BC Culture Days Unveils Vibrant 14th Annual Celebration
BC Culture Days announces its inspiring series of community events designed for all ages and presented by artists and cultural organizations spanning across British Columbia, as part of the countrywide celebration set to take place Sept. 22 to Oct. 15, 2023.
Culture Days is a network of events, presentations, activities, workshops, and more, all aimed at showcasing, sharing, and exploring the artistic and cultural essence of each participating community.
The celebratory spirit in British Columbia is thriving, evidenced by the registration of over 350 events across 50 diverse communities. For the latest news and events being added, please visit culturedays.ca and follow @BCCultureDays on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.
With three weeks of free-to-attend and Pay-What-You-May interactive events, Culture Days invites the public to immerse themselves in the creativity and abundant cultural diversity that exists right in their backyards.
Event-goers can expect fun, friendly, and low-barrier activations, everything from art walks, cultural crawls, festivals, exhibitions and film screenings to workshops and collaborative art projects in visual arts, crafts, theatre, dance, music, and much more.
This year, BC Culture Days is celebrating the province’s expansive cultural landscape by putting the focus on a diverse group of B.C.-based emerging artists who are dedicated to making art that is accessible, approachable, and inclusive to all. Each year, BC Culture Days appoints emerging artists from across the province as ambassadors for arts and culture. Alongside pursuing mentorships with established artist mentors, the artists develop programming for Culture Days.
Through the A/I/R Ambassador Series, ten BC Culture Days ambassadors are hosting public activities during Culture Days. Guided by the theme of AIR (access, inclusion, and resilience), each ambassador will present low-barrier and accessibility-focused event(s) in their local areas.
“We are elated to witness how Culture Days organizers throughout the province are embracing the theme of accessibility in the arts,” says Nazanin Shoja, BC Culture Days Program Director.
“We anticipate that our events will foster a heightened awareness about inclusive practices in cultural programming, contributing to a more inclusive and diverse artistic community in B.C.”
The A/I/R Ambassador Series is created under the creed that creativity, artistic exploration, and collaborative artmaking are for everyone. The series stands to showcase diversity and inclusion, encouraging accessibility and community care as habitual priorities for arts and culture practitioners, while inspiring liberating, creative experiences for all arts and culture lovers and goers alike.
Through the events in this series, the artists will create safe, welcoming, and inspiring spaces for individuals and families to enjoy.
“All individuals want to connect with people in a heartfelt way, and yet individuals with disabilities remain so often isolated because needs and safety are not actually listened to,” says Regan Shrumm, BC Culture Days Ambassador from Victoria.
“My BC Culture Days programming attempts to break down some barriers that separate us by focusing on disability justice. I hope to connect communities together, particularly disabled communities, through joy and artmaking.”
As part of the program, the ambassadors have participated in specialized training, from organizations like Kickstart Disability Arts and Culture, to help them address physical, mental, and communicative barriers common in public events.
With support from BC Culture Days, the artists are crafting events with increased access points such as ASL interpretation, live captioning, and more.
These events aim to support public participation as well as greater participation from Deaf individuals and people with disabilities, neurodivergent, IBPOC, and 2SLGBTQQIA+ people as well as trauma survivors and other under-represented communities who will gather to connect, share, learn, and explore through arts and culture.