Public invited to Illustrated Artist Presentation

Public invited to Illustrated Artist Presentation
Tuesday, October 29, 7 – 9 pm
Okanagan Regional Library, Vernon 


Decades of outdoor activities, twelve years of work as a biological surveyor, and countless hours of field drawing and painting in the rugged backcountry of western Canada continue to shape the work of October Fresh! AiR artist Rick Cepella, from Powell River, BC. Cepella is working from a studio at the Allan Brooks Nature Centre and living at the Caetani Cultural Centre. As part of the Fresh! AiR program, Rick Cepella has been producing multi-sheet works on paper and large canvas, working in response to the inspirational landscape of the North Okaganan.

The drawings and paintings are done in a direct manner, and exhibit a power and freshness in their liberal use of paint and materials.

Senior Canadian artist Gordon Smith has compared Rick Cepella’s works to that of contemporary expressionist painters Cecily Brown and Peter Doig, in their sheer love of the medium and exuberance of expression.

“This artist draws and paints directly from nature … the subject starts with the mountains and forest but the act of painting takes over. The brush marks and the colour become the subject.” ~ artist Gordon Smith on Rick Cepella

Expansive in scale and scope, the works are also intensely focussed and Cepella’s travels through the Canadian wilderness have given him a keen eye for detail. One has the sense of the artist being immersed in his subject on both a spiritual and visceral level. Observes Ontario artist John Hartman:

“I am particularly impressed with his on-site pencil drawings of the mountains, which are closely observed and carefully rendered. The subsequent large paintings are very convincing to me. While they are full of bravado painting and strong colour, they are fully realized and seem to me to be very true to experience.” 

Cepella’s works have been included in numerous solo and group exhibitions across Canada, including faculty shows for the Kootenay School of Art, Victoria College of Art, Red Deer College of Art and others. His work is in collections across North America.

He studied drawing and design at the University of British Columbia, The University of Ottawa, and Emily Carr College of Art and Design and has attended a number of artist residencies in British Columbia, twice receiving full scholarship to the Tony Onley artists project in Wells, BC.

In addition, Rick is an award-winning cartoonist/illustrator published in many major Canadian newspapers and magazines. His cartoon and illustration work has garnered several national and international awards and is in the permanent collection of the National Archives of Canada.

Rick has taught art to thousands of students for over 25 years at numerous art schools, public art galleries and in the public school system. He has taught at the Okanagan School of the Arts, Selkirk College and the Kootenay School of Art among others. He currently lives and works in Powell River, British Columbia.


Expressing Landscape
Campbell River Public Art Gallery, BC, 2010
Grand Forks Public Art Gallery, BC, 2011
Two Rivers Public Art Gallery, Prince George, BC, 2012

Cepella will also be giving an additional workshop in acrylic painting at the Lake Country Art Gallery in Winfield, Saturday and Sunday, November 2 & 3rd. Contact 250-766-1299


For more information about the artwork and the October 2013 Artist-in-Residence project please contact the artist Rick Cepella directly by email

For additional information about the Allan Brooks Nature Centre and the Caetani Cultural Centre partnership or programs please contact:

Aaron Deans – Allan Brooks Nature Centre – 250-260-4227
or Susan Brandoli – Artist-in-Residence Coordinator/Caetani Centre 250-275-1525 (9 am – 12 noon, Mon – Thurs.)

The Caetani Cultural Centre is a registered charitable organization dedicated to providing creative spaces, projects and opportunities for local, national, and international artists, and to providing educational and interactive opportunities for the Greater Vernon cultural community.

Thanks to Aaron Deans and the Allan Brooks Nature Centre for providing endless studio space for Paul Roux and subsequent Fresh! AiR artists. Thanks to the Okanagan Regional Library for hosting the Artist Presentation.

Please visit our website for additional information or call the Caetani Cultural Centre (C3) at 250-275-1525.

Thank you!

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