Artist Doug Smarch Jr. - "Ice and Flowers"
Artist Doug Smarch Jr. with his work "Ice and Flowers" at the Haines Junction Visitor Information Centre. The work is being unveiled during Aboriginal Day celebrations at the Da Kų Cultural Centre.
June 18, 2012
Yukon art is front and centre at Haines Junction visitor services
WHITEHORSE—Art and craft work by Yukon artists will be highlighted at the Haines Junction Visitor Information Centre in the Da Kų Cultural Centre, where Doug Smarch Jr.’s monumental Ice and Flowers is being unveiled for the facility’s opening on June 21.
“It was only natural to make art and craft the focus for Yukon’s visitor facility in Haines Junction, with Doug Smarch Jr.’s piece illuminated by the sky and mountains beyond,” Tourism and Culture Minister Mike Nixon said. “Showcasing our visual arts in this remarkable setting is a terrific way of sharing our diverse culture with visitors as they travel through the Kluane region.”
Smarch Jr.’s Ice and Flowers consists of 16 translucent acrylic masks suspended from the building’s ceiling, flower designs inspired by Southern Tutchone beadwork on the walls and a circular base filled with local river rocks.
“Ice and Flowers is the culture of Yukon,” Smarch Jr. said. “There is a lot of history here, of people who came from the coast to trade. I wanted the piece to reflect the experience of living through the seasons and how, from history to present, our faces are reflected in droplets of water in the spring; you don’t notice it, but they’re there. You can’t tie one culture to it. We’re all here and we all experience it. It comes down to having the same conversation every spring.”
The work of 40 other artists was also acquired for the visitor information centre for permanent and rotating displays. Pieces from the Yukon Permanent Art Collection will be exhibited at the centre as well.