Discovery: The Simple & the Complex
As Max Wayman, the culture critic (who spent some time in the Valley a couple of years ago) has stated, "When we talk of the many benefits that contact with the arts can bring to society, we must never lose touch with the fact that art stems from a single source: the artist. How heroic the act of making arts is: a brief attempt to contact other living creatures, a raised finger of defiance in the face of the inevitable, a quick stab at immortality before the lights go out."
As is evident in these pages, we've again managed to assemble a rich and diverse mix of voices and disciplines to demonstrate the viablity of the burgeoning arts scene in the Okanagan. In this issue we explore a couple of connective themes: the process of discovery of talent and ideas in our midst, and the diversity of opinions about what's interesting, important, and vital. No matter how broad or narrow your interest in the arts, we're sure you'll find much to cheer and puzzle over in these once again jam-packed pages.
Our goal continues to be to discern and discover that which reflects our own sense of value, and confirms our own connection with the miracle of creativity. To foster it in ourselves, and in our community.
We present a number of new writers, while some familiar hands continue their exploration of the creative community through the ideas and images that inspire, comfort and inform us. We showcase the work of several dedicated visual artists, and the collectors and curators that nourish them. We give voice and space to the distinctive and unique culture of our communities, and we continue our definition of what it means to be creative through the works of poets, painters, storytellers, dancers, gardeners and film makers.
Those who pay attention to such things will know that our work of discovery does not end on these pages. We provide a number of other ways for you to interact with the culture community:
Directory: We encourage you to use the complete, searchable and up-to-date version on our website, and to contribute to making it as complete as possible.
Agenda: We provide a brief listing indicating the plethora of arts events that are taking place through the autumn months. Again, we encourage you to keep up-to-date by refering to the www.okanaganarts.com website.
Events: We have partnered with the Okanagan Institute and Mosaic Books to present a continuing series of public presentations by the writers and artists we feature in these pages. They take place on Thursday afternoons and are free, informal and informative. We encourage you to come out and help us celebrate the growing influence creativity has on our community. More information is at www.okanaganinstitute.com
We continue to be amazed at the generosity that the arts and
business communities have shown to our efforts, and appreciate the support
and encouragement of our writers, readers and advertisers.
The Cover Image by Gary Pearson
One Way Ticket, 2002, Oil on canvas collage, 226 X 228 cm
The subject of the painting is "the journey". This could be a journey from one city to another, or life's journey. The title infers the absence of the return. The artwork depicts a train and accompanying tracks, and train yard buildings painted in a dark blue-black colour in the upper half, and the lower portion consists of a labyrinthine network of undulating lines in red over a salmon coloured ground. The style of the painting makes reference to Expressionism, Noir, Pop Art, and the photographic.
Gary Pearson is an artist and Associate Professor in the Department of Creative Studies at UBC Okanagan, in Kelowna, where he teaches Painting, Drawing, and a graduate course called Research Methods in Creative Theory. He also works as a freelance art writer and independent curator, and is a contributing art reviewer for Border Crossings magazine, Sculpture magazine, and author of the book The Creative Voice: Life and Art in the Okanagan, Caitlin Press, 1998. His exhibition history includes solo and group exhibitions in Canada, the US, Australia, and Europe. He will have a solo exhibition at Elissa Cristall Gallery, in Vancouver, in October 2007, and at the Kamloops Art Gallery in March 2008. He has received numerous grants and awards, including the Vancouver Institute of Visual Arts VIVA award in 1991. He has had artist residencies at PSI/MOMA, New York (1990-91); Künstlerhaus Bethanien, Berlin (1998); Triangle Arts Association, Brooklyn (2004); Pouch Cove Foundation, St. John's (2004); and Sydney College of the Arts, University of Sydney, Australia (2005).