Despite a recent European experience soaked in rich arts and culture, the Okanagan’s artistic talents continue to leave a local gallery in awe.
To celebrate the multitude of talent in the valley, Headbones Gallery presents OkanAWEgan, with an opening reception Saturday, Dec. 7, 2-5 p.m.
Featuring 22 artists from the south, central and north Okanagan, the exhibit runs until Feb. 22, 2020.
“We have just returned from the Venice Biennale, the Istanbul Biennale, Berlin, London and Paris and it reinforced our determination to showcase work done right here in the Okanagan because it stands up,” said Julie Oakes, owner of the Vernon gallery at 6700 Old Kamloops Rd. “That is why this exhibition is titled OkanAWEgan because the works inspire awe as does the Okanagan, where those feelings of reverence and admiration are prompted by the physical landscape.”
From the South Okanagan: Penticton’s Glenn Clark and Johann Wessels put realist steps forward. Summerland’s Robert Dmytruk adds to the rush of color that was part of his recent exhibition with David Cantine.
From Kelowna, Johann Feught and Diane Feught’s most recent works will be present. Fern Helfand has her camera’s eye on forestry. Mary McCulloch uses her trained hand to highlight one of the Okanagan’s primary attractions – the vineyards. John Hall takes up the flame for realism. Briar Craig’s text-based works bring the artist’s role into the realm of political commentary with unavoidable illusions.
Wanda Lock, whose studio is in Lake Country, depicts the rodent in the same frame as the human while David Alexander, also Lake Country, and most well known as a painter, moves into the third dimension.
Vernon artist Destanne Norris addresses both the landscape and the journey. David Wilson shows a new tondo that is in line with his water series which is currently in the Kelowna Art Gallery Airport space. Judith Jurica’s new abstract work pulls elements from nature into a similar context as textile design. Janelle Hardy will bring the human body into our Okanagan reference. Heidi Thompson’s large scale color field work provides a lush respite into the spirit.
The sculptors, Doug Alcock and David Montpetit bring together glass and steel in a controlled light while Reg Kienast utilizes the direct power of the sun in his glass and steel creations. Deborah Wilson’s hand-carved jade concentrates on Buddhist references within a context of beauty embedded brought forth by skill that is recognized on a world stage.
Katherine Pickering is a segue between the two dimensional and three for her sleek mounted and shaped images.
And from Salmon Arm, Jen Dyck’s perspicacious collaged pieces sum up the face of contemporary life in all its diversity and implications. Steve Mennie reaches visual plateaus hitherto unexplored with his quilt paintings. Herald Nix presents a group of small landscapes that record his engagement with a stretch of land and water. Ann Kipling from Enderby also has touched her surrounds with diligence and sensitivity.
“Overall, OKanAWEgan is an opportunity to view diverse works of a high calibre all under one roof, much like an art fair or biennale but all made right here the Okanagan,” said Oakes.