Virtual art exhibits are popping up as Greater Victoria art galleries navigate the challenges of social distancing.
What was once an open door for visitors and a chance to celebrate an artist’s effort is now a place to visit by appointment only. Instead, businesses like West End Gallery are doing Facetime appointments. Madrona (downtown) is even hosting an online opening with Zoom.
Leave it to art lovers to find a way.
Currently, the West End Gallery, situated on the corner of Broad and View streets, is hosting a Paul Paquette exhibit featuring the Squamish resident’s landscapes that put his unique texture onto West Coast Scenes.
Paquette’s premiere exhibition with West End has been a long-awaited and eagerly anticipated event, said Amy Boyle of West End Gallery.
“The paintings in this show represent a good cross-section of what interests me as a painter these days – not just subject wise but also the colours, textures, canvas shapes and sizes,” Paquette said.
It’s in the studio that Paquette thrives on recreating nature.
“I’ve always regarded my studio as being like a laboratory – a place to experiment and challenge myself. It is what keeps painting lively for me,” he said. “A photograph often misses the essence of a scene – whereas with the sketch I can stress the important details and omit distractions.”
Madrona Gallery (View Street) is opening Metamorphosis by Halin de Repentigny on May 9.
It’s a solo exhibition of new works from the acclaimed Yukon artist. For those familiar with him, this collection builds on de Repentigny’s signature esthetic of immediate and intuitive impressions of various locations around the Yukon.
Over the last three decades, de Repentigny has grown his reputation from local bushman artist to a nationally recognized figure that captures a unique experience of life in the Canadian wilderness.
“I always paint my landscapes outside, and this year I pushed myself with much larger canvases than I usually work with for such a time-sensitive undertaking,” de Repentigny said. “This made time the biggest challenge, second to light.”
West End Gallery is open daily, by appointment only, between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. To book an appointment call 250-388-0009 and for more info visit westendgalleryltd.com.
Madrona is also open by appointment. To view Saturday’s 1 p.m. opening for de Repentigny visit madronagallery.com for more information.