Carollyne Yardley is an interdisciplinary artist, speculative designer, and squirrel lover living and working on Southern Vancouver Island on the traditional territories of the Lək̓ʷəŋən People, known today as the Esquimalt and Songhees Nations.
Yardley’s practice examines the changing relationships between humans and nonhumans in our urban environments. Humans living in urban spaces interact daily with nonhumans and we need to reimagine how to share space with different species as cities spread out into the natural landscape and technology reshapes our existence. Yardley hopes to help change the dominant idea that it’s our space, and activate human empathy in order to consider the non-humans in the equation. The objective of her work is not concerned with the assimilation of animals as humans, but with a levelling of hierarchy.
Yardley’s art practice translates the visual, sonic, gestural, and social data she’s collected by observing urban animals into a space for consideration. After she rescued a dying squirrel in her yard, she was compelled to create portraits of hybrid-humans in an effort to break down the barrier between humans and nonhumans – and thus, Squirrealism was born.
Squirrealism is a neologism used in her practice to narrate origin stories of transformation that examine the permeable boundaries between human and nonhuman systems and imagines possible futures in hybrid human development. Her oil paintings and 3D projects portray a utopian/dystopian future of surreal entities who emerge from damaged worlds.
Squirrels became a vehicle for collaboration when First Nations artist Chief Rande Cook (Kwakwaka’wakw) invited Yardley to paint his portrait. Cook carved a squirrel mask for Yardley and they exchanged these two gifts. Chief Rande Cook Squirrel (2014) shows Cook as a hybrid human-squirrel wearing his traditional regalia and carved thunderbird mask (Cook’s ancient ancestor) inspired by the indigenous story of Squirrel and Thunderbird as recorded by George Hunt in 1899. A creative fusion of their works further developed, exploring ideas about kinship, personal identity and friendship.
Yardley’s latest research into the biology of the Eastern Grey Squirrel has led her to discover they have excellent dichromatic colour vision that is mediated by green and blue cones. What a Squirrel Sees (2018) simulates the colour vision of the Grey Squirrel to examine the subjective reality of our own senses and to better imagine their worldview. My Hair Squirrel Mask (2012-2018), explores what it would be like to be a squirrel in a tactile sense by using Yardley’s own hair to create a furry outer layer. Her series mtSQRL speculates the convergence of human and squirrel DNA. In Squirrel Co-Lab (2018), Yardley learned how frequently squirrels mark their territory. Sharing urban space with non-humans has become a contentious issue for many humans. Yardley believes we can come to know someone else through experience, which can promote new forms of cohabitation.
Raised on Vancouver Island, Carollyne Yardley has an art history degree from the University of Victoria and is currently working on a Master of Fine Arts degree at Emily Carr University of Art and Design. Her work has exhibited across Canada in Montréal (Papier Montréal), Victoria, Vancouver, and Toronto (Art Toronto), as well as internationally in Seattle (Seattle Art Fair). Carollyne Yardley has garnered all levels of press in Canada, featured by Canadian Art Magazine, Border Crossings, The Globe and Mail, The National Post, CTV News, CBC Radio, and the covers of several books and magazines. She was also successful in maintaining her registered trademark Carollyne® after being subjected to an expungement proceeding by a large U.S. toy manufacturer.
She is represented by Fazakas Gallery (Vancouver, BC), and Madrona Gallery (Victoria, BC).
#synanthropes #squirrealism #transgene #collaboration #urbananimals #sharedspace #biodiversity #symbiogenesis #sympoiesis #kinship
2008 – 2021 Carollyne Yardley Omnimedia
1997-2012 Founder, Co-owner, Creative Director, Star Global Advanced IT Corp. Ltd.
2021 MFA Candidate Emily Carr University of Art and Design, Canada
1997 BA Psychology and Art History (Double Major), University of Victoria, Canada
Madrona Gallery, Victoria BC
Fazakas Gallery, Vancouver BC
Yardley, Carollyne. “Holobionts: Making and Living through Squirrealism”. Ecocene: Cappadocia Journal of Environmental Humanities, vol. 2, no. 1, July 2021, pp. 109-17, doi:10.46863/ecocene.36.
Yardley, Carollyne. “Becoming-squirrel,” becoming-Feral: a bestiarum vocabulum. Objet-a Creative Studio, Glasgow. (forthcoming)
2021 Colours of Summer XII, Madrona Gallery, Victoria BC
2020 Living Room, Fazakas Gallery, Vancouver BC
2020 Colours of Summer XI, Madrona Gallery, Victoria BC
2019 Unstoppable, Winchester Galleries, Victoria BC
2019 Shape/Colour/Form, Winchester Galleries, Victoria, BC.
2018 Sole Train to Night Market, Fluevog Shoes, Victoria BC
2017 In the Mood for Love, Poly Culture Art Centre, Vancouver BC
2017 FIVE, Winchester Galleries, Victoria, BC
2017 SHEILA: Women, Art, and Production, Fazakas Gallery, Vancouver BC
2016 All Together is the Best Example, Fazakas Gallery, Vancouver BC
2016 Divergent Convergence, Fazakas Gallery, Vancouver BC
2016 Imaginary Friends, Open Space Arts Society, Victoria BC
2015 SHE: Diversity in Feminism, Fazakas Gallery, Vancouver BC
2015 Winter, Winchester Galleries, Victoria BC
2015 Co-Mix Art, Martin Bachelor Gallery, Victoria BC
2015 Pride in Art: The Queer Truth & Nothing But, Fifty-Fifty Arts Collective, Victoria BC
2014 TD Paint In, Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, Victoria BC
2013 Difference and Repetition, Slide Room Gallery, Victoria BC
2013 #Strangelings: Paintings by Pixel Wizards, Massey Gallery, Victoria BC
2013 Curiouser: Contemporary Responses to Alice in Wonderland, Fifty-Fifty Arts Collective, Victoria BC
2013 Artist in Residence: House Tour, Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, Victoria BC
2013 Colours of Summer, Madrona Gallery, Victoria BC
2013 TD Paint In, Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, Victoria BC
2012 Pride Art Exhibition, Madrona Gallery, Victoria BC
2012 Artists with Lu Jun Wind Lotus, Apartment Gallery, Victoria BC
2011 Never Dine Alone, The Sculpture Studio, Victoria BC
2013 Artist in Residence: House Tour, Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, Victoria BC
2012 Christmas Salon and Exhibition, Apartment Gallery, Victoria, BC
2012 Christmas Small Works, Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, Victoria, BC
2012 Summer Small Works Exhibition, Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, Victoria, BC
2012 Sidney Fine Art Show, Sidney, BC
2012 Sooke Fine Art Show, Sooke, BC
2012 TD Paint In, Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, Victoria, BC
2012 Art Rainbow, INDEXG, Toronto, ON
2012 Boudoir, Victoria Emerging Art Gallery, Victoria BC
2012 Never Dine Alone (curated by Carollyne Yardley), The Sculpture Studio, Victoria BC
2018 Art Toronto, Fazakas Gallery, Toronto, Canada
2018 Seattle Art Fair, Fazakas Gallery, Seattle, USA.
2018 Papier Montréal, Fazakas Gallery, Montréal, Canada.
2017 Art Toronto, Fazakas Gallery; Toronto, Canada.
2016 Art Toronto, Fazakas Gallery; Toronto, Canada.
2017 Walsh, Andrea. KəˌlabəˈrāSH(ə)n Mask, exhibition text
2016 Shrumm, Regan. “Connecting a Collection,” The Art of A. Banana UnPeeled, AGGV & Open Space, pp. 20-21.
2014 Yardley, Carollyne. “Trademark Carollyne,” Youtube
2013 Yardley, Carollyne. “Squirrealism,” ISBN 978-0-9919419-0-2
2013 Coach House Books, Fall 2013 Catalogue, Image Cover
2013 Wilson, Keiran. Imitations of Eternity, St. Gengulphus’ Publishing, Image Cover
2013 Focus Magazine: Cover, Vol. 25., No. 5, (Feb)
2012 Focus Magazine, Cover, Vol. 25, No. 3 (Dec)
2012 Monday Magazine, Cover 3829 (July)
2012 Willey, Philip. “Days in the Life,” Illus. by Carollyne Yardley pg. 13, Ahndai Books
2012 Koubaa, Bart. “De Brooklyn Club”, Querido Publishing, Image Cover
2013 Scotch Malt Whisky Society, Calgary, Alberta, Canada. (Painting).
2020 Newton, Steve. ” Unearthing: art by Valérie Chartrand, Robert Morris, Ben Oswald, Suzanne Paleczny, Jennie Vallis, Carollyne Yardley.” The Georgia Straight. Dec 11, 2020. Weblog.
2020 Grauer, Perrin. “The eerie objects and compositions are grounded firmly in reflections on the blurry boundary between the human and non-human worlds.” Emily Carr University of Art and Design. Nov 02, 2020. Weblog.
2020 “Art under lockdown: Vancouver art exhibitions entered around understanding change.” Curated Tastes. Oct 14, 2020. Weblog.
2020 Lederman, Marsha. “Covid-19 masks make meaningful, whimsical debuts at art galleries in Vancouver and Banff.” Globe and Mail. Oct 4, 2020.
2018 Walsh, Meeka. “Papier 18 | Editor’s Picks Day 2,” Border Crossings. Weblog.
2017 Slavens, Kerry. “Do Tell,” Yam Magazine Jan/Feb: pp 74. Print
2016 Balzer, David. “7 Best Bets for Art Toronto – Mask at Fazakas Gallery,” Canadian Art Magazine. Weblog.
2016 Landau, Emily. “The 10 most exciting artists to check out at Art Toronto,” Toronto Life. Weblog.
2016 Blazenhoff, Rusty, “Rusty’s Electric Dreams,” Inbox Zine. Weblog.
2016 White, Laurie. “Seriously Silly, Horse Heads and Flower Beards in the Work of Carollyne Yardley,” Analogue Magazine. Print.
2016 Wright, Andy. “From Portrait Painters to College Applicants, Squirrel Obsessives Through the Ages,” Atlas Obscura. Weblog.
2015 Lundy, Susan. “Secrets and Lives: Carollyne Yardley, Artist,” Boulevard Magazine. Print.
2015 Thomson, John. “Canadian Artist Goes Squirrely,” DZine Trip Design Magazine. Weblog.
2015 Blazenhoff, Rusty. “Banksy Squirrel Character with Mask by Carollyne Yardley,” Blazenfluff May 19. Weblog.
2014 Amos, Robert. “First Nations Art, meet squirrels,” (review) Time Colonist. Print.
2014 Cino, Kate. “Alcheringa Gallery presents Ravenous with Rande Cook and Carollyne Yardley.” Art Openings. Weblog.
2014 Willey, Philip. “Ravenous: Carollyne Yardley and Rande Cook,” Exhibit-V. Weblog
2014 Madden, Aaren. “Ravenous, Alcheringa Gallery,” (review) Focus Magazine. Print.
2014 Simcoe, Luke. “B.C. artist battles Mattel’s American Girl over trademark,” Metro News. Weblog.
2014 Fisher, Gavin. “B.C artist facing down Mattel in expensive copyright fight.” Globe and Mail. Weblog.
2014 McCulloch, Sandra. “Artist goes after U.S. giant Mattel over trademark to her own name,” Times Colonist. Print.
2014 Hopper, Tristin. “Toymaker Mattel fighting Canadian ‘Squirrealism’ painter Carollyne Yardley over trademark to her own name,” National Post. Print.
2014 Lus, Steven. “It’s Caroline vs. Carollyne in a fight at the Canadian Intellectual Property Office,” CBC News. Web log.
2014 Editorial. “Canadian Art Fights Mattel’s American Girl Over Trademark,” Huffington Post. Web log.
2014 Wahl, David. “Here’s an awkward family photo for the ages,” Archie McPhee’s Endless Geyser of AWESOME! Web log.
2013 Schlauch, Matthew. “#Strangelings: Paintings by Pixel Wizards,” Snap’d Magazine. Print.
2013 Willey, Philip. “Carollyne Yardley, Jose Brand and Paul Dowd at AGGV,” Exhibit-V. Weblog.
2013 Smart, Amy. “Creative process shines, digitally and otherwise,” (review) Times Colonist Print.
2013 Wahl, David. “Our recent post about Carollyne’s Saint Squirrel and Pope Pinenuts,” Archie McPhee’s Endless Geyser of AWESOME! Weblog.
2013 Lindsay, Teresa. “Revealing an Incredible Journey through Pop Surrealism,” Vic42.com. Weblog.
2013 Beneteau, Nicole. “Artists Take a Crack at Carroll Classic,” Nexus Newspaper. Print.
2013 Jones, Kate. “Romancing the Squirrel in the Studio.” Pennello Lane, Creative Canadian Women, Weblog.
2013 Madden, Aaren. “The Unbearable Lightness of Squirrels,” Editorial. Focus Magazine. Print.
2013 Focus Magazine, Advertisement, Jan. pg. 13 Print.
2013 Threlfall, John. “Culture Goes Pop,” Editorial. Yam Magazine. Print.
2012 Willey, Philip. “Days in the Life,” Illus. by Carollyne Yardley, pg. 13, Ahndai Books. Weblog.
2012 Wahl, David. “Hey Look, It’s a Gingerbread Squirrel!” Archie McPhee’s Endless Geyser of AWESOME! Weblog.
2012 Green, MaryEllen. “Artist Is Nuts for Squirrels,” Monday Magazine.Print.
2012 Wahl, David. “As Many of You Probably Know by Now, We Have A Soft Spot for Squirrels | Archie McPhee’s Endless Geyser of AWESOME!” Weblog
2012 Patience, Kaitlyn. “Artist Spotlight on Carollyne Yardley,” Pamplemousse! Weblog.
2012 Wolters, Shanice. ” The Girl with the Squirrels,” Weblog.
2011 Wood, Christine. “The Business of Art,” Kendall Wood. Weblog
2011 Robert, Amos. “Treasures of Oak Bay Galleries,” Times Colonist. Print.
2011 DHaem, Jim. “Geisha Girl Squirrel (and QR Code),” QR Code Artist. Weblog
2011 “Nosey Neighbour at the Nanaimo Wine Festival,” Weblog
2011 Anita.”Don’t Miss This Squirrelly Art Show at Ferris’ Oyster Bar,” ScrimporSplurge.ca. Weblog
2010 Quiroz, Efren. “Carollyne Yardley: Artist of the Month,” Exhibit-V. Weblog
TELEVISION, YOUTUBE, RADIO
2016 Johnson, Andrew. “Victoria artist wins trademark name fight,” CTV News. Television
2015 de Blois, Maude. “Paroles d’artists,” CILS.FM 107.9. Radio
2014 Quiroz, Efren. “Ravenous: Opening Reception,” Exhibit-V. Youtube
2014 Quiroz, Efren. “Interview with Carollyne Yardley & Rande Cook,” Exhibit-V. Youtube
2014 Stanton, Kylie. “Vancouver Island artist takes on U.S. toymaker over name,” Global News. Television
2014 Grieves, Chandler. “Victoria artist takes on toy giant,” CTV Vancouver Island. Television
2014 Rankin, Eric. “Mattel’s American Girl name fight,” CBC News. Television
2014 Off, Carol. “Canadian artist takes on giant toymaker Mattel,” As It Happens, CBC Radio
2014 Elgersma, Karen. “Victoria Whisky Festival, Society Squirrel Painting,” Shaw. Television
2014 Quiroz, Efren. “Your Eyes on the Visual Arts Report” May 21, 2014. (2:37-4:42). YouTube
2013 Sawatsky, Adam. “#Strangelings: Paintings by Pixel Wizards,” CTV News. Television
2013 Kahan, Dan. “The Kahan Show: Carollyne Yardley as the Therap-artist,” Shaw Television
2013 Quiroz, Efren. “Your Eyes on the Visual Arts – #Strangelings: Paintings by Pixel Wizards,” Exhibit-V. Youtube.
2013 Steele, Jen. “#Strangelings Video,” Youtube.
2013 Sawatsky, Adam. “Romancing the Squirrel,” CTV News. Television
2013 Quiroz, Efren. “Your Eyes on the Visual Arts – Romancing the Squirrel,” Exhibit-V. Youtube
2013 Sawatsky, Adam. “Eye on the Arts – Romancing the Squirrel,” CFAX1070. Radio
2013 Intro Segment at Art Gallery of Greater Victoria. “26th Annual TD PAINT IN,” CTV News. Youtube.
2013 Quiroz, Efren. “Your Eyes on the Visual Arts – Christmas Salon at The Apartment Gallery,” Exhibit-V. Youtube
2012 Sawatsky, Adam. “ TD Moss Street Paint In,” CTV News Television
2012 Sawatsky, Adam. “Eye on the Arts – TD Paint In,” CFAX1070 Radio
2012 Bramble, Eric. “The Growler Hour with Eric Bramble: Interview with Carollyne Yardley,” 29er Radio. Podcast.
2012 Quiroz, Efren. “Your Eyes on the Visual Arts – Grand Opening of The Apartment Gallery,” Exhibit-V. Youtube
2011 Quiroz, Efren. “Your Eyes on the Visual Arts – Pride Art Exhibition, Madrona Gallery,” Exhibit-V. Youtube
2011 Quiroz, Efren. “Your Eyes on the Visual Arts – Never Dine Alone, Sculpture Studio” Exhibit-V. Youtube
2011 Yardley, Carollyne. “Never Dine Alone,” Carollyne Yardley Omnimedia. YouTube.
2011 Quiroz, Efren. “Your Eyes on the Visual Arts – Friends & Other Funny Folks, Red Art Gallery” Exhibit-V. Youtube
2011 Quiroz, Efren. “Your Eyes on the Visual Arts – Secret Squirrels Show, Ferris’ Upstairs” Exhibit-V. Youtube
2010 Quiroz, Efren. “Your Eyes on the Visual Arts – Big Eyed Ladies Show, Black Olive” Exhibit-V.ca. Youtube
2010 Elgersma, Karen. “Art interview with Carollyne Yardley,” Shaw. Television
GUEST SPEAKER AND PANELS
2016 Guest Speaker, Sidney Fine Art Show Opening Night, Mary Winspear Centre
2016 Guest Speaker. Sidney Fine Art Show Opening Night, Mary Winspear Centre
2015 Guest Speaker. Community Arts Council of Greater Victoria, Victoria College of Art
2013 Guest Presenter. Studio 30, Les Passmore Centre
2013 Guest Presenter. Saanich Peninsula Arts and Crafts Society, Mary Winspear Centre
2012 Guest Speaker. “Art and Community,” PechaKucha, Volume 11, DIY Edition, Victoria Event Centre
2012 Artist in Residence, Massey Gallery, Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, Integrate Arts Walk
2013 Yardley, Carollyne, “Strangelings: Paintings by Pixel Wizards.” Art Gallery of Greater Victoria’s Massey Gallery. Victoria, BC
2011 Yardley, Carollyne, “Never Dine Alone.” The Sculpture Studio, Victoria, BC. Weblog.
2014 Community Arts Council of Greater Victoria, 15th annual LOOK Show.
2012 Victoria Emerging Art Awards, Victoria Emerging Art Gallery. Weblog.
2018 Yardley, Carollyne. “Squirrel Dichromatic Colour Vision.” Youtube.
2015 Yardley, Carollyne. “Trademark Carollyne.” Youtube.
2016 Art Print Donation, UnWined, Make a Wish Foundation, Vancouver Island.
2016 Art Image Donation, A Fundraiser for Syrian refugees. Weblog.
2016 Celebrity Waiter, Tip a Fool, Greater Victoria Citizens Counseling Center. Weblog.
2015 Participating Artist, 7th Annual Blue Bridge Theatre Fundraiser, Winchester Galleries. Weblog.
2015 Participating Artist, ArtBeat Vancouver. Website
2015 Chair Artist, Take A Seat for Habitat, Habitat for Humanity (Restore) Fundraiser. Weblog.
2014 Tree Judge, BC Children’s Hospital, Festival of Trees, Victoria Conference Centre.
2013 Tree Judge, BC Children’s Hospital, Festival of Trees, Victoria Conference Centre.
2013 Art Donation, Visions Gala, Victoria Hospitals Foundation.
2013 Art Donation, CNIB Eye Appeal. Weblog.
2013 Celebrity Waiter, Tip a Fool, Greater Victoria Citizens Counseling Center. Weblog.
2012 Lady Gaga, Float Character, Oak Bay Avenue Tea Party. Weblog.
2012 Exhibitor, Victoria Steam Exposition. Weblog.