Born in South Africa, Alana Barrell grew up there as well as in Canada, Singapore, Ethiopia, and Brunei. Diagnosed with schizophrenia at the age of 15, she could no longer attend school and faced an uneven and lifelong road to recovery from multiple episodes.
Alana returned to Montreal in 2005, and in 2012 she entered the CAP program (Centre d’apprentissage parallèle de Montréal) to hone her artistic talents, receiving instruction in sculpture, oil painting, and mixed media among other techniques.
She has presented her work in multiple group exhibits of naïve art, as well as her two solo outings, Wild Characters, presented as part of the MENTAL HEALTH AMBASSADORS series in 2017 and The Shortest Path at Usine C in 2018.
Aside from her mother and sister, Alana’s local family also includes dogs, Merlot and Biscuit, and cat, Perla. She enjoys baking and knitting in her spare time.