Artist puts together sculptural paintings like puzzles

Visitors to a new show at the Kelowna Art Gallery by artist Wally Dion will no doubt be intrigued by the works hanging on the wall – these aren’t your typical paintings. Colourful, repeated geometric forms are rendered in relief, and bridge the gap between sculpture and painting.

Wally Dion likes to work with small units that he fits together like puzzle pieces to create his final images. He incorporates hand-made concentric wooden structures and makes use of “tracks” within the structures that he fills with layer upon layer of paint. The results may remind visitors of the way the rings of a tree look when cut in a cross section.

The exhibition, entitled Mapping Me In … is guest curated by Felicia Gay and is one in the Kelowna Art Gallery’s One on One series. This series is curated each year by an emerging Canadian First Nations curator who selects an emerging Canadian First Nations artist to work with. This year Saskatoon-based freelance curator Felicia Gay selected Wally Dion.

Wally Dion holds a BFA from the University of Saskatchewan and an MFA from Rhode Island School of Design. He has exhibited extensively throughout Canada and has had numerous solo exhibitions. His work can be found in prominent collections, including the Canada Council Art Bank, MacKenzie Art Gallery (Regina), and the Mendel Art Gallery in Saskatoon.

Wally Dion: Mapping Me In … will be on view at the Kelowna Art Gallery through September 20, 2015






[Image Credits]

Wally Dion, steppes, 2014, acrylic and acrylic medium on plywood, 27 ½ x 27½ in. (69.8 x 69.8 cm)
Wally Dion, bisected concentric, 2014,coloured paper on wood, 17½ x 10 in. (44.4 x 25.4 cm)
Wally Dion, concentric, 2014, acrylic and acrylic medium on plywood, 23 ½ x 23½ in. (59.7 x 59.7 cm)
Wally Dion, ziggurat, 2014, acrylic and acrylic medium on plywood, 4 ¼ x 22 ¼ x 22 ¼ in. (11.4 x 56.5 x 56.5 cm)


The Kelowna Art Gallery is located at 1315 Water Street in downtown Kelowna. For more information about current exhibitions, public programming or special events, please visit the Kelowna Art Gallery online at or call 250-762-2226.

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