Building Bridges: An Art Exhibit by Local Street Community Artists

Free!
January 10 - February 4
Cedar Hill Rec Centre, Main GalleryView on map
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    Building Bridges is more than just an art exhibition featuring the work of artists in the street community. It is an invitation to the residents of Greater Victoria to come together to break down barriers of fear and prejudice that separate us, using the universal language of art.

    The idea was born from a synergy between two local Victoria artists, Star Casement and Tanya Bub, who met during the filming of a documentary called Sitting with Grace. The one-hour documentary by local film maker Ross Whelan features 8 unscripted interviews with members of our local street community, filmed in one afternoon in Centennial Square. Bub created a collaborative sculpture/throne called Grace which acted as both an ice breaker and safe space for the candid and heartfelt conversations. The final interview in the documentary with Casement, who makes an impassioned plea that strikes a powerful cord with audiences, was a call to action for Bub.

    “Star’s ideas of celebrating people for their strengths rather than focusing on their weaknesses is so simple, yet powerful,” said Bub, “and she has a broad vision and practical ideas about how to make it happen.”

    After the filming the two women began to work together to turn Casement’s ideas of empowering artists in the street community, into a reality. The first step was finding a suitable venue and it seemed fate would lend a hand. By chance Shantael Sleight, an arts programmer with the Municipality of Saanich, contacted Bub regarding an unrelated exhibit just before a screening of Sitting with Grace which Sleight subsequently attended. Moved by the documentary, she worked with the two artists to find a space for the innovative exhibition, now titled – Building Bridges: An art exhibit by local street community artists.

    The exhibit which runs from January 10th through February 4th in the main gallery in the Cedar Hill Rec Centre (3220 Cedar Hill Rd, Victoria, BC) will feature sculptures, paintings, bead work, drawings and wall hangings made by artists from Victoria’s local street community. Admission to this family friendly exhibition is free and the public is encouraged to meet the artists for in-gallery art demos on January 20 & 27th.

    Additionally the public is invited to attend a by-donation screening of Sitting with Grace, the documentary which started it all, in the multipurpose room at the Cedar Hill Recreation Centre January 21st at 6pm. Casement, Bub and Whelan will be in attendance to speak about the film and answer questions. Refreshments will be provided. Bub’s sculpture, Grace, will also be in display in the main gallery for the duration of the exhibition.

    “We have been so moved by the support and generosity from the District of Saanich and the community who have stepped up to help out with the exhibition.” said Bub “It takes tremendous courage to cross these unspoken lines and we are particularly proud of the artists for taking a leap of faith to build bridges with Victoria’s community with their beautiful art work, so mark your calendars and come see the show!”

    Visit saanich.ca for more information about the exhibition.

    Destination Greater Victoria is honoured to be based on the traditional territory of the Lekwungen-speaking peoples of the Songhees Nation and the Esquimalt Nation, whose historical relationships with the land continue to this day.