Ronya Lake – Interdisciplinary Artist Profile

I’m Ronya. I am surface pattern designer, specializing in textiles and wallpaper.
But my journey to get here has been a real hay-ride!

Early on in my dance career, I performed long-form, image-based solo work with underground post-rock band, the Beans. The Beans were inspired by the long improvisational patterns and structures from Javanese Gamelan and contemporary classical composers. Building image-based art structured on a scaffolding of pattern has since become the nuclear theme of my life’s work. While studying contemporary dance, and visual art in university I landed a spot in an Afro-Brazilian dance company Afro Bahia Ballet before heading to Johannesburg. There, I studied traditional & contemporary African dance, music, and anthropology. It is interesting to note that patterns in traditional dance often reflect societal structures. For example we see groups dancing in a circle pattern facing inward when they belong to an egalitarian community.

I returned to Vancouver and spent over a decade immersed in the Vancouver Dance Community performing with the Butoh company Kokoro Dance, under the mentorship of Barbara Bourget.
Butoh, is a form of dance that originated in Japan post World War II in response to the bombing of Hiroshima. It is categorized as avant-garde or post-modern but remains difficult to define. Patterns are used in Butoh to alter the audience’s perception of time. Performers follow multiple patterns of movement, musical syncopation, meditative imagery and breath work simultaneously as way of sustaining attention.
My interdisciplinary art career has been heavily influenced by the study and performance of Butoh, most notably in my approach to workflow and in my personal design aesthetic.

 I am also drawn to classical realism and portraiture and my favorite medium is pencil crayon.

I like to dive into rigorous processes.
I landed in Victoria. Studying horticulture and landscape design, and I became a mother.

At the time that I was learning to draw landscape designs by hand on trace with a protractor, landscape designers were beginning to use 3D modeling. So I wanted to learn about that – and I discovered digital art and eventually found my spot in surface pattern design.

As a surface pattern designer, I’m drawn to complex repeating patterns and images of nature.

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