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Mara Korkola: Dusk to Night

Douglas Udell Gallery
Edmonton AB – Nov 4-18

Chris Anderson, History of Square (2006),

Mara Korkola, title (2006), oils [Douglas Udell Gallery, Edmonton AB, Nov 4-18]

In her first exhibition at the Douglas Udell Gallery, Toronto artist Mara Korkola presents fascinating night glimpses of traffic on the outskirts of towns. Born in 1965 in Marathon, Ontario, Korkola describes the margins of Canadian towns and cities: those indefinable stretches of telephone poles, billboards, fast food restaurants and obscure service centres.

The roads, dotted with the glow of headlights and transport trucks, are a dominant compositional and narrative force. But like “Patsy Cline in oils,” the tiny paintings juxtapose the thoroughfares with the heart-breaking beauty of sunsets and evening skies. In many images, the lights alone create strands of jewels against the darkness. Her paintings have been described as “… moody miniature noctures of the highway at night, glazed with wanderlust” (Globe and Mail).

Korkola holds an MFA from the University of Texas at San Antonio, a BFA from Wichita State University (Kansas) and is a graduate of the Ontario College of Art and Design (Toronto). She has been the recipient of numerous Ontario Arts Council grants. Her work has been exhibited in group and solo exhibitions both nationally and internationally, including Painting as Paradox at Artists Space in New York, Synthetic Psychosis at the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art, Toronto, and Commuter, a comprehensive solo exhibition of her No place series of paintings at the MacLaren Art Centre in Barrie, Ontario.

Mia Johnson

 Tue, Nov 7, 2006