Call to Artists who have the Spirit of the Okanagan
The annual callout to Thompson Okanagan Artists to have the opportunity for a presence at Kelowna International Airport (YLW) in 2017 runs from January 1 to 31st.
All artists who live and work in the Thompson Okanagan area, from Kamloops to Osoyoos, are welcome to submit their work for the art kiosk in the YLW departures lounge. The kiosk, branded “Spirit of the Okanagan,” is managed by Suk’wtemsqilxw West Kelowna Arts Council (SWAC).
Artists are selected annually via jury, with the focus on the Okanagan theme and quality of work. The cost to submit work for jurying is $30, which doubles as a membership fee to SWAC. Twenty artists will be selected in 2017, ideally with half of those artists being Indigenous and half non-Indigenous, in keeping with the philosophy of the Arts Council.
“The goal of the airport art kiosk is to sell, and SWAC is proud to say revenue to Okanagan artists in our first year is around $20,000. Considering the majority of those sales are between $30 and $70, that’s quite outstanding,” said Julia Trops, SWAC Chair and Spirit of the Okanagan Founder. “We have a very defined set of protocols for the artists, and having this structure is what has made the Spirit of the Okanagan kiosk successful.”
Skyway Gourmet Ventures Inc. processes the sales of artwork, with the artist paying a 30 per cent commission. Revenue generation from the artwork is the priority, and chosen works should be considered mementos, capturing experiences throughout the valley. All artwork must be original and Okanagan themed, creating an authentic, tangible memory for visitors.
“We’re very pleased to support this program as it creates a sense of place for our passengers,” said John Devitt, YLW’s Manager of Business Development and Community Relations. “With nearly 2,500 travellers through the departures lounge every day, it’s also a great opportunity for local artists to gain exposure.”
Future possibilities at YLW for Thompson Okanagan artists include the artwork displays, to work in the departures lounge and to speak or participate in workshops. YLW plays a vital part in the economic development and prosperity of the Okanagan Valley, and the door is now opened for artists to be included.
For more information, contact:
Suk’wtemsqilxw West Kelowna Arts Council Chair