Last year, in August, I submitted a proposal for an exhibition at my local art gallery/ library. At Britannia library, there is a small community art gallery. It’s a very small and unassuming gallery that gives emerging and established community artists the opportunity to show and share their work with the community. The space is very much part of the library as patrons read their newspapers or lounge reading books in the couches of the gallery. I like the community setting and easy access to art.
I was happy that my proposal was accepted (this will be my first exhibition of personal work in over 12 years) and that I was paired with another artist so that we’ll be sharing the space — less wall to fill, less stress. But as often happens to me, a proposal that sounded good to me last year no longer feels as relevant today.
I had started with the plan to make pocket mirrors with one-of-a-kind collages on the other side that were going to be all about internal reflection. But around last October, I allowed a dormant interest to flourish — curiosity about the history of Vancouver.
A new year, a new plan
Having finished craft production & craft shows, and having moved out of a big studio at the end of December, I had made the decision to take a break from all of that, and to embark into a new phase of my creativity starting January. That I did.I have been exploring my creativity within my art journal a lot, and I have found a new focus for my exhibition to take place in August. It’s a bit strange, as come June I’ll have to have a few images for publicity, so I’m hoping that by them my focus will be clear and that half of the work will be done. I’m not sure that pocket mirrors are the right medium anymore!!
The Italians in Vancouver
So these days I’m reading books on the Italians in Vancouver and in particular about a very influential Italian-Canadian lawyer and judge. This all started because I wanted to know why there was an abandoned monument/plaza in my neighbourhood — lots of questions about this. Who was it built for, who wanted it built, what was it used for, why was it abandoned? At first I was investigating three different buildings in Vancouver but now I have found the one that really interests me and coincidentally the story behind it is Italian-focused (I am Italian-Canadian).
In other words…
I’m not following my original exhibition plan but I believe you have to be open to change and that you have to be excited about your work. And this to me, right now, is exciting — the story of Italians in Vancouver. I hope the rest — the medium, the content — will slowly emerge and make itself obvious.