Mexican Bus Ride front man, Hugh Smith, was in possession of shoe boxes full of historical photos. Smith has written a series of songs to accompany a slide presentation of some of the photos. (contributed)

Sooke ARTiFACTS Show combines photo history with original songs

A chance to make history live again says local artist

The Sooke Arts Council’s annual ARTiFACTS show will offer a unique glimpse at the history of Sooke, Port Renfrew, and the surrounding region – and the initiative all started with shoeboxes of photographs.

“When my parents passed away, I found that they had these boxes and boxes of old photos … some of them dating back to my grandparent’s time. I shared some of them with Diane (Moran) and she came up with the idea of putting together a presentation that would showcase the photos in a series so that others could see them,” said Hugh Smith, a resident of Port Renfrew and self-declared lover of history.

“My grandparents pioneered up here. My grandpa ran the mill, and the Baird family is related to me as well so we have some pretty deep roots in the community.”

Moran is a visual artist who divides her time between Port Renfrew and Sooke and is a lover of history and culture.

After hosting a presentation of a collection of the photos in Port Renfrew she was approached by Linda Gordon and the Sooke Arts Council to bring the display to Sooke as part of the ARTiFACTS Show, which runs from March 22 to April 28.

Beyond the photographic display, the show will feature a singular twist to the static presentation as Smith will be on hand to accompany a slide presentation of some of the photos with original songs that he has written especially for the display.

RELATED: Last year’s show was a hit

Smith describes himself as a sailor by trade (he’s worked as a marine engineer with the Canadian Forces auxiliary fleet and has worked the coast since 1983 on oil tankers with Imperial Oil) and says the music is just a serious hobby. In truth, his group, Mexican Bus Ride, has been a regular fixture in Port Renfrew and at a host of venues across B.C. for a very long time.

“I’ve written these songs as a way to make the photos come alive and to evoke some memories,” said Smith.

“I think it’s important that people know where they came from and, by writing these songs and marrying those songs to the photos it’s a way of bringing some of those people back to life.”

“This is all about the working history of the region. It’s important. People just don’t understand where things began and I think it’s important that they have some appreciation of where it started. It’s the foundation for building the future,” said Moran.

Now in its fifth year, the ARTiFACTS Show will feature the photo display and the music of Smith and maybe a few surprise musical guests on April 13, between noon and 4 p.m. at Sooke Region Museum.



mailto:tim.collins@sookenewsmirror.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

The Baird Family, pictured here, is related to Hugh Smith through marriage. The family is an important part of the photo display that will be part of the Artifacts show. (contributed)

Just Posted

COVID Creations opens at the Art Gallery

Rental and sales exhibition features works by 34 local artists

Daniel Lapp’s West Coast Kitchen Party

Join BC’s highly renowned fiddler and folk artist Daniel Lapp for a… Continue reading

Emily Carr show wraps up Canadian Tour at Royal BC Museum

Fresh Seeing opens with exclusive addition of T’anuu

Antimatter festival adapts

Hybrid model brings 100 films

Nanaimo singer Elise Boulanger releases her new single, ‘Cigarettes et rosé’ on Oct. 11. (Photo courtesy Laura Baldwinson)
Nanaimo singer releasing new single inspired by overheard conversations

Elise Boulanger to unveil ‘Cigarettes et rosé,’ accompanying ukulele tutorial video to come

Lee Porteous will be one of the performers at the Duncan Showroom’s storytelling event later this month. (Photo Submitted)
Duncan Showroom hosts storytellers series

Monthly shows will be broadcast live on YouTube

The 2020 City of Victoria Youth Poet Laureate Neko Smart will give up her seat for the next young poet in January. (Contributed/ Jeremy Loveday)
Nominations open for Victoria’s 2021 Youth Poet Laureate

Honourary one-year term reserved for region’s emerging poets

Joëlle Rabu and Nico Rhodes present No Regrets, a live-streamed and in-person show featuring the songs of French singer Édith Piaf at the Port Theatre on Oct. 17. (Photo courtesy Vital Image)
Nanaimo mother-son duo pay tribute to Édith Piaf in Nanaimo

Vocalist Joëlle Rabu and pianist and arranger Nico Rhodes present ‘No Regrets’ show Oct. 17

Local poets Ian Cognito and Pat Smekal are releasing their latest collection, ‘Old Bones and Battered Bookends.’ (Photo courtesy Literacy Central Vancouver Island/Image by Jacques Gamelin)
Nanaimo area poets release anthology on aging

Ian Cognito and Pat Smekal present ‘Old Bones and Battered Bookends’

The Arts Alive sculpture Winds of Time by Linda Lindsay which sat in front of the Pharmasave on Oak Bay Avenue in 2019 has been purchased anonymously and will be mounted in the King George Terrace parking lot. (Photo from OakBay.ca)
Winds of Time breezes onto Oak Bay lookout

Donor bought Arts Alive sculpture for Oak Bay lookout

Campbell River author tries out new genre for upcoming trilogy

Kristin Butcher kept her book grounded in real world, with some fantastical elements

Nanaimo psychedelic rock band marks 10th anniversary with new release

Moths and Locusts’ new LP ‘Exoplanets’ includes recordings made over the last 10 years

Most Read