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Chit-chat and lots of energy mark PechaKucha nights
It all started in Tokyo 10 years ago when two young architects thought it would be fun to get people together in a casual, informal way to show images — fast — and talk about them — just as fast.
Now PechaKucha 20x20 Nights are happening worldwide, and Richmond has officially joined the global network of more than 600 cities.
PechaKucha simply means “chit-chat”. The 20x20 refers to the 20 images shown as slides, then each presenter has 20 seconds to talk about each slide. Since PechaKucha nights are “bottom up”, topics can be anything from your six-year-old daughter’s artwork, which, of course, she can present herself, to your love of motorcycles.
PechaKucha nights are part of the City of Richmond’s public art program, one of the most robust ones in Metro Vancouver. This year alone, 34 new projects worth more than $3.2 million are underway. Funding is largely through private contributions as well as the city’s Public Art Program. Since 1997, half of one percent of all private development construction costs in Richmond has gone into the Public Art Program, which supports events like PechaKucha.
Richmond’s next PechaKucha Night, the third in the series, will be held in conjunction with Culture Days on Saturday, Sept. 28, 6–9 p.m. at the Richmond Art Gallery. The topic, New Worlds, takes its cue from the current exhibition, Fictive Realties.
“There’s a whole variety of interesting speakers that we bring together so it will be a mash-up. It’s always an unexpected delight,” said Eric Fiss, Richmond’s public art planner. Presenters range from visual artists and illustrators to people like Wynne Palmer from the Vancouver Theremin Orchestra and Little Woo, a “magical mentor and muse”.
As part of the official PechaKucha network, Richmond is committed to holding four events a year. Locations vary, as do topics. All events are free. Upcoming PechaKucha Nights are planned for Kwantlen Polytechnic University and the Britannia Shipyards National Historic Site. For details visit www.pechakucha.org/cities/richmond-bc.