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2023 Exhibitions

Illuminating Language

Dick Averns

October 5 – December 20, 2023

Illuminating Language by internationally exhibited and award-winning artist, Dick Averns, is a survey exhibition, spanning thirty years of text-based art addressing a range of topics including social justice, conflict, natural resources and mental wellness. Averns’ art has been acquired for multiple collections, including by the Canadian Clay and Glass Gallery, Department of National Defence, Province of Alberta, City of Calgary, and multiple private collections. The critical value of his work was recognized in 2020 when Dick received the City of Calgary Mayor’s Cultural Leaders Legacy Award for Healing Through the Arts, following a multi-year project addressing community mental wellness.

A Visual Journey

Doris Charest

October 5 – December 20, 2023

“During my time at Mackie House, I rediscovered my love for painting.  Life had been so busy that I hadn’t spent much time in my art studio this year.  However, my main goal during this residency was to paint the beautiful local scenery.

This whole painting experience at the residency was a surprise for me.  I had to start with the basics again and slowly reintroduce experimentation in my art practice.  Happily, trying out experimental techniques became second nature again.  It felt like a smooth transition back into my art and I’m excited to share my artistic journey at Mackie House with you.” – Doris Charest



VPAG Members

November 2 – December 20 2023

Exposed! is an annual exhibition by the VPAG Members.

Altered Reflections

Crit Club Members

July 20 – September 27, 2023

Altered Reflections is an exhibition composed of various Vernon high school students, VPAG Crit Club is an after-school program committed to the development of student art production and critiquing abilities. The culmination of our various sessions beginning in January of 2023 has resulted in our group exhibition, Altered Reflections. Altered Reflections consists of VPAG Crit Club artists choosing an artwork from our permanent collection and creating a response piece. Altered Reflections is an exercise for the Crit Club artists to generate ideas from studying established artwork, as well as an exercise in curation for the artists. Thus, the resulting response artworks become a contemporary, and altered, reflection.

Field Marks

Lisa Matthias

July 20 – September 27, 2023

The exhibition titled Field Marks was created by artist Lisa Matthias, an interdisciplinary artist based in Edmonton. While her primary focus is on printmaking, she also incorporates photography, drawing, and animation into her practice. Matthias’ work revolves around ecological issues, and she derives her imagery from direct observation and the study of nature in various locations.

Within her field of study, Matthias specializes in large-format woodcuts, a material-oriented process that allows her to experiment with different tools and techniques. Although most of her artwork is representational, some pieces exhibit an abstract quality. This abstraction stems from her observations of plant forms under the microscope. By magnifying these structures, Matthias captures microscopic shapes and incorporates them into her large-format prints. Additionally, her intuitive and experimental artistic approach contributes to the abstract appearance of the forms and compositions.

Field Marks is an exhibition that combines art and ecology. The selection of prints includes both representational images and abstract structures based on magnified plant forms. The abstract images, while derived from microscopic observations, still maintain a connection to observable reality. The cohesive element of the exhibition lies in Matthias’ artistic style, characterized by dense mark-making and strong contrast between negative and positive spaces. Field Marks serves as a lyrical intersection of scientific inquiry, artistic interpretation, and expressive mark-making.

Lisa Matthias would like to recognize support from the Canada Council for the Arts.

Emerging from the Ashes of an Okanagan Cultural Genocide

Bernadette Gregoire

July 20 – October 25, 2023

The reintroduction with my Okanagan heritage happened through a cherished and memorable experience of the Okanagan rite of passage and naming ceremony performed by my father especially for me. It began one day when I was home visiting my Mom, Dad and younger brother. I was already married and in my early twenties so this ceremony was quite unexpected. I was looking out the living room window and saw our cat playing with what I thought was a mouse at first until I saw the stripes down its back. I was startled and excited because normally chipmunks are not seen on Grandview Flats. I became anxious and did not want the cat to kill the chipmunk so I ran outside and quickly rescued it from our cat. I observed that the little chipmunk was breathing quickly, limp and its eyes were closed as I held it in my hands. Walking into the house I checked it for noticeable injuries and found no blood or scratches. To my surprise the chipmunk stirred and jumped out of my hands. My Dad was blind and deaf aided by a hearing aid for the one ear that could function with assistance.

My father and mother influenced my series of artwork pieces as I now have a deep respect and pride in my Okanagan traditions interspersed with Catholicism. The creation of my artwork is strongly influenced by the legends of my people therefore each piece has a story to tell. Thus I am slowly emerging from the ashes of my personal trans-generational trauma created by the Okanagan Cultural Genocide and Assimilation and Oppression process. And the work continues …..

Ten Thousand Things

Jim Kalnin

May 25 – July 12, 2023

Jim Kalnin’s artwork is both thought-provoking and visually captivating. He is using his artistic talent to convey important messages about the environment and humanity’s impact on it. By incorporating surrealist settings and other elements, he adds a layer of depth to his work. The works encourages the viewer to consider not only the physical world, but also the spiritual, metaphysical and philosophical implications of our and planet Earth’ existence.

Kalnin’s exhibition is grounded in a keen observation of reality, highlighting the disproportion between humanity and the world we inhabit. He is drawing attention to the pressing issues of climate change, deforestation, water pollution, and the extinction of species. By juxtaposing images of animals, fish, and humans in surreal places, he creates a vivid and compelling narrative that invites the viewer to contemplate the interconnectedness of all things.

The fluid and animated nature of his images suggests movement and change, echoing the dynamic nature of the environment and the urgent need for action. The suggested house-like structures that are often in motion and may represent the fragility of our own homes and habitats and the need to protect them.

Overall, Jim Kalnin’s artwork is both aesthetically stunning and deeply meaningful, urging us to consider our place in the world and our responsibility to preserve and protect it.


UBCO BFA Graduates:

Bella Jiang, Jordan MacDonald, Emily-Jayne May Myatt, Julia Person & Angela Wood

May 25 – July 12, 2023

Emergence is a group exhibition featuring the works of five recent graduates from UBCO’s BFA program. The exhibition showcases a range of art forms, including painting, sculpture, and mixed media printmaking installation. The various artworks explore themes related to art history, the human condition, mental health and gender identity.

The artists in the exhibition draw on a variety of influences, including art history and traditional modes of artistic production, but include contemporary art forms as well as street graffiti and sculptural installation. Many of the works are based on research, and some are also informed by personal experiences and exploration.

Overall, the exhibition Emergence offers a diverse and thought-provoking collection of works that highlight the talent and creativity of these emerging artists, as well as their engagement with important social and cultural issues.

Through Our Eyes

Teen Junction Members:

Ben Owen, Sam, Dayton M, Taylor Z, Logan H, Maddy Z, Ava W, Hailey Z

May 25 – June 16, 2023

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.

Art & Soul

SD 22 Secondary Students

April 18 – May 17, 2023

Art & Soul is the annual exhibition in partnership with secondary students within SD 22.

Art from the Heart

Elementary Students within SD 22

March 16 – April 12, 2023

Art from the Heart is the annual exhibition in partnership with elementary students within SD 22.

step, slither and scroll

Sage Sidley
March 16 – May 17, 2023

Sage Sidley’s exhibition at the Vernon Public Art Gallery titled step, slither and scroll contemplates the existence of overlapping and connected digital and analogue systems on both the micro and macro levels. Her research includes investigating technological networks which we encounter daily. The ubiquitous use of the Internet is a good metaphor; every action a person executes is being intercepted and analyzed by third parties who collect all of this possible information. These collected data include who, to whom, from where to where, from when, until when, IP addresses of the devices of the Internet users combined with the other data. These collected data then serve various enterprises as tools to connect third parties to this personal information and preferences and choices of individuals using the web. These might be just business or commercial proposition in forms of targeted advertising, but also for nefarious purposes.

We Are All One

Kama? Creative Aboriginal Arts Collective
January 12 – March 8, 2023​

We are all one: connected to all living things! In our Syilx Culture we are connected to the source where we come from and return..We are part of everything including the land, water, the animals, plants and universe..(stars, sun and moon). It is powerful when we live as part of this sacred connection as it reciprocal and crucial to survival. 

Text supplied by the Kama? Collective Aboriginal Arts Collective

Interface: Reimagined Connections

Chloe Jenkins, Julia Pearson, Makeena Hartmann, & Sara Richardson.
January 12 – March 8, 2023

This group exhibition features works of four emerging artists enrolled in the final semester of their BFA studies at the University of British Columbia on Okanagan campus. The exhibition displays a variety of media which include drawing, sculpture, painting and screen-prints. The drawings of botanical style images are complemented by works which address the issues of the human condition. The additional sculpture is focused on the stewardship of environment and the intrinsic beauty of the complex ecosystems.


Angela Hansen
January 12 – March 8, 2023

This installation reflects the immensity of the seed varieties that exist within the Svalbard vault and endeavours to educate the viewer about its existence. Online, you can find an up-to-date account of the numbers of depositors, genus, species, and seed samples; at the time of this writing, there are 93 depositors, 1138 genus, 5968 species, and 1,195,244 seed samples. Each of these numbers is represented visually by part of the installation: the wall pods are depositors, individual seeds on strands are genus, the seeds contained within the offering vessels are species, and finally, the grains of rice are the seed samples. The resulting visual impact of this immersive installation speaks to the scope and importance of seed vaults.

This installation also addresses, at minimum, 5 of the 17 UN sustainable development goals, which are a collection of 17 interlinked global goals designed to be a “blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future for all”. The SDGs were set up in 2015 by the United Nations General Assembly and are intended to be achieved by the year 2030.

Unstoried Self

Kelsie Grazier
January 12 – March 8, 2023

Kelsie Grazier – statement

Unstoried Self focuses on the liminal space between Deaf and hearing. The modern world is structured in a way — under a medical model — that does not support what it means to be wonderfully, culturally Deaf. Historically, Deaf people have been marginalized and segregated. In the early 1800’s, Oralist educators decided to ban sign language in schools. The spectrum of deafness from hearing, to hard of hearing, to profound deafness has seen devastating impacts of this decision. Deaf scholar, J. Bauman asks an important question that I reference in my art practice: “how has the absence of sign shaped our ideas, categories, thinking, experience, and being?” To be able to construct a positive identity within a society that does not value signed languages, one must explore their personal history, geographic culture, and ideologies.


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