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2022 Exhibitions

Living Through Wildfire

Andreas Rutkauskas
October 6 – December 21, 2022

Segment from Artist Statement

I began documenting landscapes affected by wildfires during the summer of 2017. At the time, standing near the edge of a forest that had recently burned offered a certain amount of exhilaration. Through dialogue with members of diverse communities, including fellow researchers at UBC’s Okanagan campus, I have learned about how forest ecosystems have adapted to wildfire and how certain species depend on fire for renewal. These conversations have altered my perspective of fire as a destructive force. Over the three fire seasons that followed, I made photographs that contained a certain amount of optimism. I avoided photographing devastated structures and, for the most part, turned my camera to environments that were undergoing renewal after the fire rather than depicting active wildfires. 

…Picking up my camera and engaging in the creation of hopeful pictures seemed to attack the dignity of those who were displaced or had lost everything. I was also uninterested in documenting this trauma directly, thereby contributing to the media rhetoric. Perhaps visitors to this exhibition have been directly impacted by wildfires themselves. This exhibition comes at a time when artistic representations of wildfire are becoming increasingly prevalent. As global communities continue to heal following the trauma of recent fire seasons, I hope that my images can act as a conduit to understanding our local ecology within the context of international climate change, and ultimately enhance our resiliency.


Members Exhibition
November 3 – December 21, 2022​

The annual VPAG members’ exhibition.

The Invisible String

Melissa Burgher
October 6 – December 21, 2022​

Artist Statement – The Invisible String

The works created at the Mackie Lake House are inspired by experiences and memories from areas I visited during my residency. I found that the inspiration for these works came not only from the Mackie Lake property, but surrounding areas connected to it along Kalamalka Lake.

The Invisible String is symbolic for the interconnectedness of experiences and how they can shape or change a body or work. The concept for the work also speaks to the attachment an artist has with their creations. Often, there is an intimate cycle an artist has during the stages of idea generation, implementation and completion encompassing the creative cycle.

The Invisible String is also the identity of the artist as seen in their works and how paintings relate to the artist. Each person is unique and when authentically creating, there will be a string of identity found in the work that is individually distinctive.

This is Water

Lindsay Kirker
July 28 – October. 26, 2022​

Lindsay Kirker invariably questions the world around her. The artist is drawn to her surroundings, and her paintings are a reimagining of the connection between the natural and industrial world, and the people, places, and things that are a part of her journey. Her practice does not appear fixed, rather constantly evolving and carrying with it a level of certainty, and equally, a desire to embrace change. Through the use of numerous perspectives, Kirker allows us to imagine multiple scenarios. On the one hand, our civilizations are being overtaken by the environment as a result of climate change or vice versa. On the other, our urban and organic worlds are working in unison, a vision of sustainability and hope. These facets are steeped in themes of love, loss, and sacred matters of the heart. There is so much that can be found in Kirker’s work, but the leading figure of this exhibition is water, that which requires some time to unpack. 

Text by Maggie McKenney

Fleurs Du Mal

Alexandra Haeseker

July 28 – Sep. 21, 2022

The Fleurs du Mal is the latest exhibition created by Calgary based artist Alexandra Haeseker specifically produced to be on display at the Vernon Public Art Gallery. Haeseker’s studio practice has been focused on the critical context of the existence of all living organisms and inevitably their coexistence and survival in this era of advancing climate change. She uses artistic means to convey messages about the state of the ecological impact of human activity upon the environment. The focus of Haeseker’s exhibition Fleurs du Mal is on the portrayal of plant matter and insects and their critical role in the ecosystems.

Behind the Mask

Katie Green

May 26 – July 13, 2022

What does it mean to be seen—and accepted—in our authenticity and wholeness? To have a space to explore the vastness of our emotional experiences without judgment, but rather with curiosity?

Behind the Mask explores a space where our emotions, whether joy or grief, aversion or delight, can all be welcomed and celebrated as vital experiences that contribute to our individual and collective growth, self-awareness, and healing.

In Behind the Mask, 10 special individuals in Vernon have shared a vulnerable, beautiful exploration of the unseen sides of themselves. At a time when mental health challenges have affected so many of us—is a story of hope, courage, and community.

What does Hearing Loss Look Like to You?

Canadian Hard of Hearing
May 26 – July 13, 2022

The Vernon Public Art Gallery teamed up with the Canadian Hard of Hearing Association – BC Chapter to present the exhibition What does hearing loss look like for you?

“We are so excited to be bringing this community-based exhibition to the public. Hearing loss impacts such a wide range of humans, and the pandemic has created more accessibility and communication challenges than ever before! We look forward to seeing our community engage with this topic in a visual way, bringing awareness and reducing the stigma associated with hearing loss.”
-Kelsie Balehowsky, Learning and Community Engagement Curator

Through Our Eyes

Teen Juction Members:

Tyson L, Tylor Z, Hailey Z, Dayton M, Emberlyn W, Andrew E, and Anonymous

May 26 – July 13, 2022

Through Our Eyes is a unique community based project by the youth at the Teen Junction Youth Centre in partnership with the Vernon Public Art Gallery. The Vernon Public Art Gallery strives to connect the art and the community and supports emerging artists working outside of mainstream of artistic production. The focus of the exhibition is to give voice to youth and make statements about their lives and experiences in Vernon. We all have a unique voice and presence in our community and Through Our Eyes is an affirmation of the importance of recognition, representation, collaboration and the arts.

Teen Junction Youth Centre is an after-school drop-in centre that offers a safe space for youth to unwind, connect and learn. The Centre works with community organizations to connect youth with support and resources when they need it.


UBCO BFA Students

Amanda McIvor, Ari Sparks, Avery Ullyot-Comrie, Fiona Firby, Hana Hamaguchi, Mackenzie Beeman, Maura Tamez, Sofie Lovelady, Susan Protsack
May 26 – July 13, 2022

Emergence features the works of nine artists who have completed their studies at UBC Okanagan’s BFA and BMS programs in 2022.  Exemplifying various approaches to research, studio practice and asserts an active hands-on attitude while creating their work. This exhibition includes painting, drawing, sculptural installations, printmaking, participatory film and immersive sound installation.

For the most part, the works in the exhibition were hand-made and as such carry strong associative elements. The works communicate ideas based on our human experience and existence, our apprehension of physical and psychological spaces. Combined with the conceptual strategies used by these artists, their approaches highlight the materiality of an art object.

Art & Soul

Secondary Students within SD 22

April 18th – May 14th, 2022

Artwork created by secondary students from School District 22 displays a maturity of handling various mediums and more importantly, demonstrates a strong conceptual approach.

Art from the Heart

Elementary Students within SD 22

March 16th – April 10th, 2022

Annual Exhibition in partnership with elementary students within SD 22.


Brigitta Kocsis
March 17th – May 18th, 2022

#Techboyz is a series of paintings that bring together different strategies and techniques to express Brigitta’s relationship towards the subject of everyday life for young adults. Capturing a special moment in time where they regain a sense of freedom after long periods of isolation, she brings together different strategies and techniques to express her relationship to the subject formally and conceptually. 

Ramble On

UBCO Public Art Collection
January 13th – March 9th, 2022

Ramble On is a group exhibition of artworks from UBC Okanagan Gallery’s Public Art Collection, a rambling tour, which introduces some of our newest acquisitions including works by Judith Schwarz, Sheldon Louis, Tania Willard and Neil Cadger. The exhibition at Vernon Public Art Gallery presents a variety of artistic mediums – sculptures, paintings, prints and video artworks by a diverse roster of artists – alumni, faculty, local, Indigenous, international, figurative, abstract, emerging and established. This exhibition will be providing viewers with insight towards a variety of different artists, their practices and the various media used to create thought-provoking, insightful works.

From the Void

Steve Scott

January 13th – March 9th, 2022

Steve Scott’s exhibition From the Void is influenced by ancient art, myths, and legends as well as Science Fiction Literature, short stories, and essays. His illustrations draw from depictions of deities or martyrs and struggles between monsters, demons, and gods placed in unearthly planes of existence. 

Unsettle the Settler: Dismantling Systemic Oppression

KAMA? Creative Aboriginal Arts Collective
January 13th – March 9th, 2022

Kama? Collective is composed of Okanagan Nation established and emerging artists who have joined together to advocate aboriginal interdisciplinary and multimedia arts development promotion, education/community involvement and production.   

Hidden Spirits

Coralee Miller
January 13 to March 9, 2022

The works of Coralee Miller are inspired by traditional Sylix/Okanagan Oral Stories, helping herself stay connected with her own culture and expressing love and pride for her heritage and the ways they were brought forth. Through these stories she connects daily life as well as her environment through a cultural perspective, wanting to share them and their integral teachings of bravery, forgiveness, responsibility, and transformation with others.

Being a Sylix/Okanagan woman, Coralee is a member of the Westbank First Nation. Having grown up on the Ir#9 reserve in Westbank, she now works as a tour guide at the Sncewips Heritage Museum. Where she is able to combine her work with her passion for storytelling, culture, and art.


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