April 2–27, 2024

Mardell Rampton


Mon- Fri, 12-4 PM

For gallery access please go to the box office window and they will give you access to the gallery.

1895 Venables St.

Opening Reception
with the artistS in attendance

April 3 from 6-8pm

This event is FREE and open to the public!

Appetizers will be served and the cash bar will be open offering alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, tea, coffee and snacks.

Artist Statement

Mardell Rampton

[email protected]


Artist Statement

I make paintings from cloth, thread and pigment dyes, using a series of intricate and labour intensive processes.

My paintings are a way to create a sanctuary, a space to retreat from the noise, the distractions, the constant stimuli of our daily lives. A damaged vestibular system makes it very challenging for me to process the torrent of information – lights, motion, sound – all of these easily overwhelm me. The serene processes of working in the studio with cloth and thread help me find a grounding and calming cadence.

These paintings speak in the languages of the sea and sky here on Canada’s West Coast – blues and greys vividly intense on a summer day, misty and muted during the long rainy winter. The fluid linear patterns created during the composition of the artwork subtly evoke quiet and grounding rhythms, inviting you to breathe, to unwind, to release the grip of the noisy modern world.

My artwork progresses through a series of intricate processes. It all begins with treating the cloth with a fixative to help the dye pigments bond with the cloth. I use Japanese seaweed to thicken dye paints and mark making tools ranging from twigs to paintbrushes. Finally the cloth rests for 24 hours while the chemical bonding of dye particles to cloth completes. From this cloth, palettes for individual paintings are selected.   

I work with just one form, the rectangle, to compose these works. The rigid construct of the rectangle is softened thru the use of cloth, thru the organic shaping of each rectangle and the slow intuitive marks of the hand. Once the surface layer of rectangles is complete, I add a wash of colour and texture with thread: first with my domestic sewing machine and then stitches by hand. Selected paintings in this exhibition feature thread sculptures which further expand their narrative. The finished paintings invite you to be drawn into their tapestry of evolving stories, unfolding thru the shifting qualities of light and time.

This exhibition includes a selection of watercolours whose voices echo the cloth paintings – the similarity in colours, the marks made with a twig. For me, the exquisite gift of watercolours is the magical interaction of the pigment with the water and the paper, guided slightly by my paintbrush and my intentions but with their own say in the final outcome.