By Tracey Kutschker, Salmon Arm Arts Center
Despite the twists and turns of the year, the Salmon Arm Arts Center launched a number of dynamic and engaging programs in 2021.
Over the spring and summer, the Arts Center team created The Wharf Sessions, a digital album celebrating the spirit of Wednesday on the Pier, which is available for free online. It features 11 groups and a fantastic storyteller from the Shuswap, and can be found on Spotify, Apple Music, iTunes, and the arts center website.
The Salmon Arm Art Gallery remained open throughout 2021 and featured seven captivating exhibitions. The highlight was Piqw (Secwepemctsin meaning ‘to watch’), which featured 470 miniature works of art by artists of all ages. The Walking at 6000 ‘and Sound Machines summer exhibits attracted a lot of people and spawned digital offerings that can be found on the Salmon Arm Arts Center YouTube channel.
In August 2021, the triple rainbow crosswalk was installed in the intersection in front of the arts center. The original Pride Flag, Inclusive Pride Flag and Transgender Pride Flag make up the three colorful crosswalks and have been the subject of many jubilant photos and social media posts. Also in August, a tripartite agreement was signed between the Shuswap District Arts Council, the Town of Salmon Arm and Salmon Arm Economic Development to advance the action plans of the new Cultural Master Plan.
The arts center marked the first National Truth and Reconciliation Day with a ceremony in the main square attended by over a hundred people, with knowledge keeper Secwepemc Louis Thomas leading the ceremony, and Erica Seymour and her family performing the song of honor.
October saw Project Salmon Arm Pride’s second annual arts and awareness festival. It was a huge success, with many in-person and online events using the arts to promote acceptance and awareness of the 2SLGBTQ + community.
The Breaking the Binary exhibit continued in the art gallery and, through art, shared stories about the human experience outside of male-female / gay-straight binaries. Over the past year, the arts center has released 21 episodes of Family Saturdays, 19 artist talks, and five Pride Project mini-docs, which can be viewed on YouTube at the Salmon Arm Arts Center.
The Salmon Arm Arts Council is honored to serve the community and continue to find new ways to stimulate creativity and connection to Salmon Arm.
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