Fern Helfand, Okanagan Log Pile, 2018. photo montage on Sintra board. Collection of the artist, photo submitted

Kelowna based artist, Fern Helfand featured at departure gate

Visitors to the Kelowna International Airport may find themselves wondering just how a giant pile of logs made its way into the airport.

Actually, the logs are part of a photographic installation entitled ‘Okanagan Log Pile’ by Kelowna artist, Fern Helfand. In addition to the large scale, viewers will be struck by the three-dimensional quality that the artist has achieved by strategically mounting individual photographic panels in layers.

Related: van Gogh and other famous artists to be featured at Kelowna Art Gallery

Beyond the initial visual impact, Helfand hopes her new art installation will draw people’s attention to forestry practices in British Columbia. The piece not only represents the province’s forests as a potentially renewable resource, and the lumber industry as a major economic driver, but it also speaks to issues such as clear cutting and the loss of the forest.

Regardless of how visitors interpret the piece, this twenty-five-foot-long installation will give passengers a reason to pause on their way to the departures gate.

Okanagan Log Pile is on view until February 2019 at the Kelowna International Airport.

Related: Aboriginal artists featured at Kelowna Art Gallery

Fern Helfand received an MFA from the University of Florida and has since held teaching positions at University of Western Ontario, Universiti Sains Malaysia in Penang and the University of British Columbia. Her photo-based work addressing environmental concerns and the medium of photography itself has been exhibited across Canada and internationally. She currently resides in Kelowna.

For more information about current exhibitions, public programming or special events, please visit the Kelowna Art Gallery online at www.kelownaartgallery.com.

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