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Colwood artist crafts interactive, responsive showcase for BC Culture Days

Viewers called on to share response on art
Self-Indulgence, Gear Head sculpture by Laura Rechwan. (Courtesy Laura Rechwan)

One Colwood artist is calling for creatives to fill an online exhibition celebrating BC Culture Days.

Greater Victoria ambassador for the event, artist Laura Rechwan, is crafting an online art exhibition inviting creatives and the community into a cross-disciplinary dialogue.

Long before her current title as BC Culture Days ambassador, the Colwood visual artist was a champion of her peers with a love for promoting other artists, and creating opportunities and spaces for art.

“While I was working for Coast Collective there was a show that we organized that had artists respond to poets. The biggest feedback we received was that the poets wanted to be back on the other side of things,” she said. That was followed by others, such as musicians, looking to be involved. She took that feedback and ran with it.

“Crossing those boundaries between disciplines is a really important part of the message,” she said.

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The Interchange Online Gallery does just that. Artists are invited to create a reaction to the existing pieces at Then the curated collaborative art showcase goes online.

The deadline for submissions is Sept. 20 with an official opening event via Zoom on Sept. 24, with the show running through BC Culture Days Sept. 24 to Oct. 24.

During that month, absolutely anyone can submit a response.

“That’s one of the most exciting parts, absolutely anyone can make a response. The only criteria is that they’re family-friendly,” she said. “People can create their responses and see them live almost right away.”

Interact and learn more at

Reflecting on the challenges of the past year, the 2021 BC Culture Days theme is RE:IMAGINE, RE:CONNECT and RE:GENERATE. The goal is to guide residents out of isolation through creative connection.

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The 12th annual celebration of arts and culture includes a plethora of options geared towards all comfort levels and abiding by current public health recommendations, including socially distanced outdoor and pre-registered indoor events, pre-recorded videos, livestream presentations, self-guided activities, and more.

Activities kick off with a new video series RE:GENERATE, showcasing the creative resilience of five remote or rural B.C. communities, as they adapt to COVID-19 restrictions and re-emerge with inspiring ideas for the future. Each week of the month-long event, several new videos will be released online, featuring event coverage and interviews from one of five communities – Prince Rupert, Bella Coola, Sooke, Salmon Arm, and Kimberley.

There will also be a pre-recorded welcome ceremony from Chief Kwakwee Baker, member of the Squamish First Nation, as well as a pre-recorded provincial proclamation from B.C. Minister of Tourism, Arts, Culture and Sport Melanie Mark.

Find live streaming options and registration for other events at

Christine van Reeuwyk

About the Author: Christine van Reeuwyk

Longtime journalist with the Greater Victoria news team.
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