Sorrento, B.C.-raised artist Donovan Rose’s latest exhibition is inspired by a recent trip to Sorrento, Italy. (Photo courtesy Barclay Martin)

Artist from Sorrento, B.C. inspired by trip to Sorrento, Italy in new exhibit

Donovan Rose presents ‘La Dolce Cabana’ at Nanaimo’s Gallery Merrick starting this week

This spring Duncan artist Donovan Rose travelled to southern Italy to visit the place his hometown was named after and gather material for his next exhibition.

During the two-week trip in April, Rose, raised in Sorrento, B.C., spent four days in coastal Sorrento, Italy just south of Naples. There he got engaged to his fiancée, fellow artist Barclay Martin, and took a lot of photos and made drawings to take back to his studio.

“Basically as soon as we got back I was able to start working on them straight away,” he said of the body of work he has since created. “And I’ve been working all the way up until this week.”

Rose will unveil those portrait and landscape paintings at Gallery Merrick on Friday, Sept. 13 and they will remain in the gallery until Sept. 20. The show is called La Dolce Cabana, a play on the Italian fashion company Dolce and Gabbana meaning “the sweet cabana.” Rose said it’s the third installment in a series of paintings which he started in 2017 based on family photos from Shuswap Lake.

“The way that I’m thinking about it is like the Dolce Cabana is kind of an imagined place, so one part of it being Sorrento, B.C. and the other part being southern Italy. So merging the two places where I grew up and where it was named for,” he explained. “And then the Dolce Cabana, the sweet cabin, is kind of a cross-reference between the cabin which we grew up going to in Sorrento on the lake in B.C., and then the beach huts, the cabanas, which used to be fairly common on the southern beaches of Italian resorts.”

In October 2018 Rose displayed the second phase of his Shuswap family photos-inspired series at Gallery Merrick. At that time he started incorporating tropical themes into those images without knowing his next stop would be the Mediterranean shore.

“The very beginnings of that work I showed here at the Ou Gallery in Duncan and so those were all direct representations of the photographs that I had of my family on the Shuswap,” he said. “And then it slowly just evolved to this mid-ground of Canadian landscape versus tropical landscape and then now it’s become fully the Italian landscape.”

Rose said he thought his series was over after the second installment and would like to say this third collection is the conclusion, but added that memories from his past always find a way into his art.

“Being super nostalgic, the Shuswap Lake and Sorrento B.C. is a massive part of my life, just in my upbringing, and I think it will always leak into the paintings, somehow,” he said.

WHAT’S ON … La Dolce Cabana opening reception at Gallery Merrick, 13B Commercial St., on Friday, Sept. 13 from 6 to 9 p.m. Show runs until Sept. 20.



arts@nanaimobulletin.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Infringing festival finds a way to dance during pandemic

Crimson Coast Dance Society holding drive-in, micro and physically distanced events July 10-19

Nanaimo sees Island’s first nurse practitioner primary care clinic

Nexus Primary Care Clinic opened in late June in south end

Nanaimo RCMP ask for help finding missing 19-year-old

Haley Murphy has not been seen since Tuesday, June 30, say police

Learning outside the classroom suits VIU’s carpentry program just fine

Vancouver Island University has partnered with KSG Consulting Ltd. to provide hands-on learning

Nanaimo chef the Sensitive Vegan takes tongue-in-cheek approach to serious cooking

Jesse Rubboli creates cassava-based recipes and shares them via YouTube and on social media

QUIZ: A celebration of dogs

These are the dog days of summer. How much do you know about dogs?

First glimpse of Canada’s true COVID-19 infection rate expected mid-July

At least 105,000 Canadians have tested positive for COVID-19 since the coronavirus was identified

Annual music event in Comox Valley celebrates online instead

Vancouver Island MusicFest holds virtual celebration set for July 10

Police ramp up efforts to get impaired drivers off B.C. roads this summer

July is dedicated to the Summer CounterAttack Impaired Driving Campaign

Migrant workers stage multi-city action for full status amid COVID-19 risks

‘COVID-19 has exacerbated an existing crisis’

Okanagan school drops ‘Rebels’ sports team name, citing links with U.S. Civil War

Name and formerly-used images “fly in the face” of the district’s human rights policy, says board chair

PHOTOS: B.C.’s top doc picks up personalized Fluevog shoes, tours mural exhibition

Murals of Gratitude exhibit includes at least one portrait of Henry alongside paintings of health-care workers

In troubled times: Independence Day in a land of confusion

Buffeted by invisible forces and just plain worn out, the United States of America celebrates its 244th birthday

Most Read