Yes, public art day. This is where, I, the intrepid blogger, find myself sorely disappointed by a locked gallery door and so, instead of wasting my bus fare, decide to walk around Victoria looking at Public Art.

This past Wednesday disappointment came in the form of a”closed today” sign posted on the door of Boucherat Gallery. Behind those unopenable doors? The Knew show by Victoria’s rather curiously interesting trio, The Woodpile Collective. This was going to be my first experience with the WPC and I was suitably excited. However, because the gallery was closed on a Wednesday at 2 in the afternoon I was reduced to peering through dark windows. I have learned through t and e (trial/error) to never approach a gallery in Victoria on a Monday, and certainly never before noon, but I thought Wednesday at 2 would be ok. But hey, as the lemon said to the lime, “I’m not bitter”.


the woodpile collective through the window!

Don’t worry, Woodpile, I will be back!

Now! Onto Public Art. When I realized it was gonna be a PA Day, it didn’t take me long to decide on the poles down at the Royal BC Museum. Over the past year or so, I have developed a sudden (possibly) and abiding (probably) appreciation for the poles standing in Thunderbird Park. I must confess that for quite a while I just couldn’t see past those plastic tourist totem poles they used to sell on BC Ferries. Or the little plastic aboriginal girls dressed in buckskin you could buy at similarily white-oriented tourist shops. That stuff just took the magic out of the reality of aboriginal cultures and art, for me. Keep in mind, I’m a native of BC, so I’ve been bombarded by that made in china stuff all my life.

I feel like I’m treading on thin ice here, and I probably am. I don’t want to talk knowledgeably about native cultures or the reason for the poles or what they mean. I just want to point out how fascinating they are. How powerful. How artful.

Here are a few of my best photos and honestly if you’ve got a moment to spare, head over to see these creatures. You will not be disappointed.

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