2017 FEatured artists
Meagan Berlin (b. 1991) is a self-taught visual artist and illustrator currently living on traditional Lekwungen territories. Her influences are a mix of admiration of Ashley Oubre, Tallulah Fontaine, and Andre Moya. Her portraiture is at once sharp and gentle, and depicts a fixation on the clarity of presence of a portrait.
Margaret Briere is a contemporary, Two-Spirited, Coast Salish artist from Shíshálh Nation. Margaret was born in traditional unceded Lekwungen and Wasanec territories, where she still currently resides. She grew up in an urban setting, which drives her art.
Margaret began developing her artistic talents through singing and playing music at an early age. She carried on with her art practice as she became an adult. Some of her influences include Susan Point, LessLIE, Chris Paul, and Maynard Johnny Jr. Margaret has been showing her work in community art shows since 2010. Since 2013, she began to make prints and develop her business skills in becoming an established artist.
Today, Margaret is incorporating computer software training under the guidance and mentorship of fellow Coast Salish Artist, Mark Gauti. Enabled by the Emerging Artist grant she received through First People’s Cultural Council, Margaret is integrating her current work with design technology. This allows the time, mentorship, and equipment to move away from traditional printmaking and painting toward the digital art world.
"I am a Metis artist born and raised in Victoria BC. I have been involved in visual arts for my entire life, but I have been painting murals semi-professionally since 2011. A lot of my past work has been inspired by my familial ties and my various interests in history, culture, and the natural world. I feel very fortunate to have had the opportunity to live on unceded Coast Salish territories and to have had the chance to work alongside many of the great First Nations artists who call this land home."
Courtney is a young visual artist from Seattle, Washington and has recently completed her BFA in Visual Arts at the University of Victoria in Victoria, B.C. Courtney’s work revolves around performance using her own body to explore the themes of body image, the human connection to nature and mother, relationship between mind and body, dance/movement in relation to the body in space, raw physicality of the body and voice, and its natural rhythms/sounds. Her current performance work Habitat focuses on the relationship between human and nature by allowing the viewer to encounter an exposed vulnerability within the space as the performer embodies a fetus or seed through direct contact with composted soil.
Véronique Emmett is a dance artist from Victoria, BC. She graduated from Professional Program of the School of Contemporary Dancers in 2016. She now holds a BA (Hons) in Dance from the University of Winnipeg. Since graduating Véronique has worked with Jennifer Mascall, Koba Entertainment, NAfro Dance Productions, Stand Up Dance, SOS Dance, and Stephanie Ballard and Dancers. Most recently, Véronique worked as an intern for MascallDance, producing and performing in BLOOM 2017- Choreographic Residencies. She also performed with Stand Up Dance at the World Dance Alliance Global Summit in St. John’s, Newfoundland. Véronique is very grateful and excited to participate in and bring performance and dance to the 2017 Integrate Arts Festival.
Laura Gildner is an intermedia artist currently studying visual art at the University of Victoria. Her practice is rooted in the performative and encompasses elements of video, photography, sound, installation, and participatory live work that seeks to confront the personal and sometimes absurd correlations that can exist between memory and identity. Often collaborating with strangers, she is especially interested in how popular visual culture and the notion of home can inform a space or experience.
Laura has had recent shows at Presentation House Gallery, the Ministry of Casual Living, and XChanges Gallery as well as participated in the IPA Summer Residency in Forte Marghera, Italy last summer. She also regularly curates exhibits at the Slide Room Gallery and organizes community-based art events around Victoria.
Alongside work in the Integrate group show, Laura will be creating a series of site-specific participatory performances that travel between selected Integrate exhibitions in the downtown core on Saturday, August 26th beginning at 1pm. Public Displays of Affection will use urban geography as a starting point to explore personal connections to place and the layered intersections that can exist between the body, identity, and art.
Colton Hash grew up in the Rocky Mountains of Montana and currently resides in coastal Esquimalt territory on Vancouver Island. Hash has worked extensively as a tree planter in Northern British Columbia where he has been exposed to mass industrialization from forestry and petroleum development. These sights have informed his practice as both an artist and social organizer, and influence his desire to communicate about our society's relationships with the natural world.
Hash experiments with a variety of mediums, connecting sculpture, animation and computer programming. Intuitively working through physical and digital means, Hash strives to create accessible projects that are enriched by environmental, social and experiential imperatives. He has collaboratively performed in tree planting bush parties, West Coast League of Lady Wrestling events, and directs his creative practices towards creating engaging artworks in community oriented spaces. Hash is finishing his B.Sc. in Computer Science, Visual Art and Environmental Studies.
"I am a Victoria-based abstract painter, working with mixed media and acrylic paint. Although I have experienced painting in a variety of manners, abstraction is my preferred style as it allows me to paint instinctively and experiment freely. I draw much of my inspiration from the works of Post-war Abstract Expressionist like Franz Kline, Mark Rothko and Joan Mitchell. I value the emotional and expressive quality of their work that makes it accessible to everyone regardless of their life experience and education. I refrain from making overtly conceptual art; instead, I focus on creating balance, texture and contrast within the work. I choose to leave the meaning up to the viewer’s interpretation.
I have little formal art education or training, however, in the future I plan on taking Continuing Studies courses at Emily Carr University of Art & Design. In the meantime, I greatly look forward to continuing my exploration of painting, learning new techniques, and broadening my repertoire by learning from the artistic community around me.”
Romi Kim is a first generation Korean Canadian woman who is often questioning her identity. Where does she come from? Who does she belong with? Whose lands are we on presently?- are a few of the questions asked. Kim grew up in the small town of Armstrong where the population is 5000 and where the population of Koreans was her family. Kim has recently completed a Bachelor of Fine Arts with a double major in Visual Arts and Gender Studies at the University of Victoria. She primarily works within an interdisciplinary approach in video, installation, performance, and media.
In Kim’s practice, she investigates themes of racialization, nationality, and colonialism with the use of storytelling and often times with a smidge of humour. In the summer of 2016, she created a video animation that is on display as part of the permanent exhibition at the New Westminster Museum. Kim is passionate about creating art for not only the contemporary art audience but for the broader public. This year she will be working abroad in a rural community in South Korea to work at a school and learn more about Korea.
Alison grew up in Quebec and Ontario. She worked in northern Canada for many years and eventually settled in British Columbia. Her degree in Fine Art began at Mount Allison University and was completed at the University of Guelph. She has been classically trained with a strong foundation in anatomy, drawing, and colour theory. Alison has studied printmaking and drawing in Florence, Italy, Tibetan weaving in Dharamsala, India, and Sumie painting in Kyoto, Japan. She has worked in glass, bronze, soapstone, painting, drawing, weaving, and fabric. Currently she is studying and working in painting and sculpture. The themes she is most interested in are landscapes, spirituality and figure drawing. Her work has been exhibited in Ontario, New Brunswick, the North West Territories, British Columbia, and Washington, DC.
Leah McInnis is a multidisciplinary visual artist engaged with modernist theory and material exploration. Working primarily in large scale painting and print media, her work combines digital and handmade gestures as a way to depict space and encourage conversations around how information is interpreted and conveyed. McInnis is currently an MFA candidate at the University of Victoria (2018) with a specification in painting. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English and Film Studies from the University of Alberta as well as a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Emily Carr University of Art + Design. Her design sensibilities come from a two year stint working as the Art Director of an internationally renowned political magazine. Leah McInnis has participated in many exhibitions in galleries and artist-run-centres across western Canada and internationally. Originally from northern Alberta, McInnis is currently living and working in Victoria, BC.
Libby grew up in Toronto and Guelph, Ontario. She currently resides on Lekwungen territory of the Coast Salish Nation. She previously studied International Development Studies and Gender at the University of Guelph. She coordinates community art spaces and has worked on city-wide policy projects that support community inclusion. She is completing an Honors in Visual Arts from the University of Victoria in Spring, 2018, specializing in installation and photography art.
“Born in a small town in South Korea, I moved to Seoul to pursue a major in Artistic Crafts. For three years after graduating from university, I worked as an assistant to a famous Korean contemporary artist, and taught painting and crafts to children from time to time. By adding imagination to scenes from everyday life, my paintings focus on conveying nostalgia that has never been seen before. My goal is to create art that people can relate to, without the need of a language. Aside from painting, I also enjoy making small crafts and hope to bring small happiness to others through the things I make. Currently, I am working on putting together a children's picture book based on experiences from my own childhood.”