Summer Break Week 2 — Grad Show

The 2019 Langara College Graduate Show has had its opening night, and there was a lot to see. And I am going to bury the lede in this post, so be sure to read it all.

But first, the back story. A week ago, we staged the wall panels in place in the main foyer of the “A” building. Then, a few days later and after several hours of work, the walls were up and ready for art. Here are the before and after photos of that setup:

On Wednesday the show was hung, and on Thursday evening opening night was had. Here’s a selection of images from the show, before it got so crowded that you couldn’t see anything. Note that this isn’t everything. Some of my photos were awful or didn’t do their contents justice. I’ve literally included only the ones that I could crop to something that looked reasonable in my mind, and I have probably missed nearly half of the show as a result.

As always, feel free to click on any of them to see a larger version.

I am not going to attempt to document each of the works shown in those photos. I can’t do it, for starters, and most of it wouldn’t mean anything to my readers. What I can do, is tell you a bit about opening night.

Langara College sits on the unceded Musqueam land, and right on the location of a Musqueam village. The college takes its relationship with the local, indigenous peoples seriously, and works to maintain a good relationship. As a result, the gathering opened with a song from two Elders, wishing us all welcome. Such things never get old for me, and I am honoured to participate in these events every time they happen.

Next we had a series of welcomes from various dignitaries… the department chair, the president of the college, a board member, the dean, and so on. All were enthusiastic and appreciative, as you might expect. As an aside, I have an ongoing relationship of sorts with the college president, and he and I enjoy kidding with each other whenever the chance arrives. I really do have a weird life.

Next up we get to the meat of the presentation: the awards. Each studio gets to present an award for the best student in the studio this term. A few come with some amount of money as well.

As I have said (and written) on many occasions, I find being around my fellow students inspiring. Every single one of them is a kick in the butt. I create better work as a result of being surrounded by such excellent artists and people. Picking who to give awards to seems challenging even to me, but for the instructors it must be nearly impossible.

I wasn’t taking notes, sadly, but I can tell you that everyone who got an award deserved it. Athena, a friend I am sure will be a powerhouse artist one day won the purchase award. One of her ceramic works is now in Langara’s collection as a result. And Jessica — my buddy from sculpture class — won the student choice award for her large sculpture, as well as the sculpture studio award. I will be back on campus in the coming week and I’ll see if I can’t get pictures of the award winning works for a future post.

As for me… I was nominated with two others to participate in a national art competition sponsored by BMO bank. There is a wrinkle having to do with when I plan to graduate, but this competition is a big deal and I am looking into it. More on this in a future post if/as it develops.

The show is up until May 4th. Please visit it if you can. A lot of students put their souls into these works, and it shows.

Sculptor/Artist. Former programmer. Former volunteer firefighter. Former fencer. Weirdest resume on the planet, I suspect.

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Jeff Powell

Jeff Powell

Sculptor/Artist. Former programmer. Former volunteer firefighter. Former fencer. Weirdest resume on the planet, I suspect.

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