The artists involved in this exhibition example how artist run culture in the Kootenays has been supported and developed over the last decade. The place in which we live is an important part of the creative process; artists are informed and fostered by place, where they live and where the work was conceived and created. Each artist will display an early instrumental piece – from their tenure here in the Kootenays, in tandem with a new work which will illustrate the evolution of their respective creation/styles/approach. This exhibition is about artist run culture, about the creative process and the importance of place.
Capturing a view of a landscape, through tall grasses there is a couple joined, runes swirl around them as they stand by a lake with reflection and stillness. The starting point and reference for this new painting Reflection at Wragge was initiated by one of seven doors (Secrets) that were part of a body of work entitled Joining Worlds that was inspired by the early visual language of my eldest son. As part of Joining Worlds I created sixteen square runes, grouped in fours, that formed a key to my son’s visual language. (Rune, in Old English archaic language, means “whispering, or secret talk.”) In the spirit of the word, the runes formed a key to whispers from my son’s secret world. This body of work also included seven doors (Secrets) that varied in size and treatment, each door containing and repeating rune elements. I chose Secret 2 as my inspiration from which to create a response 7 years later.
When creating Reflection at Wragge I surrounded myself with my collections; the “rune” prints from Joining Worlds, papers, collected natural materials with various acrylic mediums and paint. I had a broad plan to include the “rune” prints in a Kootenay landscape referenced work, a collage painting that is a response to living and creating right here in the Kootenays. The location I chose on Slocan Lake is significant to me and my family, as we have camped and shared time together in this place many times over the last 10 years. The materials and placement were selected by reacting to what was happening in the work, the development is definitely intuitive in nature. By building layers of paint and collaged materials complex surfaces are created and memories of place are layered and uncovered through this process. There is an air of nostalgia and romanticism and a reference to Edvard Munch’s Couple on the Shore.