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Peaceful energy from there to here

Portraiture, landscape, and textile works featuring in latest exhibit at Peace Gallery North
LornaPenner-DonnaBozarth
Lorna Penner, left, and Donna Bozarth with some of their works in their new exhibit, ‘From There To Here’.

An eclectic new exhibit by North Peace artists Donna Bozarth and Lorna Penner opened Friday at Peace Gallery North in Fort St. John.

‘From There To Here’  features dozens of works created by the two friends over the last two years, born in 2019 following an art trip they took to England.

“For me that really changed the way I view art,” Bozarth says.

“We were talking about all of our travels, and in 2019 I had just come back from an art trip to Ireland, and we were talking about it and this idea popped up that we should have a show that showcases all the places we’ve been and the people we’ve met along the way.”

OnlyWhenImAlone-DonnaBozarth'Only When I'm Alone', encaustic wax painting by Donna Bozarth

The result is a rich mix of portraiture, landscape, and textile works, with mediums ranging from acrylic and watercolour, to encaustic wax, charcoal and graphite, to wood and stone.

One of Penner’s works, ‘Butterfly Kisses’, was made from salvaged wood dating back to 1930.

“I try to find stuff that’s meaningful,” Penner says. 

“I had wood that I had salvaged before Crystal Springs school collapsed, I pulled it out of the roof. It was built in 1930 and was one of the first schools in Fort St. John and so that was pretty cool. The rocks are all meaningful too, they’re from the Peace and the Halfway most of them, which of course there’s no access to now.

“Things that mean the most to me are representative of my community,” she says.

Harvest-LornaPenner'Harvest', watercolour by Lorna Penner

Bozarth navigates to drawing portraits and figurative work, and some of the prints in the exhibit have toured internationally in Spain, France, and the UK, before returning home for the community to enjoy.

She says the exhibit is a chance for people to learn about different art mediums.

TogetherApart-DonnaBozarth'Together Apart' by Donna Bozarth

“I want them to see all the different kinds of mediums that we use and just enjoy it and see some different things that they might not normally see,” Bozarth says.

Penner says she hopes viewers feel the peaceful energy through the variety of the show: “That there’s something in all of this that evokes some kind of passion or emotion from them that makes them feel good.”

‘From There To Here’ is on display at Peace Gallery North in the North Peace Cultural Centre until May 1.

ButterflyKisses-LornaPenner'Butterfly Kisses', wood and stone by Lorna Penner

Email Managing Editor Matt Preprost at editor@ahnfsj.ca.