The Kamloops Arts Council is holding its seventh annual Art Exposed Regional Exhibition from March 3 to 11; and any resident of the Thompson-Nicola Regional District who practises visual art of any kind—from painting, photography, and sculpture to pottery, glass mosaics, clothing, and more—is invited to enter one of their works at the non-curated show.
There are established and emerging categories for adult artists, and this year the exhibition—which is sponsored by the Kamloops Arts Council (KAC)—has added a category for youth aged eight to 14.
“We’ve allowed youth to enter in the past,” says Kathy Sinclair, executive director of the KAC, “and had people 10 or 11 win honourable mentions. But it’s so difficult to look at youth artwork next to works created by adults, so we’ve created a special category.”
Established artists are those who have gained the recognition of their peers and/or community as an artist, and been practicing and/or exhibiting for three or more years. Emerging artists have rarely or never exhibited, or are current students or recent graduates, or who have been practicing and/or exhibiting for less than three years.
“I love seeing the first time artists who have never shown their work,” says Sinclair. “It’s a really encouraging environment, and sometimes they just need a gentle push. It’s a really awesome chance.”
Artists are limited to one piece each, to a maximum size of 12 square feet (maximum width three feet). “We want to get as many artists on display as possible, so we’re only allowing one piece for now,” says Sinclair. If, after the registration deadline of February 14, there is still space, artists may be allowed to enter a second piece. Last year 255 pieces of artwork were on display in the Old Courthouse building, and Sinclair admits it got “pretty squishy.”
Prizes and honourable mentions will be awarded in all three categories, and artists have an opportunity to sell their work as well. “It’s a great chance to get their name out there, and sometimes it leads to commissions.”
Artists can also ask for an appointment with one of the three judges—Wendy Weseen and Christine Beaton, who are both from Kamloops, and Trish Armstrong-Gibson, from Logan Lake—for a critique of their work. “The artist can get some feedback,” says Sinclair, “such as general observations, or how they can improve it. It’s as detailed as you want it to be.”
There is an entry fee of $35 ($25 for KAC members) in the adult categories, and $15 ($10 for KAC members) in the youth category. An appointment with one of the judges for a critique is $10. Although the registration deadline is February 14, works do not need to be ready until the drop off dates, February 24 and 25.
In addition, all artists who enter a work are asked to volunteer for a two-hour gallery-sitting shift (or send someone in their place). Artists are welcome to bring a work in progress to work on during their shift, says Sinclair.
“It’s always fun to have stuff happening, and people love to see artists working. It’s a community show, and a unique opportunity in the region.”
The Art Exposed exhibition is open to the public from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. from March 3 to March 11, with an evening showing on March 9 from 5 to 8 p.m. For more information, or to register, go to www.kamloopsarts.ca.