Diana Gritten, chair of the exhibitions committee with the North Okanagan Federation of Canadian Artists, takes in the Our Canada exhibit on display at the Coatcheck Gallery Monday, May 15. The exhibit is on display until July 17, and is in honour of Canada’s 150th birthday. (Parker Crook/Morning Star)

Diana Gritten, chair of the exhibitions committee with the North Okanagan Federation of Canadian Artists, takes in the Our Canada exhibit on display at the Coatcheck Gallery Monday, May 15. The exhibit is on display until July 17, and is in honour of Canada’s 150th birthday. (Parker Crook/Morning Star)

Exhibit depicts the nature of Canada

The lights are comfortably dim as you descend into the basement of the Vernon Performing Arts Centre

The lights are comfortably dim as you descend into the basement of the Vernon and District Performing Arts Centre. As you pass the coat check and enter the Coatcheck Gallery, you notice the beige walls, laden with the multi-medium work of local artists depicting scenes of Canadian wilderness.

Diana Gritten, chair of the exhibitions committee with the North Okanagan Federation of Canadian Artists (NOFCA), is sitting amongst the art, absorbing the plethora of colour that fills the walls.

“It’s a wonderful public place for artists to show their work,” says Gritten. “It gets a lot of good traffic.”

Our Canada is a non-juried exhibit that brings together 29 pieces of mixed-medium art, on display at the Coatcheck Gallery until July 17.

“They all have to have a Canadian theme to them,” says Gritten, adding that the theme was chosen by NOFCA to coincide with Canada’s 150th anniversary.

As your eyes move from painting to painting, you see the range of interpretations on display. From realism, to enhanced colour visuals, to abstract renditions of Canadian nature. The art encompasses the room, with a subtle, yet adequate amount of light pouring down upon each piece.

The exhibit theme was brought up at a past NOFCA meeting. Interested parties from the organization put their names forward to contribute pieces. 25 of the roughly 73 artists were chosen on a first come, first serve basis.

Our Canada is NOFCA’s first of three exhibits of the year, but “our artists are able to show their work throughout the valley at other exhibits,” says Gritten, an organization perk she, as an artist herself, is quite fond of.

NOFCA is always accepting memebers, she adds. To join, interested artists must first join the Federation of Canadian Artists, based in Vancouver, and attend NOFCA’s meetings on the third thursday of every month.

Our Canada is on display at the Coatcheck Gallery until July 17, with an opening reception May 24 at 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. Artwork on display is available for purchase by contacting the artists directly, with contact information found at the gallery. For more information, visit www.northokanaganfcaartists.com.