As art lovers trickled in through the open gallery doors, Brett Mallon said was caught by two dueling feelings: relief that his work was done, and an anxiety that can only come from having a room full of people surrounded by your artwork.
Featured in the Revelstoke Visual Arts Centre’s (RVAC) main gallery, Brett Mallon’s artwork fills the walls and floor. In his biggest gallery to date, Mallon’s paintings and sculptures were a hit at the opening of RVAC’s latest gallery. As a local artist, Mallon was thrilled to have the opportunity to showcase his work for the art community that he calls home.
Producing the work occupying the main gallery was a long process for Mallon. With the work taking anywhere from 6–12 months, Mallon had to remain focused as he worked through the year to create pieces that made use of the vast space in the main gallery.
“I didn’t want it to look sparse and empty. I wanted it to look full,” said Mallon.
On the evening of the gallery’s opening, both the walls and the room were full. Mallon spent the time talking with anyone and everyone who wanted to speak with him—of which, there were many. While Mallon is naturally introverted, he said he still enjoyed talking with everyone there.
“You loosen up a bit and have a chat to people that you haven’t had a chat to before and talk to them about the work and it is very nerve wracking, but it does become fun, because people want to talk to you about it and want to find out about it,” said Mallon.
While Mallon is originally from Australia, he and his partner have called Revelstoke –and the mountains that surround it– home for several years. The town’s beauty and the natural environment around it are part of what inspires Mallon.
“I tried to steer and make it a bit more political,” said Mallon, “but it came back to nature anyway.”
Mallon’s favourite way to access nature is simple.
“Slow travel is my real passion when it comes to interacting with nature,” said Mallon.
Though Mallon is no stranger to some of the more extreme nature hobbies like long backpacking trips and fast snowboarding, lately he just needs a long walk in the mountains to clear his head and inspire his work.
Though it’s already been a big year for Mallon, his work doesn’t stop at the end of the exhibit. After some work at the LUNA festival, Mallon will be catching a flight to France where he won a residency with NG Art Creative in Provence.