With the beautiful sunny weather, the myriad of exceptional artworks, workshops, demonstrations, kids events, and music on the riverside, this year’s Arts Fest was nothing short of extraordinary! It was an action packed weekend, kicking of with the Gallery Hop on Thursday night, which showcased an amazing array of works by local and visiting artists all over town.
A big thanks to the organizations that hosted events- ODD Gallery, the Confluence Gallery, the Dawson City Museum, Peabody’s, the Dancing Moose, CFYT, Fortymile Gold, Bombay Peggies, la Centre de la francophonie, l’Association franco-yukonnaise and the Conservation Klondike Society.
The Gallery Hop opened with talks by KIAC artists in residence, Bill Burns, Steve Badgett and Deborah Stratman, whose work is currently being displayed as part of the ODD Gallery’s second platform of this year’s Natural and Manufactured series. After introductions by ODD Gallery Director Lance Blomgren, Bill Burns opened his talk in story form, offering hilarious, tongue-in-cheek, verging on scandalous tales of his art world travails and mishaps. Burns discussed his attempt to entice an Ontario Police Force Officer into accepting a gift in the form of a vast collection of animal, boat and plane shaped salt and pepper shakers. After some correspondence, the Officer regrettably could not accept the gift due to lack of space to properly house the collection. For those who missed the lecture, Burns’ watercolour paintings depicting some of his true to life scenarios are still on display in the ODD Gallery, along with a freshly cut pile of logs paying homage to the great art world figures who helped him out along the way.
Following Burns, Steve Badgett and Deborah Stratman discussed previous installation projects, as well as their current exhibition for the Natural and Manufactured series. Badgett and Stratman have produced an impressive selection of installations and films addressing issues ranging from psychological warfare and surveillance systems to resource management and water purification. For more information on these, you can check out their websites at www.simparch.org and www.pythagorasfilm.com. Their current project, Augural Pair serves as reflection on the rising value of gold in an irrational and unpredictable marketplace. The work consists of a giant shiny mirrored disk, installed across the river from the ODD Gallery, and two strategically placed telescopes, one on the riverside and the other directly across from the CIBC bank. The first telescope offers a close-up view of the mirror disc, through which some curious onlookers are visible. The second offers a view of the fluctuating price of gold in the window of the bank. The telescopes are worth checking out in person, and will be up until September 16th.
Following an abundant reception at the ODD Gallery, it was on to the many Gallery Hop venues. A big thanks to the thirty plus talented DCAS members who exhibited work at the Confluence Gallery opening! The show featured an amazing and diverse selection of artwork, revealing Dawson City’s bountiful creative minds.
The Peabody’s crew converted the photo parlour into a cozy, velvety viewing room- the perfect space for an intimate exhibition of photos by staff members and owner Jackie Olsen. Olsen also exhibited a beautiful selection of her paintings from various collections, which are available for viewing at the Dawson City Museum until the end of August.
The evening offered many many more events, including exhibitions and special broadcasts by CFYT staff and volunteers, beautiful Trail Bags by Faye Chamberlaine and raven paintings by Nicole Bauberger at Forty Mile Gold, streetscape mosaics by Riley Brennan at the Dancing Moose, and new paintings by Halin de Repintigny at Peggy’s.
To end the evening, the Free Store Dance Party fundraiser for Conservation Klondike Society saw Dawsoners cutting loose in hilarious and fantastic costumes, with dance moves to match.
A jam packed night- and the festivities have only just begun!