Credit: Installation view of Delineations: Marilyn Dyer and Gailan Ngan at Surrey Art Gallery.
Delineations: Marilyn Dyer and Gailan Ngan
See bright paintings and sculptures that explore the tension between line and form.
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This exhibition brings together paintings by Marilyn Dyer and ceramic sculptures by Gailan Ngan.
Although generations and mediums apart, the artists both work on the West Coast of British Columbia and share an interest in the environment. They also both experiment with line and form.
Many of Ngan’s clays and glazes are sourced from British Columbia. Her sculptures use materials from a wide spectrum of other natural sources including rocks, ash, and rare earth metals. Dyer’s paintings address humankind’s intrusion into nature. Nature’s commodification and the ongoing environmental crisis are themes in her work.
Bright colours and a sense of play are apparent in Dyer’s and Ngan’s works. In one painting, Dyer combines figurative representations of mountains with abstract colour blocks that suggest boats on water. In another piece, exterior and interior worlds seem to merge, inviting the viewer to consider the nature of perception. Dyer dissolves the genre conventions of landscape painting and modernist abstraction.
In her central sculpture in this exhibit, Ngan balances two solid shapes or “characters” on a thin, curvy ladder typical of children’s playground equipment. This placement highlights the contrast in materials and brings ceramics out of the glass display cases. “Double Hearing” encourages a different way of seeing ceramics. Ngan’s ceramic practice subverts the conventions of fired clay forms and surface in West Coast naturalist ceramics. Her recent work emphasizes the role of the human body and its trace in the creation of clay vessels.
If delineation is the act of outlining or representing something with lines, the artworks in this exhibit both outline and transect their respective forms.
About the Artists
In the 1950s, Marilyn Dyer studied with Arthur Lismer at the Art Association of Montreal and William Scott at the Banff School of Fine Arts. Dyer has lived in the United Kingdom, United States of America, Africa, and Taiwan. Each cultural influence has added a dimension to her visual outlook. Her teaching career has spanned five decades, half of which were in teacher development. Dyr taught art education at the Calgary Teacher’s Centre for the Fine Arts, University of Calgary, University of British Columbia, and University of Cape Breton. She has painted professionally since the 1960s. Her paintings, drawings, and lithographs have been shown internationally. Having lived for many years in Surrey, Dyer now lives in White Rock.
Gailan Ngan grew up on Hornby Island, BC in a family of artists in the 1970s and 1980s. She graduated with a BFA from Emily Carr University of Art + Design and received a North-West Ceramics Foundation Award of Excellence in 2015. Her recent solo exhibition Chronicles was presented at the Art Gallery at Evergreen, Coquitlam. Her artworks have been part of exhibitions at Canadian Craft Museum, Museum of Anthropology, Nanaimo Art Gallery, Kamloops Art Gallery, Centre A Vancouver, San Diego Art Institute, Art Los Angeles Contemporary, among others. Ngan currently lives in Vancouver.
Curator: Jordan Strom
Origin of Exhibition: Surrey Art Gallery