A Fine Balance
Neilson was interested in contrast and spillover between precision and flow - comparing the spirit and energy of the forest as it may have been seen and felt one hundred years ago, to the more scientific views of snippets and close section studies, as if through a camera lens in today's world
Exhibited at Kelowna Public Art Gallery in 2015 and in the provincial "Fences" exhibition at Two Rivers Public Art Gallery in Prince George in 2018
The fence border of the park helps define a zone where we should try not to interfere with intricately balanced fragile ecosystems. In a similar way, framing views from different corners of the forest draws my attention to diversity without removing anything from the place where it belongs. The fence is intended to separate nature from development and maintain balance in delicate ecosystems. Regardless of these borders, nature continues to overflow into surrounding areas and urbanization continues to encroach upon the parks.
"I wanted to compare the energy of the forests in the past with glimpses of potential still contained within our contemporary fenced parks. The central rectangular segments are arranged around an axis to reflect a fragile balance, and also to suggest scientific observations of conservationists. These sections are also boxed because of the "Preserves" theme of the Kelowna Art Gallery exhibit with its preserve jars all around the gallery windows. There are some deliberate hidden tributes connected to the history of this place, and the history of art for conservation - including Joan Burbridge with her flower book and its focus on little close-up images, Emily Carr and her connection to the spirit in trees, and the local Syilx nation with their concept of a nature spiral (but turned up on end and viewed vertically in balance).