MY Place brings winter indoors 

What: Through My Window/Winter

Where: MY (Millennium) Place

When: Jan. 1-31

In other locales winter is a dour subject, fodder for metaphors by bad and good poets alike about sadness, pain and discontent.

But here in Whistler, winter is the happiest season of all. So it’s not surprising it was chosen as the theme for the exhibit currently gracing the walls of the upstairs gallery at MY Place.

The exhibit features works by local photographers Dean Cote and Leanna Rathkelly.

Cote is all over Whistler right now, with the Viseye Photo Gallery also hosting a solo show of his work on the walls of BBK’s Pub on the Benchlands. With most of his newest work tied up in that show he says there is only one previously unseen piece at MY Place, a metallic print of Green Lake.

Cote is exhibiting approximately eight images in total, all which are landscape "snapshots" taken with his minimalist Canon Elan setup, chosen for its portability and compatibility with his active lifestyle.

He said he intends to add to the exhibit as he acquires more and more winter images during the month. Speaking after an epic day of shooting a white world under a blue sky, he confirmed winter has always been a source of inspiration, remarking, "that’s why I’m here."

For Rathkelly, who is also the president of the Whistler Photographic Society, the MY Place exhibit can be added to the "dozens" of other area exhibits that have featured her work since she arrived 18 years ago.

While Cote champions the simple snapshot, Rathkelly is displaying a more intricately prepared collection of digitally enhanced photographic landscapes and mixed media works.

Several pieces appropriate antique window frames, inspiring the title of Rathkelly’s contribution: Through My Window. Behind the frames are what she describes as a "mix of photography, collage and painting."

She prepares her canvases with oils and applies photos directly with an acrylic paste.

"The painting acts as a background," she explained. "I want to continue the colours from the photograph, pull out the colours. I’m not really a painter so it’s more of a way to extend the photographs."

Her landscape shots, she said, are "very intimate," featuring close up shots of snow, which she describes as having "wonderful light in the wintertime."

But when asked if "intimate" could also describe her relationship with winter, Rathkelly coyly replied, "no."

"Because I’m Canadian I have a forced relationship with winter," she elaborated. "That’s kind of the way I’d look at it. If you can’t beat it, you might as well join it. That’s my philosophy."

Through My Window/Winter runs through the end of the month upstairs at MY (Millennium) Place. Call 604-935-8410 for more information.

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