Nela Hallwas’ movement-inspired paintings team with Lyn Verra-Lay’s hand-dyed silks in the window-only exhibit Flow, at the Crescent Beach Pop-Up Gallery until Aug. 26. (Contributed photo)

New collective debuts with Crescent Beach show

Nela Hallwas and Lyn Verra-Lay team for ‘Flow’

While restricted to a window-only display by the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, an exhibit at the Crescent Beach Pop-Up Gallery nonetheless marks the debut of an exciting new arts partnership.

Artist/choreographer Nela Hallwas (XBa Dance) and artist/musician/actor Lyn Verra-Lay have joined forces as the The Lyla Art Collective, presenting the show until Aug. 26 at the gallery, at Beecher Place (12160 Beecher St.).

Titled Flow, the City of Surrey-sponsored collaborative exhibit juxtaposes the arresting dance and movement-inspired paintings of Hallwas with Verra-Lay’s vivid hand-dyed silks.

The series of mixed-media pieces revolves around the movement of the water, wind and the silks.

Having to keep the gallery closed to visitors has curtailed original plans for the show, which would have added live and recorded dance performances to the mix, Verra-Lay explained.

“We have had to re-imagine the exhibit,” she acknowledged.

“Nela’s daughter, Amadea, was going to be filmed dancing with my silks and the finished product would have looped on iPads in the gallery. And live demonstrations of the same dances were also planned.”

For now, that potential must remain as a tantalizing possibility to be explored more fully in a post-pandemic future, Verra-Lay said.

“Nevertheless, Nela and I are grateful for the opportunity to still show our work at the Pop Up,” she added.

And there’s another plus to the current situation – with the gallery not open to the public, the show is not limited to set opening times and the window displays can be seen and appreciated throughout daylight hours by visitors to the beach.

For more information, visit the Crescent Beach Pop-Up Gallery page on the city website,

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