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Kootenay Life Obelisk

Bent Grasses

Year: 2019
Medium: aluminum
Price: $50,000
Dimensions: 12' x 16' x 6'


Illarion Gallant

Victoria, BC

The creator of minimalist renditions of nature in sometimes colourful, sometimes uniform, man-made materials returns with another beautifully stark, beguiling sculpture readily identifiable as his own.

Gallant debuted in Castlegar in 2016 with two powerful entries. Both Flower Power – recently gracing the western entrance to Nelson as part of the regional expansion of Sculpturewalk – and Splash showcased Gallant’s ability to sculpt large-scale pieces that harmonize wonderfully with their surroundings. His entry the following year entitled Grass Blades was equally impressive in its ability to do the same, simultaneously- as always – presenting arresting contrast too.

Gallant continues with the theme of grasses here. As his statement notes, he “appreciates the lyrical line and poetic gesture” of them, to say nothing of their presence in many parts of the province.

Bent Grasses consists of nine pieces of both six-inch and four-inch aluminum pipe with varying measures of bend in the impressive vertical juxtaposition of them. At the top, each curves dramatically as if bowed by a strong wind flattening the tops in intricate choreography.

The installation is bold in its scope and vision. It is austere, unadorned yet complex too, wonderfully imagined and realized. As Gallant says, “In simplicity there is complexity too, and I like to think my sculptures embody this idea.”

He attended the Emily Carr College of Art and Design in Vancouver during the mid-eighties. In that time period he also studied stone sculpture at the Kunst Academy in Karlsruhe, Germany. A participant at the illustrious Lindabrunn Sculpture Symposium outside of Vienna while overseas, Gallant received his Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Emily Carr College of Art and Design in 1996.

He resides in Victoria, working with partner Twyla Rusnak as joint principals of the sculpture and landscape architectural design/build firm Rusnak Gallant Ltd.

Gallant’s sculptures are permanently installed in numerous venues across British Columbia, Alberta and Ontario, always eye-catching and harmonious in either an urban or natural landscape.

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