Carollyne is a visual artist and formerly a creative director, and her work is informed by both these disciplines. She received a Bachelor of Art from the University of Victoria, where she completed a Double Major in Psychology, and History in Art. She also studied at the Visual Arts Department (Faculty of Fine Art, University of Victoria), Victoria College of Art, and The Ryder Studio School in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
Carollyne’s artistic practise includes painting, drawing, photography, collaboration, fibre art, digital media, and collections database modelling. Her body of work visually interprets a cross species dialogue by translating the visual, sonic, gestural, and social data she’s collected by observing the free range Grey Squirrels (Sciurus carolinensis) in her urban garden. Her research methods began when she found a dying squirrel in her yard. A short while later the elements of the experience were transmuted into her artwork – and thus, Squirrealism was born.
Squirrealism is a self-coined term used to propose the unexpected interconnections between humans and non-humans within a shared urban landscape. Her portraits of imaginary hybrid-humans aims to break down the barrier between humans and non-humans to create dialogue. Her works are not intended to be a projection of self, but as a non-hierarchical, non-binary consideration of being, a recognition of “we” in the evolution of universal consciousness, and our shared interconnected subconscious. Carollyne’s artworks of squirrels as hybrid-humans are not concerned with assimilation of animals as humans, but with a levelling of hierarchy.
Squirrealism became a vehicle for collaboration when First Nations artist Chief Rande Cook (Kwakwaka’wakw) asked her to paint his portrait as a hybrid human-squirrel wearing his traditional regalia and carved thunderbird mask (Rande’s ancient ancestor). Rande then carved a squirrel mask for Carollyne, and they exchanged these two gifts. Carollyne’s artwork reminded Rande of the indigenous story Squirrel and Thunderbird as recorded by George Hunt in 1899. Cook’s origin stories supported her research into the importance of kinship networks and interspecies relationships between non-humans and humans. Their mask and painting collaborations explore friendship, cultural exchange, and identity, and were featured at several two-person exhibitions; Ravenous (2014), Shapeshifting (2017), Art Toronto (2017), plus works on paper at Papier Montréal (2018), and the Seattle Art Fair (2018).
Carollyne Yardley has garnered all levels of press in Canada, featured in The Globe and Mail, The National Post, CTV News, CBC Radio, online weblogs, 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 Winchester Galleries (Victoria, BC), and Fazakas Gallery (Vancouver, BC).
– University of Victoria, Visual Arts Department
– University of Victoria, Bachelor of Arts, (concurrent Double Major Psychology, History in Art)
– Ryder Studio School, New Mexico
– Fazakas Gallery Booth, Seattle Art Fair 2018,| Art Fair, Seattle WA, USA
– Fazakas Gallery Booth, Papier | Art Fair, Montreal QC
– Fazakas Gallery Booth, Art Toronto | Toronto International Art Fair, Toronto ON
– Fazakas Gallery Booth, Art Toronto | Toronto International Art Fair, Toronto ON
TWO PERSON EXHIBITIONS
– Shapeshifting: Rande Cook (K’alapa) and Carollyne Yardley, Fazakas Gallery, Vancouver BC
– Ravenous: Rande Cook (K’alapa) and Carollyne Yardley, Alcheringa Gallery, Victoria BC
– Romancing the Squirrel, Apartment Gallery, Victoria BC
SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS
— FIVE (Vicky Christou, Jeremy Mangan, Neil McLelland, Sean Mills, Carollyne Yardley), Winchester Galleries, Victoria, BC, Canada.
– SHEILA: Women, Art, and Production, Fazakas Gallery, Vancouver, BC.
– Divergent Convergence, Fazakas Gallery, Vancouver BC
– Imaginary Friends, curated by Ted Hiebert, Open Space Arts Society, Victoria BC
– Selected Works, Winchester Galleries, Victoria BC
– SHE: Diversity in Feminism, Fazakas Gallery, Vancouver BC
– Co-Mix Art, curated by Efren Quiroz, Martin Bachelor Gallery, Victoria BC
– Pride in Art: The Queer Truth and Nothing But, Fifty-Fifty Arts Collective, Victoria BC
– Difference and Repetition, Slide Room Gallery, Victoria BC
– #Strangelings: Paintings by Pixel Wizards, Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, Victoria BC
– Colours of Summer, Madrona Gallery, Victoria BC
– Curiouser: Contemporary Responses to Alice in Wonderland, curated by Laurie Luck, Fifty-Fifty Arts Collective, Victoria BC
– Selected Works, Massey Gallery, Victoria BC
– Grand Opening with Lu Jun, Apartment Gallery, Victoria BC
– Pride Art Exhibition, Madrona Gallery, Victoria BC
– Art Rainbow, INDEXG, Toronto ON
– Boudoir, Emerging Art Gallery, Victoria BC
– Never Dine Alone, curated by Carollyne Yardley, The Sculpture Studio, Victoria BC
Blazenhoff, Rusty, “Rusty’s Electric Dreams.” Inbox Zine. April’s Artist in Residence.
White, Laurie. ISSUE Dec/Jan., pgs. 14-16. “Seriously Silly, Horse Heads and Flower Beards in the Work of Carollyne Yardley.” Analogue Magazine.
Wright, Andy. Jan 07, 2016 “From Portrait Painters to College Applicants, Squirrel Obsessives Through the Ages.” Atlas Obscura.
Lundy, Susan. Issue Sept 2015, “Secrets and Lives: Carollyne Yardley, Artist.” Boulevard Magazine.
Thomson, John. Issue June 11, 2015, “Canadian Artist Goes Squirrely.” DZine Trip Design Magazine.
Becker, Noah. Issue May 2015, “Guerrilla Girls Inspired Exhibition Opens in Vancouver.” Whitehot Magazine.
Blazenhoff, Rusty. May 19, 2015, “Banksy Squirrel Character with Mask by Carollyne Yardley.” Blazenfluff.
Dobby, Emily. Issue May/June 2015, “The Artful Home. Carollyne Yardley: Contemporary Pop “Squirrealism” At Home Magazine.
Amos, Robert. 29 June. 2014, D7, “First Nations Art, meet squirrels.” Times Colonist.
Cino, Kate. June 16, 2014, “Alcheringa Gallery presents Ravenous with Rande Cook and Carollyne Yardley.” Editorial. Art Openings.
Willey, Philip. June 28, 2014, “Ravenous: Carollyne Yardley and Rande Cook by Philip Willey.” Exhibit-V.
Madden, Aaren. June 2014. VOL. 26 NO.9, pgs. 32-33,“Ravenous, Alcheringa Gallery.” Editorial. Focus Magazine.
Simcoe, Luke. April 29, 2014, “B.C. artist battles Mattel’s American Girl over trademark.” Editorial. Metro News.
Fisher, Gavin. April 29, 2013, “B.C artist facing down Mattel in expensive copyright fight.” Editorial. Globe and Mail.
McCulloch, Sandra. April 30, 2014. Front page, A1. “Artist goes after U.S. giant Mattel over trademark to her own name.” Editorial. Times Colonist.
Hopper, Tristin. Front Page, Pg. A1. April 28, 2014. ”Toymaker Mattel fighting Canadian ‘Squirrealism’ painter Carollyne Yardley over trademark to her own name.” Editorial. National Post.
Lus, Steven. April 28, 2014. “It’s Caroline vs. Carollyne in a fight at the Canadian Intellectual Property Office.” Editorial. CBC News, Vancouver, BC.
Editorial. April 28, 2014. “Canadian Art Fights Mattel’s American Girl Over Trademark.” Huffington Post.
Schlauch, Matthew, April 28, 2014. “#Strangelings: Paintings by Pixel Wizards” Snapd Magazine.
Smart, Amy. Oct.17, 2013: C6. “Creative process shines, digitally and otherwise.” Editorial. Times Colonist.
Coach House Books, April 17, 2013. Cover, Fall 2013 Catalogue, Toronto, Ontario.
Wahl, David. 18 Mar 2013. “Our recent post about Carollyne’s Saint Squirrel and Pope Pinenuts” Archie McPhee’s Endless Geyser of AWESOME!
Lindsay, Teresa. Feb 21. 2013. “Revealing an Incredible Journey through Pop Surrealism.” Vic42 Magazine.
Beneteau, Nicole. 18 Feb. 18, 2013. “Artists Take a Crack at Carroll Classic.” Nexus Newspaper RSS.
Jones, Kate. Feb 12, 2013. “Romancing the Squirrel in the Studio.” Pennello Lane, Creative Canadian Women.
Focus Magazine, Cover, vol. 25., no. 5, February 2013.
Madden, Aaren. Feb. 01, 2013: pgs. 16-17. “The Unbearable Lightness of Squirrels.” Editorial. Focus Magazine.
Threlfall, John. Yam Magazine Issue Jan/Feb 2013: pgs. 16-17. “Culture Goes Pop.” Editorial. Yam Magazine.
Willey, Philip. “Days in the Life.” Illus. by Carollyne Yardley pg. 13. Victoria, BC. Ahndai Books.
Wahl, David. Dec. 07, 2012. “Hey Look, It’s a Gingerbread Squirrel!” Archie McPhee’s Endless Geyser of AWESOME!
Focus Magazine, Cover, vol. 25., no. 3, December 2012.
Monday Magazine, Cover 3829, July 2012.
Green, MaryEllen. pg, 8. July 19, 2012. “Artist Is Nuts for Squirrels.” Monday Magazine.
Wahl, David. June 27 2012. “As Many of You Probably Know by Now, We Have A Soft Spot for Squirrels | Archie McPhee’s Endless Geyser of AWESOME!”
Willey, Philip. May 12, 2012. “Blair, Yardley, Schultz and the Pop Sensibility by Philip Willey.” Exhibit-V.
Patience, Kaitlyn. Apr. 13, 2012. “Artist Spotlight on Carollyne Yardley.” Pamplemousse!
Wolters, Shanice. Apr. 04, 2012 “The Girl with the Squirrels.”
Bart Koubaa (Author), Jan 01, 2012. Cover of “De Brooklyn Club”, Querido Publishing.
Wood, Christine. Dec. 07, 2011 “The Business of Art.” Kendall Wood.
Robert, Amos. Aug. 20, 2011: D5. “Treasures of Oak Bay Galleries.” Times Colonist.
DHaem, Jim. Sept.11, 2011. “Geisha Girl Squirrel (and QR Code).” QR Code Artist.