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Surrey Art Gallery talks return with wildlife artist

Leo Recilla first in new series of illustrated lectures
Left, Stand Your Ground, by Leo Recilla, typifies the mixture of realist detail and geometrical framing in his work; right, Face The Shadows, illustrates the juxtaposition of detailed observation and geometric form typical of his work. (Leo Recilla images)

Surrey Art Gallery Association resumes its monthly Thursday Artist Talk series Sept. 8 with wildlife artist Leo Recilla.

The free talk at the gallery (13750 - 88 Ave.), titled Simplicity Meets Complexity, will run from 7:30 p.m. to 9 p.m.

A freelance graphic designer by trade, Recilla said he is always ready to work with his hands – and away from a screen – creating artwork based on ideas he’s compiled through the years.

Using techniques adapted from his studies in graphic design, the artist delights in combining realistic details with simple abstract or geometric forms.

The illustrated talk will highlight Spirit Animals, his ongoing portrait series, depicting the intricate relationship between wild animals and humans.

“The main subjects of the portraits, each inspired by the wildlife of British Columbia, are hand-drawn in realism with a lot of detail and interlocked within simple abstract or geometric forms that represent man-made interactions,” he said.

For these works, his predominant media are graphite and charcoal – occasionally mixing in inks or acrylic paint sparingly, to accentuate specific areas and achieve an intended effect.

Born and raised in the Philippines, Recilla emigrated to Canada in 2003, settling in Burnaby, B.C., where he’s currently based.

Aside from art, he said, he strives to broaden his creative horizons by designing logos and branding for small to mid-size businesses, taking and self-developing film photography at home, and occasionally doing woodworking.

For more information on his work, visit

For more information on the Surrey Art Gallery Association, visit

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