Ann Kipling’s work, be it landscape, goats, plants or human, records a vibrational liveliness.
The celebrated Falkland artist’s mark making is diligent, filled with energy and presence, says Headbones Gallery owner Julie Oakes.
About to show her new portraits in the exhibition, Headspace, at Headbones, Kipling has a discipline that demands a balanced head space and a willingness to engage.
“In her ongoing works of portraits this perception of energy is especially acute. Every inch of space, empty or occupied, is alive,” says Oakes.
Now in her 80th year, Kipling was born in Victoria and started drawing the landscape upon graduating from the Vancouver School of Art in 1960.
She has lived in Richmond, the Lynn Valley, in Oyama and for the last 37 years has called the countryside near Falkland home, which she shares with her husband , renowned sculptor Leonhard Epp.
Kipling works exclusively on paper –drawing and printmaking, with ink, pencils, pens, pastels, pencil crayons, watercolours– and her work can be found in numerous public and private collections across Canada, including the National Gallery of Canada, The Vancouver Art Gallery and the Artists For Kids Gallery.
In the exhibition catalogue For the Record, Drawing Contemporary Life, which showed at the Vancouver Art Gallery in 2003, Kipling said, “When I am drawing from the figure or the landscape, I am fascinated by the change, movement, energy and transformation of form in a seemingly static situation.”
In 2008, Kipling received an honorary doctorate from the Emily Carr University recognizing her contributions to the Canadian artistic landscape.
In 2011, the Douglas Udell Gallery in Vancouver hosted a retrospective of Kipling’s portrait work, which like her landscapes, are recorded over time.
The model is required to pose in one position as Kipling records the impressions and small shifts in the movement to produce the portrait. Later, she invites the model to move, and this change of position is recorded.
“It is an intense cooperation between the sitter and the artist,” said Oakes. “There is an authenticity in the process that transfers into the piece, to carry through time. Each mark is stolen from that brief present. It records the past and pushes the image through to the future, to be seen again. And the vibrancy is retained.”
Ann Kipling’s Headspace opens with a reception at Headbones, 6700 Old Kamloops Rd., Thursday from 6 to 9 p.m. The exhibition continues to Nov. 30. Contact the gallery at (250) 542-8987 for information.