By Maya-Roisin Slater
VANCOUVER — Rebecca Chaperon is an artist whose paintings explore the darker side of childish whimsy. She creates beautifully layered acrylic landscapes with bold geometric shapes balancing out the ethereal aspects of her work. On a miserably rainy Tuesday she invited us into her Main Street studio to offer creative refuge from the bad weather with her mystical paintings.
Chaperon is heavily influenced by surrealism and a fascination with the often difficult to discover inner creative landscape of people.
“I’ve always loved surrealist artists, there’s a narrative they create painting in a way that illustrates something without coming right out and saying it. There’s a lot of mystery involved which resonates with me the most in terms of style.”
Her upcoming gallery show at Initial Gallery will feature this surrealist work as well as new experimentation with sculptures and literary collaboration. The sculptures will interact with large installation paintings covering the gallery walls, adding a three dimensional element to her work.
“The show is called Eccentric Gardens. We’re going to have sculptural installations, which is new and exciting for me. I’ll also be pairing some paintings with poems by American writer Hannah Stevenson. We parallel each other in so many ways. I love her writing and the imagery she conjures really resonates with me.”
The show will feature never before seen works from Chaperon. These paintings explore new dimensional perspectives, by subverting the conventional view of realistic scenes creating alluring timeless spaces chalked full of intimate details and bold grounding shapes.
“The Eccentric Gardens pieces offer a birds eye view without a horizon line which is new for me. Often when I paint I always have sky and land. This is all land. The paintings are packed with many different elements; I like to call it maximalism instead of minimalism. The new pieces represent creative places in our personal landscape that are often times hard to glimpse and re-visit.”
Over the past year Chaperon has taken the bold step away from her day job to focus completely on her artistic career. In this time she’s produced the new work for her upcoming exhibition and published a cute little ABC book called Eerie Dearies starring charming and occasionally headless characters with alphabetic excuses for missing school like astral projection and becoming a yeti. This year Chaperon hopes to put all she’s learned to use as she grows on her artistic path.
“I’ve learned a lot, but haven’t really had time to apply it. As an artist you’re always trying new things out, seeing what works, what doesn’t and discovering the best way forward. This next year my goal is to simplify what I’m doing and make a lot of bigger paintings, and I’m really excited to get started with that.”
You can see Chaperon’s new work in her show at Initial Gallery October 24 to November 15. The opening reception is on October 28 (6 p.m. to 9 p.m.) at Initial Gallery . If you’re interested in attending, you can RSVP here: https://www.facebook.