Calling all local artists: here's your chance to be part of the 2010 Olympics.
The Whistler Arts Council has just released five calls for entry to the local artistic community, calling on Sea to Sky artists to step up and join in the Whistler Live! celebrations, which will take place throughout the village during the Olympics. Here are the five aspects of Whistler Live! they're recruiting for:
• ArtWalk Inside: a village-wide exhibition of visual artists in host gallery spaces. About10 to 20 non-traditional host "galleries, (cafes, retail outlets, hotels and businesses) will exhibit artists from as early as January 2010 through to the end of March 2010. Deadline for application is Nov. 11.
• GOBOS: short for GOes Before Optics, this installment will see the outline of a piece of artwork laser-etched onto a piece of glass, which is then put over a light and projected onto a surface (a screen, the ground, the snow or any surface that holds light). WAC is looking for 10 to 15 pieces of art to transfer into GOBOS, which will be projected in Skiers Plaza during the nightly Fire & Ice show. Deadline for application is Nov. 2.
• Artists at Work on the Stroll: street entertainment and live painting in the Town Plaza Gazebo daily from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m. from Feb. 12 to March 21. WAC is looking for artists from across British Columbia to create a new art piece, work on a current piece, or put the finishing touches on a work in progress while interacting with the crowd. Deadline for application is Nov. 2.
• CORE SHOTS!" Screen Photography: a digital photo exhibition for Sea to Sky photographers to showcase their work in a way that will entertain and impress the masses. Outdoor photography will be shown on the nine plasma screens along Village Stroll from the base of the mountains to Marketplace, while selected photos will be shown as part of slideshows between concerts and performances, as backdrops to these performances. Deadline for application is Nov. 2.
• Cut-Outs: one-of-a-kind, locally-created, painted wooden cut-outs will be situated along Village Stroll to give residents and visitors the opportunity to take a piece of Whistler home with them in a photo. Deadline for application is Nov. 2.
Doti Niedermayer, executive director for WAC, is pleased that 20 per cent of the overall Whistler Live! programming includes Sea to Sky performers.
"It's basically always been the plan to integrate the local artists into the overall Whistler Live! experience, so along with programming national and international performers, the Arts Council has always participated in the planning of this to make sure local artists are also included."
They have decided to work with the community's existing strengths, focusing on showcasing the visual, rather than performing arts, though there will also be many Sea to Sky musicians, like Ali Milner and Animal Nation, performing for crowds at the Village Square stage.
"Given that it's a Canadian program - it's an Olympic Games, it's not a regional event, it's not a local festival, it's a national and international event - I feel really pleased with the amount of funds that have been allocated to local programming, and the opportunities that have been allocated to the local artists."
Niedermayer points out that despite serious budget cuts to the Whistler Live! program, dropping from $20 million to $6 million, the local artists were still kept on the roster.
"It would have been so easy, probably in so many ways, to just cut the local programming," she said. "...And that never happened."
Artist Award of Excellence
After almost two years of planning, the Whistler Arts Council is finally ready to introduce their inaugural Artist Award of Excellence, which will recognize one emerging and one professional artist from the Sea to Sky corridor for their achievements, thanks in large part to the support of La Bocca Restaurant.
"I am so proud that the Whistler Arts Council is finally able to publicly recognize and acknowledge the creative achievements of the very talented artists who reside and work in the Sea to Sky corridor," Joan Richoz, chair of the WAC board of directors, said in a recent press release. "I am especially grateful to La Bocca Restaurant and the Arts and Culture Legacy Fund for providing the funding required to offer these awards of excellence and for the opportunity to show their work in curated exhibitions."
Doti Niedermayer, executive director of WAC, points out that aside from the $1,000 prize associated with the award, the winner's entry will be curated by a panel of outside industry experts, and their work will be exhibited at a Lower Mainland gallery, both of which are huge development opportunities for any local artist.
Application deadline is Nov. 2.