Dyck, Leonard Epp, Diane Feught, Johann Feught, Joice M. Hall, John Hall, Fern Helfand, Angelika Jaeger, Byron Johnston, Ann Kipling, Patricia Kushner, Mary Smith McCulloch, Steve Mennie, Rhonda Neufeld and Rodney Konopaki, Herald Nix, Oakes, Gary Pearson, Stephen Lee Scott, Heidi Thompson, Laura Widmer, and David Wilson.

“The landscape is unavoidably featured in Hand-picked Okanagan but the take on the ‘scape is varied,” Oakes said. “Headbones has just received a painting by Joice Hall that shows a strip of Okanagan Lake with the Mission Hill Winery tower in the foreground. It captures the wonder of the valley as a beam of winter sun illuminates a strip of land.”

Works by Widmer, McCulloch, Nix, Jaeger, Knopaki with Neufeld and Kipling bring the perfect balance between detail and vista into view.

Wilson’s landscape series addressing water uses signs and symbols derived from his Okanagan Nation’s heritage in combination with a bright pop style. Clarke, a resident of Penticton, shows an elite view of his inner city rendered in a super-realist style.

Hall takes another turn on super-realism with his 60×80 inch painting Rattle.

Landscape veers into abstraction in a large Alexander painting, Smoke on the Water. Alexander picks beauty, colour, shape, and nuance from those summer days when the smoke drifts in as if he has captured images of the powerful fire in direct confrontation with living, growing nature.

Covin’s new abstract circular composition brings to mind the essential elements of Okanagan sun and sky while Thompson’s detailed handling brings to the fore the intricacy of relationships between natural forces. Alcock celebrates a larger perspective with a sculpture with the year 150 in mind and in Dmytruk’s works, though they may have initially been prompted by an aerial view of the land, the images are more akin to a party than a respite.

The psychological kaleidoscope of humanity is seen from a variety of artistic interpretations in the works of Craig, Pearson, Diane Feught, Johann Feught, Johnston, Kushner, Mennie, Oakes, Dyck and Lee Scott. Their works bring to light the multifarious social and cultural landscape, raised here in the Okanagan and coaxed into being by the skill and talents of exceptional artists.

Hand-picked Okanagan runs Aug. 2 to Oct. 15 at Headbones Gallery, 6700 Old Kamloops Rd. The gallery is open noon to 6 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday.