James Lavadour exhibit

Northwest artist James Lavadour brings artwork to WVC MAC Gallery

Media Contacts: Scott Bailey, art faculty, 509.682.6736, or Libby Siebens, community relations executive director, 509.682.6436 (Mon. – Thurs.).

September 29, 2015

Confluence image by James Lavadour
Confluence, Oil on Panel, 28" X 64", 2014


For Wenatchee Valley College art faculty Scott Bailey, bringing esteemed Northwest artist James Lavadour's work to the MAC Gallery in the WVC Music and Art Center is a dream come true. Bailey has been a great admirer of Lavadour's work since 1990.

Lavadour's exhibit, Land of Origin, opened September 21 at the MAC Gallery and will continue through Friday, Nov. 6. The show will be open for the October and November First Friday Art Walks on Oct. 2 and Nov. 6 from 5 to 7 p.m. The gallery is also open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. Admission is free.

"What initially impressed me about Lavadour's work when I first saw it was the way many of the paintings looked photographic at a glance, but then how the images disintegrated upon closer inspection into very abstract gestures," Bailey said. "The paintings are unexpectedly complex, making it fun, but challenging to try to discern the order in which the strokes have been applied, and the techniques, tools and media used to make them."

Lavadour has been widely recognized for his captivating abstract landscapes, often interpreted from and inspired by the geography of his lifelong home on the Umatilla Indian Reservation. Self-educated in art, he has described the process of recognizing the gestures of painting and art as their own acts of nature, similar to those that formed the landscapes his work represents. Lavadour is also the founder of Crow's Shadow Institute of the Arts, a reservation-based nonprofit organization since 1992.

Bailey says he relates to Lavadour's way of working, which evokes forces of nature such as wind and wildfire that shape the landscape through bold abstract expressionist mark-making and atmospheric layering.

The show has been made possible through a partnership with James Lavadour's gallery, PDX Contemporary Art in Portland, Ore. In addition, one of Lavadour's works is on loan to the MAC Gallery from collector Craig Hartzman of Vancouver, Wash.