Trace elements // Kelsey Stephenson

Riverbed by Kelsey Stephenson. Etching, digital, chine collé, 24x26", 2018. Image courtesy of the artist.

Event Details

Exhibition Dates:
Thursday February 20 – Friday March 20, 2020

Opening Reception: Thursday February 20, 5-8 pm
Artist will be in attendance

Artist Talk: Saturday February 22, 2pm
ASL interpretation available by request. Requests must be submitted by 5pm on February 19 by emailing or calling 204-779-6253.

These events are free to attend and open to the public.

Trace elements includes a series of small edition and monoprint works developed over the last two years, using eight larger format etching plates as the basis for imagery and printing. While some works have been printed and editioned, many utilize the traces left by ghost prints and a spontaneous approach to combining prints and plates together to create new works as monoprints. The installation divining in this exhibition uses both audio and visuals to create a sense of place within the gallery. “Alberta,” by Alex Gray, plays on a loop in the background, allowing both visual and sound to draw viewers in. As our bodies enter the landscape of the gallery, the fragile paper is disturbed, making it move and rustle. Combined, the individual squares making up divining present as a single piece as though seeing an aerial view of landscape, observing impressions left behind by thousands of years, or a short period of flood of erosion from water.


Kelsey Stephenson is an Edmonton based artist working with ideas of place-based memory and identity, and the changes imposed on landscape through human agency, intentionally or not. She works primarily with printmaking and print based installation in her practise. Kelsey’s work has been shown in solo exhibitions across western Canada and in the USA, as well as nationally and internationally within juried group exhibitions. Recent group exhibitions include the 37th Bradley International, at Bradley University in Illinois (USA), the 2nd International Print Biennial Łódz 2018, in Łódz (Poland), and the 2018 Okanagan Print Triennial, in Kelowna, BC. Kelsey currently teaches at the University of Alberta, and has previously taught at the Alberta University of the Arts (Alberta College of Art + Design).

Find more of her work online at or on Instagram at @kstephenson_print.

Artist Statement:

My recent work examines our dual relationship with place and landscape. The work draws on connections to places meaningful to myself, searching for how place has created an impact on identity, and how we in turn create changes and impressions to our immediate environment and beyond. The audio by Alex Gray in the installation divining consists of sounds and silences, thinking back to the prairies. The use of audio helps to immerse and transport viewers, pulling together the visual fragments presented in the gallery. The audio pieces draw on both water and wind as sources of inspiration. The individual works draw on the visual language of topographies and an overview of river systems. They draw on the process of monoprint, including ghost impressions, and the process of etching, carefully degrading and eroding the plate in specific places to create marks which bring to mind rivers and erosion.

Date and Time

Feb 21, 2020Mar 20, 2020, 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM