The Power Plant

Drink from the river

Brenda Draney

Ongoing Exhibition

Feb 03 – May 14 2023

Brenda Draney, Visit, 2021.JPG

Brenda Draney, Visit, 2021. Oil on canvas, 170 x 277 cm. Courtesy Gage and Luke Allard. Image courtesy Catriona Jeffries, Vancouver. Photo: Rachel Topham Photography.


Rob & Monique Sobey

Anonymous Donor




Jacqueline Kok
Nancy McCain and Bill Morneau Curatorial Fellow, 2021–23

Drink from the river, Brenda Draney’s first solo exhibition at The Power Plant, features a selection of existing and newly commissioned works that examine the complex nature of intimacy. Referencing her own memories and experiences living in Edmonton, the artist explores the layered meanings embedded in everyday motifs and situations. However, instead of simply reproducing these elements, Draney is more interested in addressing how their meanings can shift when filtered through individual interpretation. Furthermore, by deliberately leaving blank spaces in her paintings, Draney leaves room for viewers to deeply reflect on the subject matter presented. Audiences are invited to connect to the wide range of emotions tied to the nuanced experience of intimacy that the artist explores in her works.

Drink from the river thus not only considers how memory shapes identity but suggests that nostalgia—the pain stemming from the desire to recreate something from the past—can lead to a more profound understanding of oneself. Draney's commitment to representing critical moments from her life and the life of her community, as seen in her conscientious and sensitive approach to painting, makes her one of the most notable contemporary artists of her generation.

About the Artist

Brenda Draney

Brenda Draney (b. 1976, Sawridge First Nation, Treaty 8, with a strong connection to Slave Lake; based in Edmonton) has been featured in exhibitions at the Walter Phillips Gallery, Banff (2019); Fogo Island Arts (2019); Oakville Galleries (2018); Kitchener-Waterloo Gallery (2017); Audain Gallery, Simon Fraser University, Vancouver (2017); National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa (2016); Art Gallery of Alberta, Edmonton (2015); and Mendel Art Gallery, Saskatoon (2013).