Sun Peaks Art Zone comes off the hill for a special exhibition

The Kamloops Art Council galleries are hosting the Sun Peaks Art Zone for their first exhibition

Sun Peaks Art Zone, a group of artists from Sun Peaks and Kamloops, are bringing their work to the Kamloops Art Council to display for the very first time as a group.

From March 26 to April 17, “Off the Hill” by the Sun Peaks Art Zone will be displayed at the Kamloops Arts Council galleries in the main room and hallways. “On the Hill – Images in and around Sun Peaks” by Bill Fell will also be taking place in the KAC Alcove Gallery at the same time.

Bill Fell is a director of Art Zone and has been the event coordinator for these two exhibitions at the Kamloops Arts Council.

“The organization itself, what we’re trying to do is promote art in Sun Peaks,” Fell said, “make people aware of what’s available, [and] what our artists are capable of doing.”

These two exhibitions balance each other out, as Art Zone’s exhibition is a collaboration of artwork from artists in the Sun Peak and Kamloops area, and Fell’s work is of images around the Sun Peaks area.

“They called theirs ‘Off the Hill’ because it’s people from Sun Peaks bringing things off the hill and down here,” Fell said. “‘On the Hill,’ that’s what I call [my] exhibition, meaning that all of the pieces that are here are taken in Sun Peaks or in the very close proximity to Sun Peaks.”

This is the first exhibition Sun Peaks Art Zone has done outside of Sun Peaks and features artwork from both emerging and established artists.

“It gives a number of people an opportunity to put their stuff out there for people to see,” Fell said. “There are some people who I know in the group exhibit out here who have been doing things for quite a number of years, and there are also people who this is their very first time.”

Initially, the group intended to put the art show on a year ago, but it was delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Easily enough, the group contacted the various artists involved with Art Zone, and anyone could register to have their work displayed in the exhibition.

“We had our own email mailing list, and a couple of months ago, I started with that and just sending out notices to everyone that were Art Zone members.” Fell said the organization wanted to “give everyone a chance and put it out there and see what the reaction is” and that the exhibition was not juried.

Fell’s show is separate from the other artists, as it features his work with film photography.

“I just go out and poke around and see what conditions, the lighting or whatever looks conducive to it and go out and shoot,” Fell said. “I’ve been doing photography for a number of years now, and I just like to get into the darkroom.”

The exhibition is free to view at the Kamloops Arts Council galleries and will be available to see from March 26 to April 17, 2021. Due to restrictions regarding gatherings, only four people are allowed in the Old Courthouse Cultural Centre at a time and are required to wear masks when inside the building.

“I’m just hoping that COVID doesn’t keep people away,” Fell said, “and they get in here and have an opportunity to see what a bunch of very talented amateur artists are doing.”