By Claire Paradis
NAKUSP — You may have seen it, the fantastic ride of a bicycle called Paradise Express that’s currently occupying a downtown window to the delight of passersby. It’s one of Kate Tupper’s recent pieces, another of the well-known welder-sculptor’s atypical displays that liberates art from galleries and gets it out to people.
“I don’t think anyone’s going [to galleries] that needs it,” Tupper said, so why not get art out there to people who need it but might not even know they do?
And on Saturday, April 30 Tupper has invited everyone — residents and visitors alike — to take part in the Nakusp Art Party, getting artists to show and perform their work as part of a fundraiser that will help her complete her latest sculpture “Looking Aft”.
The plan is for Looking Aft to be mounted beneath the wheelhouse on the ferry between Galena and Shelter Bay when it’s done. The sculpture is a meditation on her time working on the ferry, and being part of such a large undertaking and strong team of workers. Tupper intends it to be another piece of public art, one that will be in prominent view of tourists to let them know the area is rich with artists.
The party idea came from a necessity for funding, and a necessity for fun. Part of the motivation came from the need to show granters in control of the pursestrings that she had money coming in from other sources, a common challenge among people asking funders for money. Well then, why not throw a party featuring local artists showing and selling their work, with ticket and drink proceeds going to “Looking Aft” and 100 per cent of any art sales going directly to the artists?
Another part of the art party push came after Tupper came back home to Nakusp from working at Shambhala as part of the Farm Deck team last year. At that point she hit a low and was feeling depressed about the state of culture in her hometown.
“I love Nakusp, it’s so beautiful but there’s not the things I want to do,” she revealed. After a few months of feeling down, Tupper came to the realization that, hey, why not, why couldn’t it happen here?
“‘Why don’t we have cool parties?’ Why don’t we make cool parties,” she remarked. Looking around she saw she was surrounded by a pile of local talent. And so the Art Party was born.
The Nakusp Art Party will start upstairs at the bright red iconic Old Firehall on April 30 at 7 p.m. with visual artists, poets, and more. Then things will be moving downstairs for dance performances, djs, visuals and even more for people with later bedtimes. Tupper has be playing with visuals and has designed pieces that will gently blow your retinas. Two large boards have been prepared as screens for maximum visual impact. No minors though, as there will be a bar.
If you want to come show your work, or want to come party with some art, you are most welcome. If you want to bring your art, you can get a hold of Kate at firstname.lastname@example.org and you can find tickets at Nakusp Esso and Betty’z Edje Boutique. There’s also a Facebook page for Art Party Nakusp.