Kelowna band Joyful Door plays the opening reception for the new exhibition

Creative minds converge at Headbones

UBC Okanagan fine art students make a Four-Way stop for exhibition at Vernon's Headbones Gallery.

  • Mar. 2, 2014 8:00 a.m.

Headbones Gallery is introducing four new artists who are currently involved in specialized art practices while studying at UBC Okanagan.

To celebrate their arrival, Kelowna band Joyful Door will add a musical dimension at the show’s opening reception Friday.

Four Way is an exhibition by emerging artists Kelsie Balehowsky, Lucas Glenn, Sarah Anne Franklin and Malcolm McCormick, each of whom approach the making of art from different perspectives, however, they possess a common contemporaneous, said Headbones owner Julie Oakes.

Each artist is currently and rigorously pursing a degree from UBCO in the creative and critical studies department.

“The two women have chosen photography as their disciplines. The men use less technical art practises, McCormick being a painter and Glenn using collage and found objects,” said Oakes.

Balehowky’s work can be related to that of the New York artist Cindy Sherman, whose series Untitled Film Stills (1977-1980) saw Sherman posing as a dramatic film star persona.

Balehowsky begins her story in the Facebook, text-messaging generation, relating digitally levels of contrived identity.

“Shot in Kelowna’s Bean Scene, Alone Together portrays a haunting similarity between the people in the coffee shop. Not only are they all consumed with their hand-helds, but despite inhabiting individual bodies, they seem to lack true individuality,” said Oakes. “This disconnect is caused by the fact that each character is actually a disguised Balehowsky and none of them are relating to each other for they are too consumed by the information coming from their handheld devices.”

Franklin shows a different sense of identity alienation. She too uses portraits and group scenes to convey her ideas, however, they are suggestive.

“There is a semblance of another time and place,” said Oakes. “Since most of her scenes are in rural settings, and as we are sociologically more of a cosmopolitan orientation, even the simple and common portrayals appear distant. There is the feeling that something is about to happen and that prescient awareness comes with discomfort.”

McCormick also acknowledges the barriers of modernity. He experiences the great outdoors from the inside looking out, as if from within a vehicle looking through the window, said Oakes.

“Although there is a relationship to landscape painting evidenced in his primarily abstract work, the organic is often placed in the context of a man-made framing,” she said. “In the speeding flash of hill and vale, the realization of the earth flattens out so that rather than a visual wander through his paintings, there is an instantaneous hit, much like the single frame of a movie.”

Billing himself as Lucas Glenn Co., Glenn uses contemporary and historical items with facile irreverence to construct his works.

“A gleaner of objects that already tell their own stories through their patinas, associations, tactile weathered narratives, Glenn reaches out to the past to create his projection of a future,” said Oakes. “He makes monuments, museum displays or tableaus out of scrap, declaring the new thing an art piece valid through his recognition of it.”

Friday’s opening reception, with music by  Joyful Door, runs from 6 to 8 p.m. The exhibition runs until March 29. Headbones is located at 6700 Old Kamloops Rd. Call 250-542-8987 for more information.


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