Honing in on all aspects and varieties of life in the Bella Coola Valley is the vision for an upcoming mural project to be situated on the Lobelco Exhibition Building at the Bella Coola Fall Fair Grounds.
A call for submissions has been issued by the Bella Coola Music Festival, who has partnered with the Bella Coola Arts Council and the Lobelco Community Club for the project.
“We are looking for multiple artists to collaborate on this mural,” said Corissa McNeilly, a director with the Bella Coola Music Festival.
The call for submissions shows examples of what a template might look like for the project, showcasing the blank canvas of a semi-circle sectioned off into various parts.
McNeilly said the look of the mural will depend on the style and number of submissions they receive.
“Each artist will be assigned a ‘plot’ ranging from 100 to 250 square feet,” she said. “It would be wonderful to represent a variety of local backgrounds, ancient ties to the land where the building sits, history, cultural roots and stories. We’re hoping to get up to five different artists and then a decision will be based on what kind of message the art brings, aspects of the valley, things like that, and we definitely want to highlight as much representation in the community as possible.”
The original, current piece painted on the Lobelco Exhibition Building was completed 12 years ago by renowned artist Mitchell Soulfeather of Salt Spring Island.
While depicting beautiful scenery from the Bella Coola Valley and incorporating aspects of the region’s history and culture, unfortunately, McNeilly said proper research wasn’t done on the correct materials to use for the piece.
“The correct primer wasn’t used on the metal so it started peeling within the year,” she said. “Every year more and more of it is just chipping off and you can hardly see the mural anymore.”
Painting of the mural is expected to begin later this summer, pending submissions, she said, so artists have time to order paints and supplies.
Submissions can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org or to ‘Corissa Lee’ on messenger.
Anyone with questions about the project plans such as timing, pricing, materials and equipment, or if your organization has any resources to contribute to the project, can contact McNeilly, as well.