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Monthly art tour to showcase West Van's plethora of public art

The First Thursdays Art Walk will run once a month from May until September, starting May 4 in West Van's Ambleside and Dundarave neighbourhoods
The free, monthly art tour will showcase West Vancouver's galleries and public art.

Dotted with galleries and teeming with esthetically pleasing nooks and crannies, there is no alternative but to take the scenic route when in West Vancouver.

Starting this Thursday, May 4, and taking place the first Thursday of every month until September, the West Vancouver Community Arts Council will celebrate the beauty of Ambleside and Dundarave with an art walk, designed to help locals discover and champion local art and artists.

Dubbed First Thursdays Art Walk, the self-guided tour will weave through local galleries, community spaces and pieces of public art, checking off 30 pieces along the way.

“It is a great way to discover all of the arts and culture offerings that are here in West Vancouver, and to familiarize yourself with the Ambleside and Dunderave neighbourhood if you’re new to the area or if you’re just visiting the North Shore,” said the West Vancouver Community Arts Council’s Steven Snider.

“There will likely be some things, like pieces of public art, that people might not even realize are there, or different types of activities going on at these art galleries that people aren’t usually aware of,” he said.

Features on the billing include exhibitions from the recently opened Ferry Building Gallery, the Silk Purse Arts Centre, the West Vancouver Art Museum and the West Vancouver Memorial Library, with each open from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. and free to the public.

The venues will host work from local artists alongside tours, art demonstrations, live music, workshops and opportunities to meet exhibiting artists and local creatives.

On May 4 at the Music Box, wanderers will be encouraged to get involved and create their own pieces, with Indigenous artist James Groening hosting a painting workshop inspired by the story of Turtle Island and his own community’s Woodland Art style of painting.

Over at the Ferry Building Gallery, artist Leslie Gould will be hosting an experiential life drawing demo, while the Silk Purse Arts Centre will reel in the crowds with artist talks from printmaker Rick Herdman and abstract artist Colette Tan, as well as live music from pianists Lively Li and Paniz Moslehi.

For both big and little kids who have been champing at the bit to see Paul Hetherington’s Bricktacular West Coast Modern Show, an exhibition of local landmarks created entirely by LEGO pieces, the West Vancouver Memorial Library will be offering a sneak peek.

“The crawl is great for everyone, all ages, families and friends. It doesn’t really matter if you’re well versed in arts,” said Snider. “It’s just a great experience for anyone to just see what’s out there, and see what creative people are doing in the community.”

For more information on the monthly event visit the First Thursdays Art Walk website

Mina Kerr-Lazenby is the North Shore News’ Indigenous and civic affairs reporter. This reporting beat is made possible by the Local Journalism Initiative.

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