BC Culture Days 2020



BC Culture Days Announces Expanded, Cross-Country
Virtual Celebration of Arts & Culture

Annual Arts Event enhances accessibility & diversity through month-long offerings of free, inclusive activities hosted in-person and online, during COVID-19 crisis

Vancouver, BC—BC Culture Days invites British Columbians to experience the ‘unexpected intersections’ of creative connection and artistic discovery during its 11th annual celebration of arts and culture, September 25 to October 25, 2020. Featuring a newly expanded line-up of free, interactive events and activities—hosted at socially distanced venues through a growing digital hub at culturedays.ca/bc—BC Culture Days offers a bevy of diverse content to suit all levels of comfort and accessibility as communities navigate the complexities of COVID-19. From in-person painting and paper-making demonstrations to livestreamed plant ink and comic book workshops, from musical recordings to self-guided art and agricultural tours, the month-long celebration allows visitors to virtually criss-cross the country exploring the unexpected intersections of creative collaboration.

“More so than ever before, fostering connection, understanding, and healing through artistic expression is essential to our overall well being as we navigate these strange and challenging times,” says BC Culture Days Manager Nazanin Shoja. “It is through creative curiosity that we gain a deeper appreciation for our world, for our community, and about ourselves. A collective artistic experience offers a beacon of hope to those who are struggling—boosting community engagement, deepening social bonds, and reflecting a future full of possibility. By expanding this year’s celebration to a full month of innovative partnerships and unconventional mashups, we hope even greater numbers of British Columbians will be drawn to experience the transformative power of the arts.”

To help further support widespread community involvement within the artistic process, BC Culture Days has selected five exceptional emerging artists from across the province to act as cultural ambassadors—raising heightened awareness and boosting participation in their own communities, coupled with virtually across Canada. Ambassadors will explore their distinct artform in unexpected ways, pushing traditional boundaries to discover new cultural understandings. Each ambassador will be paired with a mentor to help steer their creative journey over three months, supported by provincial partner C*SARN (Canadian Senior Artists Resources Network) and The Hamber Foundation.

BC Culture Days 2020 Cultural Ambassadors:

The Afro-Latina writer and activist will produce a livestream festival, highlighting the connections between minority experiences and sex, sexuality and body ownership. Activities will include live music, comedy, spoken word, aphrodisiac cuisine, and burlesque.

An acrylic/graphic painter, poet and member of the Tl’azt’en First Nation, Damian will host an interactive presentation exploring the history and experience of First Nations peoples in Canada. Participants will be encouraged to create artwork inspired by their thoughts and experiences, informed by both the presentation and their own personal journey.

The queer emerging theatre artist, director, and producer will facilitate a 10-week performing arts workshop with queer, trans, and gender non-conforming youth in the Victoria area, culminating in a cabaret performed by the youth and hosted over Zoom.

The printmaking artist, whose work bridges traditional artisanal skills with contemporary art practices, will offer a guided tour and workshop on how to turn foraged native plant specimens into ink material for silkscreen printmaking, thereby highlighting the importance of conservation.

Based on a game of “exquisite corpse,” in which each participant consecutively adds to an artwork one element at a time, the French-Canadian graphic designer will collaborate with the Kelowna-area Francophone community on August 28th and 29th and will repeat the process with the Revelstoke community on September 25th to produce a collective line art and painting piece.

For full artist biographies, visit culturedays.ca/en/bc/2020ambassadors

BC Culture Days 2020 will officially kick off with a 45-minute virtual event on Thursday, September 24, 2020 at 4pm PST, hosted by the City of North Vancouver. The cultural event will feature performances by local artists, South Asian, Persian, and First Nations dancers, an Indigenous welcome ceremony by Dennis Thomas-Whonoak of Tsleil-Waututh Nation, messages from former Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture Lisa Beare and the City of North Vancouver Mayor Linda Buchanan, and introductory video clips from all five ambassadors. 

Culture Days raises the awareness, accessibility, participation, and engagement of Canadians in the arts and cultural life of their communities. It is a collaborative movement dedicated to providing free, hands-on, and interactive arts and culture activities to cities and towns across Canada. 

For more information on how to take part in BC Culture Days—including livestreaming options as well as a revised registration system that supports a wider array of both in-person and online events and activities—or to sign up for the BC Culture Days newsletter, visit culturedays.ca/bc.

For updates on BC Culture Days and the BC Culture Days cultural ambassadors, please follow BC Culture Days on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram. Use Hashtags: #bcculturedays #unexpectedintersections #virtualexperiences #2020virtualcelebration #behindthescenes #DIYexperiences #CollectiveCreation #Excursions

BC Culture Days gratefully acknowledges the generosity of its funders, collaborators, and supporters:

About BC Culture Days (culturedays.ca/bc)
BC Culture Days is administered through the Society to Bridge Arts and Community (Bridge Society), a registered charitable organization that has a mandate to promote awareness of arts and culture by establishing bridges between the general public, the private sector, arts organizations, and individual artists. Bridge Society staff work together with a volunteer provincial task force and steering committee, municipalities, and numerous community arts and cultural organizations to coordinate plans for the Culture Days weekend. For 2020, a revised registration system now supports in-person events, livestreamed events, digital recorded experiences, and self-guided activities. The Culture Days website will act as a promotional platform for creators to showcase thousands of virtual and in-person activities.

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Download Vancouver Island Highlights Release: PDF or Word