Holly Ward is an artist who isn’t afraid to delve into an array of materials and processes to bring a project to life. She is an interdisciplinary creator who is just as at home with sculpture, multi-media installation, and architecture, as she is with drawing and video mediums.

Her most recent body of work is entitled Fluid States, and it is being presented at the Kelowna Art Gallery until July 17, 2022. In this exhibition, Ward deploys a series of creative practices aimed towards developing a deeper understanding of water, and our connection to it.

“This timely work calls attention to our need for a fundamental shift in the way we think about natural resources,” says Christine May, curator at the Kelowna Art Gallery. “Holly Ward’s use of innovative materials and unconventional display creates a beautiful and thought-provoking piece that we’re excited to share with visitors.”

At the heart of Fluid States is a massive drawing on fabric that runs through the centre of the exhibition. Semi-transparent silk is draped over four metal supports that are anchored in concrete fragments on the floor. Holly Ward created the flowing lines and colours using a ‘floating ink’ technique — carefully manipulating drops of ink that remain on the surface of water, before being absorbed up into the material. She collected the water used in this process from Louis Creek (Tk’emlúps/Secwepemc territory), a watershed connected to the North Thompson River. This watershed is one of over 1,300 systems in direct proximity to the Trans Mountain pipeline, currently under expansion to triple bitumen exports overseas.

In addition to the large textile installation, visitors will encounter a collection of ceramic sculptures, and a video showing footage Ward captured along the Heffley-Louis Creek, North Thompson, and Fraser Rivers.

Gallery patrons are invited to make connections of their own as they explore the installation. Fluid States is on view through July 17, 2022.

The Kelowna Art Gallery is located at 1315 Water Street, in downtown Kelowna, B.C.