Venezia - Sienna and Laine Dahlen(composer)
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Laine Dahlen

Visual Artist


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Photo taken at the Rolla Hotel and Pub, Rolla, BC



Each piece is framed, signed and unique

My Life in Art


For all commissions and bookings:

Sienna Dahlen- 416-892-3728


I was born in Edmonton, AB and grew up in Dawson Creek, BC. I began my visual arts training in the early to mid-60’s when I enrolled in a three year correspondence course from the Art Instruction School based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Several years later and directly out of high school I worked for CJDC Television in Dawson Creek, BC doing graphics, shooting, developing and mounting slides for daily advertisements as well as editing small commercial films into movie reels.


In 1969 my former wife and I moved to Nelson, BC where I attended the Kootenay School of Art in the Commercial Art program. In my 2nd and 3rd year of studies (1970-72) I transferred to the Fine Arts program (with a major in Painting) and during that period of time began doing my first solo and group exhibitions. From 1972-74 I attended Notre Dame University (also in Nelson) and graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree with an emphasis on Theater Production, English, History and Philosophy. My two children were born in Nelson during our time spent there.


In 1977 I was hired by Northern Lights College in Dawson Creek to develop a program in Visual Arts. This soon became the Visual and Graphic Communication Arts Program offering students first year, full time courses in Graphic Design, Illustration (Drawing), Printmaking, Media Development (Painting), Photography and Art History. Of these courses, I taught the first 4 and for several years, art history as well.


The program was expanded to Fort St. John BC in 1978 and a course in Pottery was added to the curriculum in both centers. In addition to my teaching duties in Dawson Creek, I taught painting in Fort St. John for approximately a decade in order to fill out their program and I traveled to Chetwynd, BC for several years to offer the course there as well.


In addition to the aforementioned, I also taught workshops and gave short courses during the 1980’s and early 90’s in Fort Nelson, BC, Hudson’s Hope, BC, Cassiar, BC, Chetwynd, BC, Grande Prairie, AB, Beaverlodge, AB, Fairview, AB and Moberly Lake, BC.  I retired from Northern Lights College in Dawson Creek in 2009.


Associations, Exhibitions and Additional Art Skills Training:


  • 1975- Present: Member of the South Peace Art Society

  • Former member of the Peace Watercolour Society

  • In addition to Canada, I have work in the US, Japan, England and Italy

  • Spring of 1986- I studied Metal Plate Etching in Florence, Italy in coordination with the International Studio of the Emily Carr College of Art and Design in Vancouver, BC

  • Participation in various local group and solo exhibitions as well as several juried shows which have featured my work across British Columbia and Alberta.  My work can also be found in the permanent collections of the Dawson Creek Art Gallery, the Grande Prairie Art Gallery, the Grande Prairie Hospital, Fairview College in Fairview, AB and Northern Lights College in Dawson Creek.



In addition to the visual arts, I have always enjoyed playing music. Guitar and voice are my main instruments however I studied piano as a young boy from the age of 10 (Grade 5 RCM) and I’m a (passable) bass guitarist.  I am primarily a self-taught musician but have received considerable help along the way from other players. My main musical influences stem from music that was made in the 1930’s through to the early 1970’s. I have played many different styles of music in my lifetime but have always loved blues and swing along with 30’s/40’s country music- (read Bob Wills and Asleep at the Wheel.)


I have played in many different bands since around the age of 13 but one of the highlights of my freelance career was playing a weeklong gig at Expo 86 in Vancouver, BC with a band that was representing the Peace River region, my home country. We were called the Dudley Shaw Band.


In the late 1980’s I went through a period in my life where I felt compelled to compose a small body of my own material. During that time and as of late I have written a total of 14 songs. Twelve of those songs were recorded in a rudimentary fashion with some of my closest playing buddies many years ago but in the spring of 2015 my daughter and I recorded my song “Venezia” in Toronto for her new album, Ice Age Paradise. The record was released this fall (2016). What a pleasure it is to hear her sing that song. I feel that my life has come full circle now.