Lynn Cociani / Andrea Fredeen

April 11 - May 13, 2017

Opening reception: Friday April 14, 7-9pm

Lynn Cociani (Main Gallery)

Heart & Home

I've always been fascinated with the subject of place.  How does the place we live influence our lives?  How does our home shape us? I know what I love about Smithers, as a visitor here.  I was curious about what you connect with.  What do you love about this place?  How has it shaped you? So I put the question out there.  If you could pick one photograph that communicates best what you connect with about your home, what would that photograph be?  I took the photographs that I received and interpreted them with paint and brush. This is really your exhibit.  It's a celebration of your community and the incredible beauty that surrounds it.  In all the world there is no place like this, is there? Thanks to everyone who collaborated with me on this project by contributing a photograph.  

Artist's Statement

Art has always been my closest friend.  I love looking at and talking about art, and most of all I love making art.  It's when I'm making art that I feel most connected to myself, and to my world.  I always feel a deep connection to my subject, whether I am painting a person, a dog, or a landscape.  The process of painting affords me a powerful way to interact with my surroundings.  I feel very fortunate that I am able to make my living doing what I am most passionate about. I work in a variety of mediums, choosing the medium based on what it's qualities can say about the subject matter.  I often use chalk pastel for portraits because of the way it can communicate the softness of light on skin.  I like using acrylic paint for landscapes because of it's vibrancy and flexibility. I am deeply inspired by the northern landscape and the people and creatures that make their homes here.  I love the wildness, the colour, the endless space and silence, and the tight knit sense of community that seems to stretch beyond municipal boundaries.  I paint to celebrate this place of ours.

Bio

After receiving her Diploma in Fine Arts from Okanagan College in 1985, Lynn took on various artistic occupations such as airbrush artist, sign painter, designer and custom framer before making the decision in 2003 to stay home with her two young daughters.  This provided her with an opportunity to pursue a career in art.  She now teaches art lessons and workshops, and is a busy portrait and landscape artist. Lynn has exhibited at the Smithers Art Gallery, the Terrace Art Gallery, and the Ruth Harvey Art Gallery at the Museum of Northern BC in Prince Rupert. Lynn grew up in the Okanagan surrounded with browns and yellows. Her current obsession is experimenting with the feelings of mood and moisture that surround her on the north coast.  Her travels to Smithers, Kispiox and Haida Gwaii have provided endless inspiration, keeping her busy at her easel.  She finds so much inspiration in the north, from the stunning natural surroundings to the communities and personalities that grow and thrive here. Each time she picks up her paintbrush she is celebrating another facet of life in this magical place.

Andrea Fredeen (Mini Gallery)

Narratives of Light & Form

This collection of paintings is a study of the structural forms found in nature, the human subject, and the way light makes an impression on each. There is a coordinated response between the subject, light, and shadow which leads the viewer’s eye across the image and creates a narrative. The subjects of each of these so-called short stories, are based on my life experiences. That said, each image will represent an alternate story dependent on each viewer. There are numerous different perspectives from which each image can be experienced, resulting in many different and equally interesting stories. 

Artist's Statement

I am interested in the structure and shapes found in the forests of British Columbia and with the human form; there’s a narrative in every gesture and landscape. I am a story teller, and I have spent much time exploring different forms of narration. I get excited when I find a visual story of some kind, in a place or subject where at first glance there did not seem to be anything obvious. I primarily work from photographs as reference, although I do paint and draw from life. The photographs I use have typically been taken by myself, as I find that a memory of a place or situation plays a significant role in how an image will be represented on canvas. From the original photograph, I develop drawings that will eventually be transferred onto canvas, and from there I work with paint on the composition and tonal values. The way oil paint moves and behaves seems to suit my process, and although I have used other mediums, I am always returning to the comfort of the properties and colours of oils. 

Bio

Andrea S. Fredeen is an artist whose many life experiences have provided her with opportunities to observe the world from different perspectives. She has been living in Prince George since 1991 with her husband and two (now adult) children, and has worked as a physiotherapist. During this time, she also pursued her lifelong interest in art and achieved her Bachelor of Fine Arts in visual art an creative writing from UNBC and Emily Carr University of Art and Design in 2014. She completed her Master of Arts in English in 2016, with a creative thesis that explored the connection between fiction and visual art as forms of story telling. Fredeen’s favoured medium is oil paint, with the dominant themes of her work being the forests of British Columbia and the people in her life.