Victoria Wan shows her UV silkscreen print entitled Atman as part of a joint exhibition by UBC Okanagan advanced printmaking students at the Vernon Public Art Gallery. The show opens Thursday along with the work of Stephen Lee Scott

Contemporary art enlivens walls at VPAG

A number of Okanagan artists are part of four new exhibitions opening Thursday at the Vernon Public Art Gallery.

The Vernon Public Art Gallery is starting the new year in style with four new exhibitions opening Thursday.

Of all the artists involved in the solo and collaborative exhibitions, the majority of them are from the Okanagan area, including Vernon.

Benny Hannya lives in Vernon, Rhonda Neufeld is from Armstrong and Stephen Lee Scott also calls the Okanagan his home.

“It is exciting to see the quality of art produced by the artists living and working in this area,” said VPAG curator Lubos Culen. “The gallery is pleased to create venues for emerging and established artists and highlight the importance of their contribution to the visual arts and culture in general.

“All four upcoming exhibitions carry a strong conceptual underpinning within the context of contemporary art practices that include artistic collaboration, urban art forms, drawing, and experimental printmaking.”

Neufeld joins Vancouver-based artist Rodney Konopaki in a talk at the gallery’s opening reception to discuss their co-exhibition of prints and mixed media drawings.

Titled Drawn Passages, the exhibition is a recent addition to the artists’ on-going collaboration, which first began in 2007.

The drawings and prints produced over that four-year span attest to the evolving mode of operation in which the artists have approached their given subject matter, said Culen.

“When viewing the works, one must ask the inevitable question as to what the purpose of the collaboration is, and why each artist is willing to abolish sole control of the process and in turn, authorship of a finished work of art,” he said. “The images exhibit disciplined sensibilities by both artists; the action of one artist is not contradicted by the action of the other. The result is found in the final product that reflects their intent, which is artistically and conceptually complementary.”

In turn, emerging Okanagan-based artist Scott has focused on the portrayal of dystopian subjects appropriated from popular culture and historical references in his exhibition, Beauty and Other Forms of Violence.

While Scott’s artistic interest and practice reference formal classical portraiture, his interpretation of the subjects is based on aesthetic features which often challenge the norms of acceptable social behavior, said Culen.

“The installation of portraiture drawings of historical and invented characters is also reminiscent of rogues gallery: a collection of photographed mug shot images of individuals of shady or questionable character,” he said.

“Scott’s incorporation of cryptic symbols that adorn the figures offers the viewers a glimpse into the lives and spectacles of these obscure personages within a broader context of plausible, yet incomplete and fragmented narratives.”

Another joint exhibit features the work of local artists Hannya and Cody Moyor, who have extensive experience in contemporary street art.

The work in While You Were Sleeping will be produced directly on the gallery walls using spray paint, together with an aesthetic and technical approach to urban graffiti, said Culen,

“The installation addresses important issues surrounding the discourse of the legitimacy of urban art and its function within a community,” he said. “Additional aspects of this project include the temporary nature of the work created specifically for the duration of this exhibition, which also challenges the notion of the commodification of an art object.”

Advance printmaking students at UBC Okanagan are also returning to the VPAG with their second annual Proof Positive show.

Organized by associate professor of printmaking Briar Craig, with the help of fourth year UBCO fine arts student Heather Leier, who curated the exhibition, Proof Positive II is the result of numerous entries submitted by students.

Leier made a selection of 17 works produced by 11 students, and the prints in the exhibition are a comprehensive sample of a variety of printmaking techniques taught and practiced in the UBCO fine arts program, including forms of intaglio, lithography, relief printing, and UV screen printing.

Participating artists in the exhibition include Jon Corbett, Angela Duclos, Lauren Gemmell, Ursula Kabis, Malcolm McCormick, Jason Negreiff, Camille Selhorst, Lacia Vogel, Victoria Wan, Tony Wang, and Laura Widmer.

The VPAG welcomes guests to attend the opening reception for all exhibitions on Thursday, Jan. 5 from 6 to 8 p.m. Konopaki and Neufeld will discuss their work in Drawn Passages that night at 6 p.m. Special musical guest Windmills will perform following the artist talk.

All exhibitions continue at the gallery until March 22. For more information, visit www.vernonpublicartgallery.com or call 250-545-3173.

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Water draws Vernon artists together for exhibit

Gallery Vertigo open house Saturday for Spirit of Water

Lake Country Food Bank camera stolen

Silver Ford crew cab seen taking equipment from social service agency

Popular Vernon pond gets new observation deck

Work will start soon on structure at Cools Pond in the BX that will include roof covering

Lumby centenarian dies one week after milestone birthday

Carl Werner, who spent most of his 100 years in Cherryville, died Monday, Aug. 3

CrossFit Vernon celebrates a decade of community

For 10 years, CrossFit Vernon has been supporting their community

B.C. doctors, dentists call on province for mandatory mask rule

Open letter says masks should be worn in indoor public spaces, public transportation or in crowds

Merritt man arrested after allegedly touching children inappropriately

Skylar Mcleod, 24, is facing six charges, including one for sexual interference

Dwindling B.C. bamboo supply leaves Calgary Zoo biologists worried about pandas

Zoo has been trying to send pandas back to China since May

Alberta man’s body recovered from Okanagan Lake after five-day search

‘The depth of the water, as well as the topography of the lake, made the recovery of the deceased very challenging’ - RCMP

Facebook launches its new TikTok clone, Instagram Reels

Facebook has a long tradition of cloning competitive services

B.C. Appeal Court prevents Victoria woman from using the term ‘death midwife’ in her job

Pashta MaryMoon claimed she had been providing “death-care services” for more than 40 years

‘We all have anxieties’: B.C.’s top doctor addresses return-to-school fears amid COVID-19

Dr. Bonnie Henry promises school restart plan safe for B.C. kids

West Kelowna wildfire ‘under control’

B.C. Wildfire anticipates no further growth from the three-hectare fire

Most Read