While art galleries have faced challenges during COVID, a recent online festival in B.C. provided a forum for some aspiring young Comox Valley artists to feature their work.
The Comox Valley students’ images were on display in the Capture Photography Festival, a virtual exhibit that serves as part of the Flash Forward Incubator Program.
“Incubator integrates interactive and instructional methods to provide youth with diverse opportunities to receive feedback on the evolution of their artistic concepts,” the shows website states.
This marks the second year in a row for the virtual exhibit, set up in response to COVID restrictions.
“It just goes to show: people aren’t stopping; they’re just changing the media,” superintendent Tom Demeo told trustees at the most recent school board meeting. “It’s really nice to see our students celebrating and sharing their work in a different platform, but nonetheless they’re sharing.”
The show’s theme of “Still Life” looked at the impact of how literal and conceptual interpretations of the still life may affect people personally through behaviour, values and sense of self. The public art exhibition is also featured at the Roundhouse in Vancouver to May 15.
The G.P. Vanier fine arts students featured include Kenisha Anderson, Danielle Egilson, Chloe Hatch, Emilie van Holderbeke, Desi de Koninck, Abby Lundquist and Ron Seitz. Highland Secondary students include Stella Lee and Chantal Morfitt. The two Comox Valley schools were joined by five schools from the Vancouver area.
Beyond exhibiting the works, the event served as an auction of students’ artwork between April 19 and 25. To view the select photography artwork, visit https://www.32auctions.com/Incubator2021. The money raised from the auction goes to the students’ school art departments.
For four years, school district secondary students have successfully showcased their photography at this festival for emerging young artists, though 2020 was the first time for the virtual format.
“During this time when we are restricted from physically convening, it has been invigorating to stay connected through our shared interest in the power of lens-based works and commitment to the dialogues the works can incite,” festival executive director Emmy Lee Wall said in a closing statement on the website on April 30.
The program was sponsored by the Magenta Foundation with the aim of nurturing young Canadian talent with photography mentorship opportunities.
The Capture Photography Festival is Western Canada’s largest lens-based art festival and is exhibited at dozens of galleries and other venues throughout the Vancouver area as part of the exhibition program. This happens alongside an extensive public art program, a youth-oriented learning program and an events program with tours, films, artist talks and community events.