Crossing Bridges Outreach Show during Mental Health Month

19 October 2021 10:00 am

Crossing Bridges Outreach Show during Mental Health Month

Celebrating Health & Wellness through the Arts

Tuesday October 19 to Saturday November 6, 2021

Each year we hold a gallery exhibition to celebrate health and wellness through art and works created in our Crossing Bridges Arts Outreach program. October is recognized as Mental Health Awareness Month which seemed a fitting time to host this exhibition. The show will be a collection of artwork submitted by instructors and clients at some of the partner agencies we work with.

About Crossing Bridges: 

We believe the arts are for everyone, and that they have the power to heal, transform, connect, and develop skills in children, youth, adults and seniors, including those in crisis. Art changes lives.

Crossing Bridges is an outreach program started by the Kamloops Arts Council in 2013.that delivers high-quality arts workshops at no cost through partnerships with social service agencies in the Kamloops area. Crossing Bridges provides at-risk children, youth, families, adults and seniors with the chance to explore their creativity and build their self-confidence in a supportive environment.

Artists work alongside staff at local social service agencies to deliver visual arts workshops in a variety of mediums – including painting, photo-transfer, drawing, collage, mirror-etching, woodworking, fibre art and even painting of skateboard decks. Workshops may vary widely in topic, dependent on the needs, ages, and situations of participants at each centre.

The project culminates in an annual gallery exhibition that strives to unite all members of the community and celebrate health and wellness through art.

COVID-19 and health protocols has provided some unique challenges for our art workshop program during the past two years. Crossing Bridges art classes were traditionally in-person classes and as many of our partner agencies switched to online connections so too did our program. During the shutdown some classes were cancelled entirely, while others switched to digital or zoom workshops.  As things gradually reopen, we are happy that in-person classes have resumed at some agencies where there is adequate space to do so safely, while others are still on pause or continue by zoom.

About the exhibition: 

The act of making and creativity are tools in art therapy that can help to cope with stress and anxiety. Our Crossing Bridges instructors take all kinds of projects to the agencies they work with that are fun, creative and often uplifting. Their hope is to help their students engage in the act of art making and to forget for the moment some of their stresses, big or small. This exhibition will give artists and their students a chance to show artwork that has been created during the pandemic and share how their world has been affected during this strange time.