Desiree Wagner is a visual artist based in the Okanagan region of British Columbia. She received her Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree in 2012 from The University of British Columbia Okanagan. Most recently, Desiree has studied and trained in the field of Art Therapy. Throughout her art therapy experiences, Desiree has been drawn to facilitating various therapeutic arts activities with the elderly population. She is very passionate about making art and creativity accessible to those with limited physical mobility, as well as those struggling with degenerative diseases and mental health issues. Using an “art as therapy,” approach is a way of connecting with various individuals who are struggling in different aspects of their life. It allows her clients to feel empowered, purposeful, validated and SEEN. Desiree’s approach to working with her clients stems from an authentic, compassionate person centered approach, that always includes humor, a genuine interest in the person’s life story as well as a non judgmental and safe space where the client will feel they can talk and create anything they desire.
Desiree uses natural materials from the environment and embeds them into her canvas in a vibrant, textural and authentic way.
Themes that are explored through her painting practice include, universal laws, consciousness, nature, fossilization, sedimentation, vibrant color palettes, as well as using creativity as a healing agent and modality.
Her description for the Mineral Series, encapsulates the theory behind her work, “I chose to do a series of paintings that represent the energetic pieces of the earth’s fossils, sediments, and geometric contours. I have incorporated found minerals into the paintings by crushing and embedding them into the paint and canvas. My painting process mirrors the process that the elements of the earth undergo over the course of time. This process requires numerous layers of paint films and paint skins as well as organic materials that are inserted and embedded into the canvas; much like how soil, water, organic materials compress and fossilize over time. I wanted to create a “fossilistic” experience on the canvas in which passages of paint are trapped and embedded within water, mediums and the canvas. I feel that this work successfully represents the energy of these sacred minerals that have been created and aged over the immense course of the earth’s existence..