Wilfred Joey Klein

North Slave
Primary Art Type: 

Artist Story

I was born in Inuvik but moved to Edmonton with my family when I was two-years old. Growing up in the city, there was something I wasn’t connecting with, which I now know was my Aboriginal culture. When I was on my own, I realized I needed to return to the North and to my roots to discover who I really was. I went back to Tsiigehtchic where my mother was from and lived there for a number of years before exploring other NWT communities.

I have always done pencil sketching and woodwork. It was my wife who encouraged me to see what I could do with oils. We were living at Paulatuk at the time and I started painting along with Bob Ross on the TV. I found a new love for art. Something opened up inside me. Where I was at that time is truly where I was meant to be. After a while I would stand back and look at my work. I realized I could slow it down. Bob Ross speed paints – wet on wet. By slowing it down I could see what was truly inside of me instead of jumping steps. This realization has helped me learn and grow as a painter and a person.

I have been painting for about 12 years now and think it’s taken me about 300 canvasses to reach a point where I feel confident in my ability. I do what are called connected energy paintings. Basically, they are paintings that capture a moment in time when the universe says this is exactly where you are supposed to be. I’m grateful to be able to share those moments with my clients.

I like to help people inspire their creative side. You never know where your creative side may take you. For me it helps me find balance. Painting is a way of being in close contact with my emotions. When I paint all of my emotions are on the surface. I have suffered from mental illness and art is a healthy way for me to direct my energies.


Artist Bio: 

Born in Inuvik, Northwest Territories. Wilfred spent most of his childhood and young adult life traveling between Edmonton and the Northwest Territories, This constant movement growing has made it difficult for Wilfred to establish his aboriginal roots. He currently makes is his home in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories where he is begin to create new roots with his wife and son. After 15 years in Fort Simpson, Northwest Territories. Youngest member of 8 siblings. Losing his biological father to a heart attack in 1988, When he was just 8 at the time, then losing his step father in 2002 when he was 21. Then in 2011 his mother. He was 31, both passing away from cancer. It has had a profound impact on his journey of self discovery. Wilfred is slowly being coming in tone with his spiritual being which has help him realize his artistic abilities. He finds contentment in creating unique pieces of artwork and sharing them with others, as an artist he seeks appreciation for the visions he posses and is able to express threw his artwork, The pieces he creates are a reflection of his current journey, Currently his series involve an array of  Aurora  Borealis Landscapes. The electric blue. Icy greens aches illuminating the peaceful mountains, trees, and water below. The current series of oil paintings hold a special meaning to both him and as well as is  clients. He calls these “connected energy paintings” these paintings capture a moment in time for his clients. I believe now more then ever before. When you love something  so much. It truly becomes a part of your being. Guiding you in your everyday life. I see my artwork in mother nature. As it becomes a way to council myself when life can sometimes get me down. The moment you step back tilt your head to one side and say to yourself. I just did that. I feel great, proud and excited. But to stay humble. Finding his balance in everyday, knowing that everything happens for a reason, even if it only makes senses to you.


Last Updated: May 28, 2024

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