Eastside Arts Society invites art lovers to the art-making process at 3rd Annual CREATE! Arts Festival

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Eastside Arts Society invites art lovers to the art-making process at 3rd Annual CREATE! Arts Festival
Serena Chu Mural Image.

VANCOUVER, BC.- Eastside Arts Society presents the return of its highly anticipated two-day summer art-making event, CREATE! Arts Festival, taking place at Strathcona Park on Saturday, July 22 and at various Eastside Arts District studios on Sunday, July 23, 2023. A community initiative designed to welcome guests to explore, learn, and create art together with local artists, CREATE! Arts Festival features a wide variety of accessible visual and performing arts workshops for adults and youth, including watercolour painting, needle felting, indigo dying, pottery, glass fusing, photography, ukulele, Salish singing, storytelling, and much more.

“Following two incredible years growing our new summertime art-making event, we are thrilled to welcome the CREATE! Arts Festival back for its third year, with even more offerings for people of all ages and abilities to explore their creative expression in collaboration with the Eastside Arts District community,” says Esther Rausenberg, Artistic & Executive Director of EAS. “In addition to a variety of art workshops, demonstrations, and public participation art installations, we are also incredibly proud to introduce our brand new Festival Art Shop, featuring a curated selection of arts and crafts all handmade by local artists.”

On Saturday, July 22, the festival will offer a series of outdoor art-making workshops taught by more than 15 artists who live and/or work in the Eastside Arts District, many of whom will be participating in CREATE! Arts Festival for the first time. Adult and youth workshops will be hosted by Taaye Wong, Tanna Po, Suzan Marczak, Nima Nasiri, Naomi Yamamoto, Niki Holmes, Ross den Otter, Daphne Roubini, Russell Wallace, Naomi Steinberg, Nicole Caspillo, Nathaniel Marchand, Eri Ishii, and Chantal Cardinal (FELT à la main with LOVE). A children and youth workshop will be hosted by Amberlie Perkin and an all-abilities workshop by Alternative Creations Studio.

Saturday festivities at Strathcona Park will also include a general admission CREATE! Art Zone. Art demonstrations include painting, pottery, and glass beading from Francis Tiffany, Julia Chirka (summer skool), and members of Terminal City Glass Co-op. Public participation art projects include a life-size colouring mural with Serena Chu of Chu Chu, squeegee art with Joanne Probyn, and the building and performing of two giant crow puppets – in honour of Eastside Arts Society’s unofficial mascot – with Jacquie Rolston. Opus Art Supplies will also have a printmaking activation, as part of the CREATE! Art Zone.

A selection of local handmade artworks and goods, curated by OH Studio Project, will be available at the Festival Art Shop. On site, visitors can also enjoy the festival’s fully licensed beer garden serving beer, cider, and wine, from Strange Fellows Brewing, as well as a delicious assortment of food from a collection of food trucks, including Earnest Ice Cream, Wak Wak Burger, Mahshiko, and Camion Café.

July 22 will see the return of the beloved crowd favourite event, the 8th Annual Art! Bike! Beer! Crawl Fundraiser and tour, which for the first time will end at the CREATE! Arts Festival grounds where attendees will enjoy a final tasting pint, food, raffle, and the CREATE! Art Zone.

Festival activities will move indoors on Sunday, July 23, connecting participants with art production spaces in neighbouring Eastside art studios, with additional art workshops hosted by members of the Terminal City Glass Co-op, Richard Tetrault, Sonya Iwasiuk, Grace Lee (eikcam ceramics), and Naomi Yamamoto.

Workshops are $35 + GST for youth/adults, with the exception of Amberlie Perkin’s workshop for children/youth at $20 + GST. Children under the age of 12 must be supervised by an adult. The general public can access festival activities at Strathcona Park – including the CREATE! Art Zone, Festival Art Shop, beer garden, and food trucks for a $5 general admission fee (children under age 12 are free). For full festival details and workshop registration, visit createartsfestival.ca.

The CREATE! Arts Festival is made possible through the generous support of Opus Art Supplies, Intergulf Development Group, Onni Group, R & D Group, Strathcona Business Improvement Association, Stonehouse Team, Beedie, Westbank/Crombie REIT, La Casa Gelato, Alternative Creations Studio, Stir Vancouver, City of Vancouver, Province of British Columbia, Canadian Heritage/Government of Canada, and Vancouver Foundation.

Eastside Arts Society

The Eastside Arts Society (EAS) is an arts organization dedicated to connecting the public with the visual and performing arts. EAS produces the annual Culture Crawl Visual Arts, Design and Craft Festival held in November that involves artists on Vancouver’s Eastside opening their studio to the public. The event involves painters, jewellers, sculptors, furniture makers, weavers, potters, printmakers, photographers, and glassblowers; from emerging artists to those internationally established. EAS produces additional programming including Talking Art, juried exhibits, Studio 101 arts programming for inner-city children, and the Moving Art Video series.

In 2021, EAS began a pioneering new initiative: developing an Eastside Arts District (EAD). The EAD will transform the arts and cultural assets in the Eastside from an informal and grassroots network of stakeholders, into a formalized organization that will assist in securing long-term facilities for artists and cultural venues. The EAS also produces the CREATE! Arts Festival.

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