It’s a perspective through the eyes of some of the youngest members of the community.
The current White Rock Museum and Archives exhibit, Semiahmoo Bay and Beyond: The Hidden Secrets of White Rock Waters, is – as one would expect – much concerned with history, featuring the scrupulously researched marine art of Dale Bhyre, as well as artifacts chosen from the museum’s collection to highlight how the community connected with local waters through different eras of its evolution.
But one wall is devoted to the viewpoint of Star of the Sea Elementary children, who provide their own charming interpretations of the marine life of Semiahmoo Bay and its environs as part of the museum’s continuing Art Wall program.
Nancy Alliston, who co-ordinates the program with Linda Thomas (with Marilyn Murphy as reception co-ordinator) said part of the pleasure of the process is seeing the creativity of the young artists around each current theme in the museum.
“We had on school that was a little reluctant when we suggested a theme, but we felt this was a really good step for us, and the schools have really been getting into the themes.”
The current display, which had its opening reception June 7, marks the fourth contribution from a local school and the second from an elementary (the first was by students of Chantrell Creek Elementary, while Elgin Park Secondary and Southridge Senior School have taken the other two-month time slots).
“I’m delighted that all of the schools have asked to come back,” Alliston said.
“And when we first talked to Star of the Sea about it, they said it was an honour to be asked.”
The Star of the Sea exhibit, which features the work of students from Kindergarten to Grade 6, is a typically colorful excursion into the realm of childrens’ imagination, with a wide range of techniques and media and surprisingly strong adherence to the theme.
The program is a great way for children and teens to begin to be involved with the community’s museum, Alliston agreed, noting that their lively interest bodes well for the future of the facility.
“The children are so thrilled when they are invited to come to the opening reception and talk about their art,” she said.
“We encourage the schools to highlight the work of children who might not otherwise have an opportunity like this – this gives them an opportunity to shine,” she said.
While private and public schools have been featured so far, Alliston said she and Thomas are also interested, for the future, in including the work of home-schooled and delivered (online) education students.
Semiahmoo Bay and Beyond: The Hidden Secrets of White Rock Waters continues at the museum until Sept. 3.
For more information, call 604-542-2222 or visit www.whiterock.museum.bc.ca