Birds, feathers, and flight have long fascinated humans, from the Greek tale of Icarus flying too close to the sun to Leonardo da Vinci’s drawings of flying machines.
Vernon’s Headbones Gallery is about to take flight with a new exhibition that shows alternative takes on feathering ways by Okanagan artists.
Headlining A Flourish of Feathers is Vernon-born and Kelowna-based artist Crystal Przybille.
The title of the show derives from a large sculpture called Wish that Przybille (pronounced Shibill) originally created for the Kelowna Art Gallery’s satellite space at the Kelowna International Airport in 2014.
Made from wood and metal, the sculpture is reminiscent of two giant bird wings.
“Wish is the featured presentation of A Flourish of Feathers for it is the sweeping expansive reach of this piece that suggested the title,” said Headbones owner/artist Julie Oakes.
A graduate with distinction from the fine arts program at the University of Victoria, Przybille’s early work was seen in a number of solo exhibitions at the Alternator Gallery in Kelowna, the Art Gallery of the South Okanagan and the Vernon Public Art Gallery.
She also spent extended time practising her art in Europe and the Arctic, with artist residencies in the Netherlands as well as in Rankin Inlet, Nunavut.
“This exposure to the collections of European museums and galleries can be seen in her figurative, monumental public sculptures,” said Oakes.
Przybille’s other public art commissions include her large bronze sculpture of Father Pandosy, located at Kelowna’s Pandosy Mission heritage site, and a series of bronze hands, entitled Hands of Time, she created for Victoria’s sesquicentennial.
Her Illuminature commission for the City of Kelowna’s Revitalization Project, featuring eight designs with images from the natural and cultural landscapes of the Central Okanagan, was erected on 24 light poles along Bernard Avenue in 2014.
That same year, Przybille was awarded the Okanagan Arts Award in the visual arts category for her significant achievements and contributions to the local arts community.
“Przybille’s interest in Sylix (Okanagan) culture came about through her Father Pandosy research and was acknowledged in Illuminature. It continues with a current public art commission for the Westbank First Nation,” said Oakes.
Besides her Wish sculpture, Przybille will show maquettes (sculptural renditions) of both her Father Pandosy piece and the one she has created of Chief Sookinchute, showing the chief standing and raising a feathery plume towards the sky, said Oakes.
Also showing their alternative takes on feathering ways are artists Joe Fafard, Gabriel Orozco, Allesandra Exposito, Doug Alcock, Oakes, Rose Sanderson, Stephen Lee Scott and David Wilson.
The exhibition opens Saturday with a reception from 6 to 8 p.m. at Headbones Gallery, 6700 Old Kamloops Rd., and continues to Jan. 16.
Headbones is also welcoming The Dharma Dolls, consisting of well-known Vernon vocalists Judy Rose, Melina Moore and Tanya Lipscomb, for their fifth annual Glitter and Glam holiday concert, Dec. 27.
Contact the gallery at 250-542-8987, firstname.lastname@example.org for details.