Culture crawlin’

My friend John, Cas and I headed out to take in the Culture Crawl on the Friday night. I hadn’t made it to the crawl in the 3 years since moving to Vancouver, and it was well past time for me to take it in. John had 3 artists in particular that he wanted to visit in the Parker Street Studios (1000 Parker St), so we decided to focus our efforts there. On our tour, I found 3 artists particularly awesome and worth mentioning.

Karen Bagayawa: Karen is a friend of John’s whom he met in the blogasphere. I was delighted to have her work singled out since she was located in the corner section of one of the divided spaces on the fourth floor. I don’t know if I would have caught her otherwise, and it would have truly been a shame. Karen’s works are like a taspetry of precious stone. She was also commissioned by the Crawl this year for some of her work! Definitely worth checking out: karenbagayawaartblog.com

David Robinson: I need to single out my visit to David Robinson’s studio because it’s time I paid props to this magnificent sculptor who’s work has made my visits to Yaletown that much better. The large sculpture of a man bound to a horse, located just behind the Davie st exit of the Yaletown Canada line station, has caused me to stop many times before I breeze through Mainland to get downtown. Even if it’s pouring with rain (or perhaps especially in the pouring rain), the sculpture dominates the park demanding your attention. I had never put a name to work before (even having read the plaque under the public piece several times), and now encourage you to take the time to check out more of his work.

Luke Detheridge: Luke, costume designer and inventor, had a dinosaur skeleton & shell piece he had created on display as well as a video of his wearing it about in Vancouver. The carapace is made of plastic milk containers, carved into different shapes and held together with zap straps. He had wired it (also using found objects) to control the beast’s mouth and the entire piece was carried/worn on a serious looking backpack. Cas made a remark that the film industry must be courting him for projects, and we learned that sculptors get the same insulting requests that writers and illustrators get all the time “would you do some work for my film/project for free?”. I told him that my favourite response to someone undervaluing creativity and the creator is to quote from the biopic about Harland Ellison Dreams with Sharp Teeth (available on Netflix Canada :p) :

There must have been at least a hundred artists featured in that one building alone, so I was glad that we had specific destinations in mind. I don’t think we would have had the energy to make all four floors, especially as the night stretched on and more and more people flowed into the building.

If you’ve ever been to a crowded gallery or art opening, you’ve probably experienced or at least seen a drink-related mishaps. I’ve always found it funny that they serve liquor at openings (one excuse that I’ve heard is to lubricate the journalists :p), because you have a room full of distracted people who either are drinking with their backs turned to the artwork or they are starting at the artwork while walking around the room not paying attention to the other people doing the exact same thing. There is probably a percentage loss number that I’ve never been told about regarding damaged pieces at a show. I guess I’m about to find out…

In any case, as more and more people crowded into the already narrow stairwells and studio spaces of the Parker Street Studio, the risk of crushed toes, and spilled drinks spiralled higher and Cas & I took our leave. We wanted to get to the Moon Base 3.0 exhibition before it closed as well. There weren’t very many people there by the time we walked over, but Luc LaTulippe and Marc Pilon were still there. I was also happy to see Josué’s work. Josué was kind enough to take a look at some of my work recently and gave me some feedback for my website. It’s really awesome to have successful professional artists give me feedback. At his advice, if I don’t have my store working by the end of November, I’m taking the menu heading down until it’s ready to go.

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