Contributed by Monica Alves, Communications & Event Planning Intern
October – a time first endorsed as “Community Living Month” by the Inclusion BC Board of Directors back in 1998. Now, nearly 20 years later, this project has grown into a month that we here at posAbilities continue to look forward to every year. It is during this time that communities BC wide are encouraged to celebrate and bring awareness to the strengths, abilities and assets of people living with diverse abilities. In light of this, we hosted our 13th Annual Inclusion Art Show & Sale to kickoff the month right!
On October 3rd and 4th, Vancouver’s beloved Heritage Hall was filled with creative art including photography, paintings, illustrations, pottery, glasswork, jewelry, fabric art and more. What makes this art so special? The 200+ creators were artists living with developmental, intellectual, and physical disabilities.
This year, we featured more art than we ever have before! Thanks to 11 studios supported by Community Living organizations and independent artists, almost 1000 original pieces of art were shown off, each holding the unique and inspiring stories of the artists who crafted them.
It was a full house on the opening night of the show. The entire exhibit was buzzing with excitement: from the bustle of art admirers and proud artists greeting guests, to the delicious servings of food and wine and tunes from accordionist, Katheryn Petersen. This night also featured a silent auction with amazing prizes and a live art demonstration of chain mail jewelry making, performed by Justin Albay.
We were proud to welcome Councillor Adrianne Carr to the stage to present the City of Vancouver’s Declaration of Community Inclusion Month. Then, winding down the night we announced the winner of our Holiday Card Contest, Darren Fisher of Vicuna Art Studio, Ridge Meadows Association for Community Living! His creative design called “Making Friends” features woodland animals in a wintery forest, and was purchased by posAbilities to be used in our electronic greeting cards, Imagine newsletter and online.
Day 2 was all about the art demos. Artists let the guests take a peek into their creative processes, as they made their masterpieces live in the exhibit. Live art demonstrations included painting by Rebecca Nosella and AJ Brown, wheel throwing by Teena Shaw, clay mandalas by Andrea Hrysko, mouth painting by Cody Tresierra, and glass fusing by Fatima Khan. Check out their artist bios here!
We can’t thank you enough for another successful Art Show & Sale! It was heartwarming to see the artists so passionate about their work, and eager to chat with fellow art lovers. As BC’s largest disability art show, we are proud of the message we convey every year – with inclusive communities, comes enriched lives.
A big thank you goes out to our Art Show Committee for all of their hard work and dedication, and our special event volunteers.
Capilano Suspension Bridge Park ∙ Firehall Arts Centre ∙ FlyOver Canada ∙ Grouse Mountain ∙ Katheryn Peterson ∙ Pacific Breeze Winery ∙ PotteryWorks ∙ Shoppers Drug Mart, Centrepoint ∙ Starbucks ∙ Steel and Oak Brewery ∙ The Body Shop, Aberdeen Centre ∙ The Keg ∙ Vancouver Whitecaps FC ∙ Value Village ∙ Westwood Plateau Golf & Country Club ∙ Whole Foods, North Burnaby