Happy Birthday AGA!

January 31, 2011 at 12:05 pm (Edmonton, Events, Food, Photography) (, , , , , , )

Art Gallery of Alberta anniversary party

On January 30, 2011 the Art Gallery of Alberta celebrated its first anniversary, and held a bit of a party. Hugh and I went down to check it out, and were treated to free coffee and cupcakes with icing in the AGA’s colours. The cupcakes, made by Big City Cupcakes were delicious, though almost unbearably sweet.

Free cupcakes!

We also took in the Matisse exhibit, the first time at our own pace, and a second time as part of a free guided tour. We also saw a very interesting exhibit by Canadian artist Brian Jungen, who created two ‘fossil reconstructions’ using nothing but plastic lawn chairs. Very cool. Also very cool was the fact that the artist allowed photography of his work, which means I was able to get a shot inside the actual exhibit:

Shapeshifter (2000) and Cetology (2002)

Despite the naysaying by all the ‘pothole people’ while the AGA was under construction, and those who decry the building as ‘ugly’ even today, the AGA has had a tremendous first year. More than 111,000 people have come through the doors, compared to 20,000 visitors per year to the old Edmonton Art Gallery which the AGA has replaced. Membership sales are at 5,300 as compared to 1,650 from the year before.

As for the building itself, it is 85,000 square feet, of which 30,000 is dedicated exhibition space. Designed by Randall Stout (former protege of Frank Gehry) and built to LEED standards, the building is a stunning showcase located right in the heart of downtown Edmonton.

AGA architect Randall Stout

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2010 Downtown Penticton Street Dance

August 28, 2010 at 4:03 pm (Events, Penticton)

Calum Hughes and members of Kinship rocked the block.

On August 27, 2010 the Downtown Penticton Association along with many other sponsors closed down three blocks of Main Street from 7-10pm for the Downtown Penticton Street Dance. The event featured four stages with several bands and DJs entertaining the crowd concurrently. The event also featured buskers, entertainers, fire spinners, belly dancers, street performers, dance troops, vendors and over a dozen kids’ activities such as bouncy castles and climbing walls.

A stiltwalker entertains the crowd. Not sure what that gear on her hip is.

I went down to check it out with my son and found it very well attended, as in elbowing your way through a packed crowd well attended. A lot of the musical entertainment was either hokey or the same groups who play every festival in this town ever, but I was impressed with the celtic band Kinship. Not sure but I think they are out of Kelowna. Not a huge fan of this type of music, but they were full of energy, almost to the point of knocking the small trailer that served as a stage right off its wheels. The crowd was certainly into their performance.

Dylan poses with some art in front of the Tumbleweed Gallery. It's for sale, you could own this!

My understanding is that this event is a kickoff to the Ironman race which takes place on Sunday. All in all we had a great time, and I hope it becomes an annual event.

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