Community Papers

A tour packed with culture

Get a grip on the wide ranging variety of compelling artistic and cultural attractions in the Castlegar/ Robson/ Beasley corridor.

The Columbia Basin Culture Tour is coming up August 9-10 from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

The tour is arranged in a way that puts you in control of what (and how much) you take in, and it’s free.

Here’s a two-day window of opportunity, inviting you into cradles of creativity-the inner reaches of artist’s studios, museums, galleries and heritage sites. Some of these gems are not normally in public view. It’s a chance to see demonstrations, new exhibitions and collections and meet the people making it happen.

Just grab a map, your Culture Tour Directory and go!

Please note that Venue #14, Marilyn’s House of Rhythm and Dance has unfortunately been cancelled for the tour.

New to the Culture Tour this year are Linda and Ted Crosfield whose studios are based in Ootischenia. Linda is a poet, editor, book artist, blogger and publisher who produces limited edition books. On the tour she will have examples of books she’s made and will demonstrate a quick and easy way to sew a book together. Ted Crosfield works from a separate studio at the same location, where you will be able to watch a demonstration of wood turning. He will also have turning wood and planks available including many varied bowl forms.

Opposite the airport in Castlegar, at the Doukhobor Discovery Centre you will find the Selkirk Spinners and Weavers Guild. They are a non-profit organization that has been active in the West Kootenays since 1972. View their lovely handcrafted work in a new, larger space. Just down the road is the Kootenay Gallery of Art, which provides a professional venue for regional as well as national artists to show and sell their work. During the Culture Tour, see “Call and Response”, an exhibition featuring sculptures in metal and glass created by Brent Bukowski. A wonderful gift shop on- site contains the work of over 100 local artists and craftspeople.

In Downtown Castlegar, Sculpturewalk is an outdoor exhibit of new and original sculptures. Featuring artists from across North America, viewers can vote for their favourite via ballot. The People’s Choice is purchased by the City of Castlegar for the permanent collection. On to Robson, visit Mirja Vahala and view her distinctive landscape paintings. Tour her spacious art instruction studio at Windborne B&B and discover opportunities to learn how to draw and paint or to develop your art skills. Sandra Donohue is a painter and a weaver who works from her home studio in Robson. The lighter side of life inspires Sandra, as she captures the experience of light in her representations of flowers, landscapes and still life subjects. Colour is all important whether it be the pigment in her paintings or the thread she weaves with.

In Beasley this year we have two wonderful venues: Lisa Martin Pottery and painter Jennifer McAuley who are located just around the corner from one another.

Lisa Martin works from her home-based pottery studio, creating functional, wheel- thrown pottery for everyday use. She enjoys adding unique character to her handmade teapots, mugs, bowls, platters and other clay creations while keeping a high quality of comfort, function and craftsmanship. Jennifer McAuley is a contemporary fine art painter new to the Kootenays. Her style is a contemporary mix of realism and non-traditional oil painting with a focus on nature and landscapes.

Columbia Basin Culture Tour brochures are available at tourist information centres and participating venues. Visit the website at to view full artist/venue profiles and further details on each location’s activities, or register to receive a tour brochure in the mail.

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