Beaverlodge Area Cultural Society Exhibition hosting Darlene Dautel

I want to first welcome everyone back.  Perhaps in our area we don’t discuss our work enough or perhaps there isn’t enough awareness created from the products that we are opening to everyone around us.  I recently went to view an exhibit at the Beaverlodge Area Cultural Society of Darlene Dautel.  A number of people asked if I had seen the show and mentioned that it was well worth the trip to go and see.  And they were correct.

My first thought that is was in Beaverlodge and a 25 minute drive away.  My second thought was that if I want to be part of our amazing arts community…25 minutes shouldn’t be a thought.  Not having a lot of experience and understanding of the encaustic procedure and background I felt I walked into unchartered territory. 

I have a tendency to always want to know more.  What the product is?  What are the properties of the product?  What are the limitations and what limitations can I crush with a little outside the box thinking?  I found myself stuck not knowing any of them and the person I went with gave me a brief product review.  An added bonus to the visit…I want to know more of the world of encaustic.

The exhibit from Darlene was a great showing from her.  Having known from the Grande Prairie Figure Drawing Club, I know her work.  But, to be honest, I wasn’t prepared for what I was about to see.  The colors, the textures, and the layering was something that I have yet to see come from her.  Obviously, I’m sure medium, technique, and time frames make everything change in presentation.

For me, it was almost 2 exhibitions within the one room.  In one respect, flashy colors bouncing across a canvas in another,  the intimacy of line with the contrasting light and dark montage.  Many different subjects run over the walls, but to me, her tree scenes and the chickadees were stand out pieces.  I appreciate contrast within work and the 2 series of work use this amazingly.  The use of bold earth tones mixed with the softness make the opposites attract. 

In a short paragraph that Darlene wrote about herself, she talked of process being as important as the piece.  Knowing this, what was the time frame within the show?  I can’t help but wonder if these trees and chickadees are the last ones created.

Even though the show is nearly completion I hope that people did get the chance to view this.  The show brought me to realize many things about the arts in the Peace.  We are fortunate to have facilities like the Beaverlodge Area Cultural Society to support our local talent.  It brings the use of materials and mediums to a discussion where we should never turn ourselves off from experimenting and always needing to learn.  As individuals, a person can learn.  As a collective group, we can find ourselves rising faster to more occasions..

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