Gol Nu Get Mote, the photography of Jeff Downer, will be featured at Fort Gallery. (Jeff Downer/Special to the Langley Advance Times)

Gol Nu Get Mote, the photography of Jeff Downer, will be featured at Fort Gallery. (Jeff Downer/Special to the Langley Advance Times)

Langley’s Fort Gallery explores the Fraser River in 2020 with a series of exhibitions

Gol Nu Get Mote by Vancouver-based photographer Jeff Downer is the first of four

Fort Gallery is launching a series of exhibitions that explore the social, cultural, and environmental significance of the Fraser River.

Alysha Creighton, exhibition chair, said the project stemmed from a change currently happening within the gallery.

“We decided to to the Fraser River Project this year because we’re in the midst of a transition as a gallery from the co-op model, where artists pay in to the collective to get an annual exhibition, to an artist run-centre model where artist will not have to pay to exhibit work,” Creighton said.

“It is our hope that this transition is both more sustainable and allows us to exhibit a more diverse group of artists to whom paying for an exhibition would make the gallery inaccessible,” she continued.

Gol Nu Get Mote by Vancouver-based photographer Jeff Downer, is the first of four exhibitions, on now until Feb. 15.

Downer’s project took him on a journey along the length of the Fraser from the Lower Mainland to Boston Bar to document the communities that line its shores.

Signs of decay and the passage of time mar the familiar landmarks in Downer’s photographs.

“I had a friend in Queensborough who couldn’t afford rent in the city, so she was living in a defunct shipping boat moored on the Fraser River,” Downer said of the origins that brought him to the location.

The photographer began snapping pictures of the New Westminster neighbourhood, eventually turning his attention to the historical aspects of the land.

“I had a teacher at Emily Carr who’s since become my mentor. They pointed out that all of my pictures had the Fraser River in them and that maybe I could do something with that,” he continued.

Downer wanted to showcase aspects of the fur trade, gold rush, and first nations with what he called a photographic survey, documenting how everything has changed overtime.

Many of his pictures were taken in 2012, but he managed to convince the Fort Gallery to let him take a few fresh ones to include in the gallery, including several Langley locations.

“I have one of the Church of the Holy Redeemer, but it’s since been renovated; the shingles are falling off in this picture and the steeple is cracked,” Downer noted. “I also panned for gold at the Fort Langley museum, which really are spray painted pebbles, but there’s a picture of that.”

The cryptic exhibition title Gol Nu Get Mote refers to a dilapidated sign that graces the facade of the Gold Nugget Motel in Yale, BC.

The exhibition features 20 of his images, enlarged and wallpapered around the space.

Downer’s work attempts to draw attention to the moments of strangeness and dissonance that arise at the intersection of colonization, industry, frontier mythologies and contemporary tourism.

He hopes people question the legacies that we are leaving in the rapidly developing Fraser River Valley when they see his work.

“The River project is a way of officially signalling this transition and the gallery’s intention to engage critically and thoughtfully with the pressing issues of our time,” Creighton added about the project in general. “The Fraser River of course has profoundly shaped Fort Langley socially, culturally, economically and environmentally. Also, in light of the recent IPCC report we know the impacts of climate change on the river will be profound: Fort Langley is located on a floodplain and the salmon are already facing significant challenges of warming waters, parasites and landslides.”

An opening reception and artist talk will be held Friday, 7 to 9 p.m.

Downer will lead a workshop in alternative DIY photographic print processes at the gallery Feb.9, 12 to 5 p.m.

More information and registration can be found at www.fortgallery.ca.

Fort Gallery is located in Fort Langley at 9048 Glover Rd, and hours are Wednesday to Saturday, 12 to 5 p.m.

READ MORE: Langley artists offer up a little mystery for the holiday season

_________________________________

Is there more to this story?

Email: ryan.uytdewilligen@langleyadvancetimes.com

Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter

_________________________________

Just Posted

Aldergrove journalist Dean Broughton and his father, Bert. (Special to The Star)
Leave it to Aldergrove resident to tell your living legacy

Journalist Dean Broughton found the importance of family stories by conversing with his father

Langley’s Brie King, seen here playing as a TWU Spartan, was a standout for Canada Saturday, June 12, as the team downed Serbia 3-1. (file)
John Diefenbaker and Dwight Eisenhower at the signing of the Columbia River Treaty, January 1961. (White House Photo Office)
Painful Truth: All elections are a roll of the dice

A federal election is coming, and anything could happen

A worker clears out damaged fixtures from a front office of Coast Capital Savings credit union in Brookswood 4145 - 200th Street on Saturday, June 12, after a car knocked out an exterior roof support beam and smashed in a window. (Dan Ferguson/Langley Advance Times)
Car takes out front window of credit union in Brookswood

Witnesses say it happened while the driver was trying to park

Susan Cairns (left) during one of the school foundation’s annual fundraisers. Now, on behalf of the organization, she’s released a statement of support in the wake of the 215 children’s bodies discovered at a former residential school in Kamloops. (Langley Advance Times files)
Langley School District Foundation called to action by ‘atrocity’

Board and executive director describe ordeal as a ‘travesty’, and vow to ‘be there’ with support and aid

At an outdoor drive-in convocation ceremony, Mount Royal University bestows an honorary Doctor of Laws on Blackfoot Elder and residential school survivor Clarence Wolfleg in Calgary on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
‘You didn’t get the best of me’: Residential school survivor gets honorary doctorate

Clarence Wolfleg receives honorary doctorate from Mount Royal University, the highest honour the school gives out

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod laughs while playing with Lucky the puppy outside their Chilliwack home on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: B.C. family finds ‘perfect’ puppy with limb difference for 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy has special bond with Lucky the puppy who was also born with limb difference

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

A million-dollar ticket was sold to an individual in Vernon from the Lotto Max draw Friday, June 11, 2021. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lottery ticket worth $1 million sold in Vernon

One lucky individual holds one of 20 tickets worth $1 million from Friday’s Lotto Max draw

“65 years, I’ve carried the stories in my mind and live it every day,” says Jack Kruger. (Athena Bonneau)
‘Maybe this time they will listen’: Survivor shares stories from B.C. residential school

Jack Kruger, living in Syilx territory, wasn’t surprised by news of 215 children’s remains found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School

A logging truck carries its load down the Elaho Valley near in Squamish, B.C. in this file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chuck Stoody
Squamish Nation calls for old-growth logging moratorium in its territory

The nation says 44% of old-growth forests in its 6,900-square kilometre territory are protected while the rest remain at risk

Flowers and cards are left at a makeshift memorial at a monument outside the former Kamloops Indian Residential School to honour the 215 children whose remains are believed to have been discovered buried near the city in Kamloops, B.C., on Monday, May 31, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
‘Pick a Sunday:’ Indigenous leaders ask Catholics to stay home, push for apology

Indigenous leaders are calling on Catholics to stand in solidarity with residential school survivors by not attending church services

“They will never be forgotten, every child matters,” says Sioux Valley Chief Jennifer Bone in a video statement June 1. (Screen grab)
104 ‘potential graves’ detected at site of former residential school in Manitoba

Sioux Valley Dakota Nation working to identify, repatriate students buried near former Brandon residential school

Most Read