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Local Colour and Woman In-Between - Wade Kotelo

Dale, 2011  by Wade Kotelo


Lost Standing, 2009, 55 x 51 ¼ , acrylic on canvas

April 26 - June 18

Local Colour  and Woman In-Between– Portraits by Wade Kotelo 

Representation of the human form is a thread that has run through my work for as long as I can remember.  The physical complexity of the body and the nuance of personality offer never-ending challenges for me in the paint.  Every portrait I do, I do for different reasons; some are commissioned for occasions, some are emotional gestures, and some simply had to be painted.  I view people, and people doing people things, as the cultural ‘time and place’ that must be recorded in the patient and intimate language of paint.  Some of the portraits present a contextual twist to more fully express character, but in most  you will discover a person from a real ‘time and place’.  In all you will find a person whose existence you can consider, and in doing so make the world less of a lonely place.



     Wade Kotelo was born in Thompson, Manitoba but grew up in five different towns through Manitoba and Ontario, as his father transferred to communities in his work with the Hudson Bay Company.   Although the hometowns and schools were not consistent, Wade’s interest in art was.  He drew and painted throughout childhood, enjoying the pursuit both in and out of school.  After high school, he attended the University of Manitoba in Winnipeg earning a Fine Arts Honours degree.


     Wade continued drawing and painting while working, and in 1993 moved to Saskatchewan to enroll in the Arts Education program at the University of Regina.  He graduated with a Bachelor of Education degree in 1996.  Kotelo worked as a substitute teacher in Regina for a year before being hired by the Estevan Comprehensive School Board to teach grades nine through twelve Arts Education and Visual Art. 


     Wade is a successful, career teacher in the field of visual art and continues to enjoy the challenges associated with bringing an ambitious, creative art program to his students.  In his time in Estevan, Kotelo has also established himself as a working artist.  He has entered several local adjudicated shows, winning once, and has been honoured with exhibitions at the Estevan Art Gallery and the Mann Art Gallery in Prince Albert. 


     As an artist Wade is continually looking for new painting challenges.  Perhaps as a result of the many moves, and many new acquaintances he has experienced in his life, he has developed an interest in people and their stories.  Portraiture and the 'contextual exploration of the human experience' have become the thematic paths he enjoys walking.  Kotelo maintains that everyone has several selves, some hidden and some public.  Much of his work is an exploration those selves, be they real or imagined.