Alex Fong Galleria
The work in this exhibition, of painting on ephemera, began with me using some old cheques that my mother had and was about to throw away – cheques from the early 1940s. It struck me that, as these were old cheques, the paper might be a little higher quality than ordinary bond paper. In the end, it is similar to bond paper….just a little heavier.
The finished look I achieved by doing the paintings on the cheque paper was more than I could have hoped for, however. The colours were rich, the paper was stable, and the texturing of the postage stamps and cancelling perforations made these old wooden fishing plugs stand out in new and bold ways for me.
Second off the mark are the pieces painted on sheets taken from the Illustrated Magazine of Art (1853-54). A friend said to me, ‘Hey, Wayne, you paint on old paper; do you want these?’ He proceeded to give me a stack of the wonderful old magazines, and I was on my way. The pages range through a wild array of topics and themes that appeal to my eclectic side. You’ll see here just how varied the themes are.
Finally in this series is the work done on envelopes. This was a similar story to the old magazine paper – an acquaintance asked if I’d like some 1960s envelopes that were destined for the re-cycling bin. I jumped at the offer, and you’ll see here another varied set of themes has emerged – a set of themes that traces the story of the addressee and his worldly connections.
And I don’t think I’m done with the ephemera either – I can see more works like this in my future. I’ll continue with other watercolour works and with printmaking, to be sure….but for the moment, I find myself sucked willingly into the incongruous imagery that these old papers seem to harbour.
I’ll end this introduction with a thank you to the donors of these wonderful bits of ephemera – donations that have allowed me to explore my art in new and often unintended directions. I am grateful for their generosity and for their thoughtful contribution to this new exhibition: Just North: a showcase of art and design.
Grey Sage Studio
Landscape and panoramic imagery clearly dominate Wilson’s current art work. For the most part, this grows out of a strong notion that there is something attractively primal in the panoramic format. The eye, sweeping side to side, pays a kind of homage to the horizon – and in every culture, it seems to Wilson, the horizon both pushes and pulls us to its brink and beyond. Some of his other compellingly strong tendencies, however, are more strongly drawn toward the eclectic and bring influences from still life and the abstract. As a geographer by training, it has always struck Wilson that the nature of space and/or place are never merely important to the expression of who we are; they are critical. He tries to find that in his art; to distil the place and reveal its own rhythm. Wilson was born in Lillooet, BC in a house his father built out of railway ties. His father had grown up in the Okanagan (Oliver) and, after moving around British Columbia as a school teacher, his family moved back to the Okanagan (Kelowna) in the 1960s. Wilson has worked as a cowboy, truck driver, lounge singer, purchasing agent, college professor, film and talking book narrator and at many other jobs – Wilson spent most of his career, however, in the Museum field and has loved every day of that work.
Sketching and other artwork have been part of his life since he was a teenager, and since then he has taken a sketchbook and paints with him wherever he goes.
Selena Sced, owner and curator at Grey Sage Studio in Kelowna, lives with her family in the breathtaking Okanagan Valley. She attended the Fine Arts Program at Okanagan College as well as the Langara College Design Formation Diploma Program. She finds expression through multiple mediums as a printmaker, painter, and potter. Her passion for printmaking took her from Malaspina Printmakers in Vancouver to exploring and studying in private printmaking studios in Mexico. Paint continues to be a spontaneous expressive outlet that is not as steeped in process as her other chosen mediums. Recently she has begun to apply printmaking techniques to clay to give a narrative quality to her vessels. Some of her images are a direct response to her natural environment but she often gravitates to whimsical.
Paul was born in London England, he immigrated to Canada with his parents at a young age. He began painting at about 20 years old and studied briefly with fantasy artist Boris Vallejo in New York. Paul was always drawn to realism and focused solely on this interest from the age of 25. His fascination for all things with reflective surfaces boosted his love of realism, he also loved to paint the female form and faces. His series “Gotta Wear Shades” is a compilation of all these elements. Paul continues to paint from his home studio in British Columbia.
Joan McEwan, a transplanted prairie girl living out her dreams in the beautiful Okanagan. Art, music, family and friends enrich this place she has called home for the past 17 years. McEwan is a self taught artist, having morphed from her love of photography and digital work into painting about 6 years ago. Always a committed student, her love for a multitude of mediums is evident in her work, but subject matter is largely consistent of faces, figures, simple lines and palettes with a feminine influence. McEwan has always been intrigued by the beauty of an emotion and encouraged by the challenge of capturing that emotion.
Robyn Flinn, your local costume and vintage clothing guru. She has been collecting vintage clothing and costumes for over twenty five years. she currently operate a costume conservatory in Grey Sage Studio. You can see examples of her collection in print featured in numerous published photo shoots, on stage at New Vintage Theatre’s production of Little Shop of Horrors or in person at Grey Sage Studio.