July 22 – September 2, 2022
The Art Incubator Gallery
Yvonne DuBourdieu is interested in the imperfections and frailties of humanness. The subjects that populate Yvonne’s work regularly embrace aspects of the feminine, the vulnerable, the singular or outsider placed in unexpected worlds of illusory spaces or imagined realms. A sense of place or belonging are themes that play out in her paintings. Landscape, landscape elements and botanical imagery play an important role in Yvonne’s work, using them as reference points for place and time, for history and heritage, as well as a way to express a perceived fragility and innocence of things feminine.
This current body of work looks at the dichotomy of power and weakness within ourselves and the unease that manifests when our vulnerabilities are laid bare through heightened uncertainty. Believing as humans we have an enormous capacity to adapt to new circumstances, while also struggling to accommodate any level of change, has led her to explore this internal place of disquiet between comfort and discomfort, the place where we go to ruminate and think, to face our self-doubts and find answers to our fears. She sees this internal space as a necessary and very human place from where acceptance and growth can happen.
The paintings are storied, embracing other-worldly environments that reflect these feelings of disquiet; narratives permeated with visual fragments of the familiar, of memory, and of dreams. Into this world of disparate elements, feminine character/s are immersed, ambiguously falling, floating, rising or simply suspended or frozen, in a backdrop that feels both chaotic and serene at the same time.
Yvonne DuBourdieu is a contemporary neo-surrealist painter working in various media but mostly in oil. Her work uses a wide variety of styles and impulses of painterly language to explore the space and visual experiences of painting. Through her art practice she deconstructs and reinterprets her life experiences and life interests from photographs, memory and imagination. Many of her paintings are landscape based or influenced, with a number of them harking back to her Scottish roots as well as referencing elements of her current life in Canada. Yvonne’s work as a photographer and documentary filmmaking has informed her studio practice with a strong sense of emotional and atmospheric narrative.
Yvonne was born in Scotland and grew up in a small village in Stirlingshire. She spent most of her young adult life in Glasgow before moving to Edmonton in 1990. She studied photography at the Glasgow College of Building and Printing, and drawing and painting at Glasgow School of Art. She graduated with distinction in 2016 from the fine art certificate program through the University of Alberta Extension. She is an active member of the SSA, ASA, EAC, SNAP, CARFAC Alberta and Harcourt House Artist Run Centre where she maintains her studio practice. Yvonne has three grown children. Her eldest child has autism. She lives in Edmonton with her partner Donna.
Top Image: Falling with Uncertain Grace (detail), oil on canvas
Courtesy of the Artist