The arts community has certainly had to make plenty of changes during the COVID-19 pandemic, but while the Langley Arts Council is no exception, their new normal has been filled with virtual classes, competitions, and even an online artisan market.
Amy Dyck, office manager at Langley Arts Council, said the pandemic has caused some big changes, which has been both good and bad for local artists.
“All of our art exhibitions that usually hang at the Township of Langley and City of Langley town halls, as well as at the Aldergrove Kinsmen Centre, instantly shut down,” she explained.
But, with the help of their newest staff member, Claire, a new website is now up and running, which is able to host a collection of virtual art exhibitions for our community.
“Because it is virtual, we have been able to open these up internationally as well – though we largely serve our local Langley community – and have some wonderful exhibitions,” Dyck explained.
Art critiques normally run monthly at the City of Langley Library, have gone virtual – along with a few drawing classes. Dyck said the arts council hopes to offer online drama classes in the near future as well.
“We hope to create some drama presentations with our youth musical theatre students, and some concerts hopefully as well, that will be broadcast live so they can be safely accessible from home,” she said. “These will happen over the next two months, finishing mid-November.”
The Langley Arts Council’s first Online Artisan Market is one of the newest experiments, which will be live at the langleyarts.ca website from Sept. 19th to Oct. 19.
“Each vendor is located in Metro Vancouver and the Fraser Valley, and there is a wide variety of products to shop,” Dyck explained. “[There’s] ceramics, artwork, jewelry, clothing, and more.”
There will be both pick-up and delivery options for the items purchased.
An annual B.C.-wide juried exhibition called artSpacific will feature more than 80 physical artworks on display from Sept. 25 to Nov. 4.
A COVID-safe reception will be held on Saturday, Oct. 3 from 2 to 4:30 p.m. at the Aldergrove Kinsmen Community Centre Main Hall Gallery – 26770 29 Ave.
People must reserve their spot with Langley Arts Council in order to attend so organizers can ensure a safe evening.
On now is a seniors group exhibition, running virtually until Oct. 26 at www.langleyarts.ca/aifs-online-galleries/seniors-exhibition.
People are encouraged to peruse and purchase works from the 65-plus crowd.
Dyck said there is plenty more plans for art shows and programming coming down the pipe – particularly art focused on capturing the perspective of people with disabilities.
“We feel that it is important to hear from all sorts of people, especially those whose voices and perspectives we may not have the privilege of experiencing as often,” Dyck added. “People with disabilities are being disproportionately affected by the pandemic, as their supports are harder to access and they are often immunocompromised and therefore more isolated.”
More information on upcoming events can be found at langleyarts.ca.
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