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Photos: Vancouver Outsider Arts Festival arrives in Port Moody

A total of 32 artists are showing their works at PoMoArts in Port Moody as part of the annual Vancouver Outsider Arts Festival.

Paintings, sculptures, film works and photography from self-identifying “outsiders” will be up at a Port Moody gallery starting tomorrow, Jan. 11.

Dozens of artists involved with the annual Vancouver Outsider Arts Festival (VOAF) will be at PoMoArts (2425 St. Johns St.) for the opening reception from 6 to 8 p.m. to showcase and talk about their media.

PoMoArts gallery manager Janice Cotter selected the pieces to be exhibited after viewing the VOAF show at the Roundhouse Community Arts and Recreation Centre in Vancouver last October — the biggest VOAF display to date.

VOAF executive director Kristin Cheung told the Tri-City News today, Jan. 10, that the 2023 festival drew more than 200 entries from emerging, returning and professional artists who identify as being “outside” — e.g., immigrant, queer or non-binary — and whose works likely would not be selected for a mainstream gallery.

“Our definition of 'outsider' is quite broad on purpose,” Cheung said, noting the exhibiting artists are chosen at random to present more inclusive and equatable opportunities.

“We try to make it as low-barrier and accessible as possible for the artists.”

PoMoArts is the first and only stop, for now, for the VOAF touring show.

Still, it’s not the first time VOAF has displayed at PoMoArts: It also highlighted works in January 2022 from Alan Poon, Alex Lavrov, Althea Adams, Andrew Woods, BeAndra Jacqueline, Beth Wilks, Cassandra Yu, Charlene ‘Chuck’ Heilman, Charlie Sandeman, Jacqueline Primeau, Linda Haftner, Rojina (RJ) Farrokhnejad, Sandra Yuen and Shamsah Mohamed.

But, for this year’s display, which runs until March 4 in the Canadian Pacific Gallery, there are 32 participating artists. They are:

  • Alini Garcia
  • Andrea Grey
  • Ania Salmina
  • Barbara-Lynn Pollard (Blip Photography)
  • Ben Roback
  • Brandy Mars
  • Cathy Watters
  • Colin Mitchell
  • Courtney Lee
  • Daniel Poggenpoel
  • Erin Audley
  • Federico Airaudo
  • Hazel Yuhang Zhang
  • Jaclyn Lord-Purcell
  • Jasper Berehulke
  • Justine Clark
  • Katalina Guerrero
  • Komal Saxena
  • Lee James Abbott
  • LeiGH Press
  • LittleBenefit - Calen Michel
  • Madison Gill
  • Marianne Powley
  • Max Mueller-Langer
  • Nickie Lewis
  • Nicole Parekh
  • Sandra Yuen
  • Shamsah Mohamed
  • Sheila Letwiniuk
  • Tim Varro
  • Tom Moody
  • Vee CR

The VOAF touring exhibit is supported by the Community Art Council of Vancouver and the Port Coquitlam Community Foundation Theatre Society Legacy Fund.

Admission is free for the opening reception on Thursday, Jan. 11 from 6 to 8 p.m. The artists will be in attendance and refreshments will be served. Visit the PoMoArts website for more details and for the artist biographies. Also opening Thursday are the exhibits Targeted by Melanie Olson and Wood, Water, Stone: The Coquitlam River by Robert Ascroft and Sue A. Cowan.