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At The Galleries: Vibrancy fills Greater Victoria walls

Black Truck makes its public exhibition debut at the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria

As fall looms, galleries across Greater Victoria offer vibrancy and the beauty of nature for their audiences.

The Avenue Gallery highlights Lorna Dockstader, Tanya Bone and Naoko Takenouchi this month.

Lorna Dockstader is an Edmonton-born, Calgary-based visual artist, who works in acrylic paints and mediums. Her subject strength is landscapes, currently those of Western Canada. Lorna believes that subtracting non-essentials, as well as the use of elegant colours and neutrals achieves her desired result.

“Recent hikes through a forest reminded me of time spent walking through the Douglas firs in Cathedral Grove. I loved the way the light filtered through their tops, and behind their trunks and branches. The branches created a dark tracery around the shades of light, creating the impression of stained glass. This is how it felt inside a West Coast forest,” Dockstader said.

Dockstader began exhibiting in commercial galleries in 1991. In 1994 she received Signature status with distinction, from the Pastel Society of Canada. In 2002, she received Senior Signature status from The Federation of Canadian Artists.

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Born in Saskatchewan and raised on the Prairies, Bone is deeply influenced by the elements of nature. For as long as she can remember, she has been drawn to the still-life paintings of old masters.

“They speak to me on a deeply emotional level,” she said.

Bone strives to capture the light through the dramatization of a subject and show how light alone can transfigure an ordinary still-life subject, at a specific moment, into something magnificent or tender. She never tires of the hushed silence of still-life and how the solidity of an object can be connected into a set up with an adjoining object of fragility.

She wants her viewer to “see the light, to hear the stillness.”

“I get lost in the choices and the beauty of balancing still-life arrangements. When I have completed the arrangement of a set-up, I sit back and take a long moment just to savour its stillness.”

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Working as a glass artist for almost 40 years, Takenouchi creates hand-blown glass vessels with ethereal colours and intricate, engraved designs depicting a visual metaphor or allegory. Takenouchi began her studies at the Tama Art University in Tokyo and subsequently attended the highly regarded New York Experimental Glass Workshop. In 1993 and 1998 she earned scholarships to attend the world-renowned Pilchuck Glass School in Washington state.

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West End Gallery offers the premiere Victoria exhibition of Josee Lord this month.

Born in Trois-Rivieres, Que., in 1964, Lord is a self-taught artist and has been painting since she was very young.

Her still-life paintings are marked by a singular style, a radiant declination of warm colours and bursting opaque reds and blues that shape the perspective of her still-life flowers.

Lord’s success is based on the passion she communicates with her brush. She begins each piece by sketching on the canvas through texture, form, and pattern then gives free rein to her imagination. Particularly touched by the uneven nature of forms, Lord is very familiar with objects and hand-made things, allowing her the freedom to exteriorize her emotions. Her work can be found in many collections of private art and companies around the world.

The exhibition runs Sept. 10 to 22.

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Madrona Gallery presents a solo exhibit of new paintings by Halin de Repentigny. His third solo exhibition with the Victoria gallery, The Way We Are opens Sept. 10 with an artist event from 1 to 3 p.m. and runs through Sept. 24.

De Repentigny moved to the Yukon from Montreal and lived as a trapper for many years in the Peel Watershed. Now based in Dawson City, de Repentigny is known for his depictions of the remote and beautiful landscapes of northern Canada.

Even after four decades of painting, de Repentigny continues to find inspiration from these isolated places. His love of working outdoors surrounded by the landscape also plays a role in his paintings. The Yukon’s often extreme climate provides de Repentigny with a challenge, one he is eager to meet. Depending on the season, de Repentigny contends with harsh temperatures, short hours of daylight, and insects, while painting plein air. These factors have helped de Repentigny’s practice to evolve and mature. This has allowed him to simplify certain elements like form while distilling the essence of the landscape into his work through colour and light.

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A Maud Lewis painting that made headlines across the country earlier this year is among the retrospective exhibition on display at the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria.

The gallery is thrilled to have Black Truck make its public exhibition debut at the AGGV, said director and CEO Nancy Noble.

“The public’s response to the exhibition has been overwhelming and we look forward to welcoming many more fans of Maud Lewis before the closing in October,” Noble said.

The 1967 painting was purchased by an anonymous buyer for $350,000 in May, the top price ever paid for a painting by Lewis, breaking the previous record of $67,250.

More than 130 Lewis paintings are included in the current AGGV exhibition, which has been extended until Oct. 30 due to popular demand.

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