Canoe Art Project – Where Art & the Waterway Meet

Posted May 14th, 2014

Canoe Art Project – Where Art & the Waterway Meet

The Welland Recreational Canal Corporation and the Welland Arts and Culture Advisory Committee are partnering together to create a spectacular and artistic legacy for the City of Welland through the Canoe Art Project; a unique initiative involving local artists creating works of art using traditional canoes as canvases on which to paint.

The completed canoes will be mounted for display, turning them into eye catching sculptures throughout the City of Welland. These Canoe Art sculptures will display images and artwork inspired by Welland's heritage, sporting history, and contemporary culture.  Each piece of art will be one­-of-a-kind and will reflect the vision of the artists, each of whom will be selected through a public call for submissions and the final decision regarding selection is determined by the Welland Arts & Culture Advisory Committee; artist selection is still ongoing.

“I am proud of Welland and the improvements it is making, especially the Welland International Flatwater Centre as it promotes a healthy lifestyle and its attention to our beautiful waterway. I was also intrigued by the challenge of such an interesting project. I have painted doors, floors, ceilings, saws, bed sheets, milk cans and t-shirts – but never a canoe!” excitedly explained the first artist to be selected for the Canoe Art Project, Darlene Kisur – dePagter. “My thanks to the Welland Arts & Culture Committee and the Welland Recreational Canal Corporation for giving me a chance to do something different as an artist - this is a fantastic creative venture!”

Saturday, May 10th marked the Canoe Art Project launch at the Seaway Mall. In conjunction with speakers addressing the importance both the Arts & Culture scene in Welland as well as highlighting the role of Welland’s Waterway, the first canoe to be painted was presented to the public. The artist, Darlene Kisur – dePagter, will be painting the canoe in the Ernie Allen Court of the Seaway Mall from Saturday, May 10th until Saturday, May 16th with the project showcased during regular mall hours.

In addition, the Canoe Art Project Youth Art Contest officially begins accepting submissions now through till June 6th. Individuals 18 years of age and younger that are living in the Niagara Region are encouraged to participate in this amazing opportunity to have their art showcased in a public setting. Interested applicants are encouraged to illustrate what a piece of work that best describes Welland and its community on a canoe template, found at www.canalcorp.ca or at the Welland Wellness Community Complex. Submissions will be selected by a Selections Committee composed of knowledgeable artists and arts professionals.  The winner of the contest will have their vision turned into a reality and painted on a life-size canoe to be displayed throughout Welland; their exposure will have endless possibilities. Submission details can be found at the end of this release.

“This is a great opportunity for local and regional artists to promote and display their talents and skills; the canoe will present artist with a unique canvas to stretch the creative abilities” said George Doros, Chair of the Welland Arts and Culture Advisory Committee.

The Canoe Art Project proposes a meaningful impact within the City of Welland and will allow for both an artistic and Waterway legacy to flourish. Each piece of art will display the creative talents of local artists as well as promoting the ongoing growth and success of Welland’s flatwater sports hosting industry. It is meant to be a unifying project, bringing a wide array of organizations as well as backgrounds together through this fresh and modern artistic initiative.

Project Manager, Richard Dalton, expressed that "The Canoe Art Project will be a unique and impressive way to promote Welland's thriving flatwater sport scene, while supporting and recognizing local artistic talent.  Welland will host the Pan American Games canoe sprint competition next summer which provides the opportunity for our community see and experience the games in a special way.  It's important that everyone in Welland is aware of this once in a lifetime event, and feels the positive impact it will bring.  I think the Canoe Art Project be a big part of that activation."

The Welland Recreational Waterway is part of the fabric of the local community.  Its pristine water, scenic beauty and historical significance are integral to the character of the City of Welland.  In modern times, the Waterway has grown to become a world class sporting event destination, premiere concert and artistic event location, and a beautiful park for local citizens and visitors alike to enjoy all that nature has to offer.  The Canoe Art Project seeks to celebrate and memorialize this 'jewel of the City', by creating meaningful pieces of art depicting images related to the Waterway.

For more information regarding, please visit www.canalcorp.ca.

For all inquiries regarding the Canoe Art Project, please contact canoeartproject@canalcorp.ca

Interested applicants, of both the Youth Art Contest and the Call for Artists, are encouraged to mail submissions to:

The Arts & Culture Coordinator

c/o The City of Welland

Welland Community Wellness Complex

145 Lincoln Street, Welland ON L3B 6E1

www.welland.ca

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For further information regarding this media release, please contact:

Stephen Fischer                                                            Madison Smith                                                            

Executive Director                                                        Public Relations, Communications                          

Welland Recreational Canal Corporation                 Welland Recreational Canal Corporation              

905.735.1700 ext. 2311                                               905.735-1700 ext 2311                                          

sfischer@canalcorp.ca                                            msmith@canalcorp.ca

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