August 5 to September 19, 1999
The Prince George downtown core, for the residents of this community, our urban centre represents a conundrum. It is a place that defies precise description because of the extensive human activity occurring at different times and the varying condition of the environment. The artists who have participated in the exhibition, Images of Downtown, have examined both the positive and negative aspects of our urban centre. They have immersed themselves in the life of the area and have reflected in their work the vitality and apathy existing there. The work challenges the viewer to acknowledge and question issues, both positive and negative, of which we seem to be constantly aware.
For years, Prince George residents have pondered the perceived dilemma of our city core. The issues that face us care extensive and vary in their seriousness. They include: crime, substance abuse, homelessness, prostitution, reduced shopping venues, lack of sufficient parking, the neglect of buildings, etc. Some of these problems are more visible than others and some of them prefer to ignore or avoid as they do not directly touch our lives.
There is a positive aspect of our downtown which hints the economic and cultural potential of the area. Development (Courthouse, Regional District building, Civic Centre and Art Gallery), unique shipping venues, nightclubs/bars and restaurants create employment opportunities and places for social interaction, as well as a sense of civic pride of our city’s accomplishments.
The work in this exhibition attempts to tap into the different facets of Prince George’s urban landscape and we are once again made conscious of the puzzle that is our downtown core. In viewing the artwork we are confronted with the challenge of how to bridge the dichotomy that exists between the positive and negative aspects of our urban centre and in doing so improve the quality of life for every Prince George resident.
I would like to thank all of the artists of the Artists’ Workshop for the effort and thought they have put into Images of Downtown. I particularly would like to acknowledge David Whittaker for the extra effort he has put into organizing this exhibition. Also, we gratefully acknowledge the generous support of the BC Arts Council and the Community Arts Council of the Prince George and District.
This exhibition featured artwork by:
David Ainley, Marika Ainley, Joy Cotter, Djordjevich, Jennifer Ferries, Gerry Garrett, Tom Grogan, Ruth Hansen, Carolyn Hayward, Joan Jamieson, Arch Jones, Valerie Martel, Barbara Olsen, Maureen Pretty, Marlene Roberts, Shirley-Ann Royer, Joanna Smythe June Swanky Parker, Sylvia Swannumson and David Whittaker.
Click here to see what's currently going on!