Art on the Rails is an outdoor art exhibition on display for the month of February at four locations along the Slocan Valley Rail Trail. A snow sculpture at Crescent Valley and a series of digital print signs representing a variety of artists are accessible to ski or walk to (200m) from four trailhead locations: Crescent Valley, Passmore, Winlaw and Slocan until March 21st, weather permitting.
The project is a collaboration between the Slocan Valley Community Arts Council and the Slocan Valley Heritage Trail Society, thanks to funding in part by the Slocan Valley Legacy Fund.
A large snow sculpture is now on display opposite Frog Peak Café at the Crescent Valley trailhead. The impressive carving is a pair of Trumpeter swans, masterful in size and striking against a dark row of thick evergreens overlooking the river. ‘Winter Guests’ is the title of the piece, created by the father and daughter team, Carl and Simone Schlichting.
Surrendering to the pandemic protocols, the arts council conceived the idea of hosting a ‘non-event’! “Our hope was to create something accessible for our community to enjoy, and safe for all to engage in during these times where we cannot gather for events” says Eden DuPont, President of the Slocan Valley Community Arts Council.
Artists responded to a call for entry earlier this year to submit digital images of their artwork for the exhibition. A selection of images has been curated into a vibrant compilation, representing a diverse collection of mediums and artistry. “We imagine participants x-country skiing along the trail, or could drive and park at designated locations to take a short walk to see the art” explains DuPont.
“We were thrilled with the response from artists,” said DuPont. “With very few parameters, it was remarkable how many submissions were noticeably inspired by place.” People flock to the valley rail trail during the winter months to recreate and enjoy the well maintained trails. The Slocan Valley Heritage Trail Society grooms and tracksets the 50 km long rail trail for x-country, maintains kiosks, benches and outhouses as well as plows trailhead parking lots.
“We’ve seen so many people out enjoying the trails and scenery this winter, and are really pleased that they’ll be able to enjoy the work of artists as well.” Shared Helene Dostaler, Chair of the Slocan Valley Heritage Trail Society “It’s the perfect setting for an art show!”
“When you are out enjoying your experience on the Slocan Valley Rail Trail and taking in the Art on the Rails outdoor exhibition, please consider making a donation to the Heritage Trail Society,” invites DuPont. Donations to the Slocan Valley Heritage Trail Society can be e-transferred to donate@slocanvalleyrailtrail.ca, or at the donations boxes located at each trailhead and help maintain the rail trail all year round.
“Come out for the swans, ski towards the art, and don’t miss out on the contests!” reminds DuPont, “You can take a selfie with one of the signs, tag #svartontherails (Instagram) and you’ll be entered to win one of the many draw prizes from participating artists.”
Visit www.slocanvalleyarts.ca to learn more about Carl & Simone’s snow sculpture and for detailed information about exhibition locations along the trail.
Slocan Valley Arts