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WHO x Create2030 COVID-19 Arts Festival – World Health Organization



Join us for a series of online events celebrating the art and artists who have taken the call to respond to the COVID-19 crises through the production of artwork that serves to educate, dispel myths and create a narrative of this interesting time
in our history.


From 26-31 July 2020, we are curating a series of webinar events that invite guest artists of different disciplines and artist allies to speak about the challenges and opportunities that are presented during COVID-19.

This will also serve as the launch of the Solidarity Shows Virtual Art Gallery.

Grab your beverage, your snack, and join us as we celebrate and support the amazing artists and creators who have been instrumental in helping us navigate the pandemic.

Speakers announced soon!

For questions, email


SUNDAY, 26 JULY 2020, 12pm Eastern Standard Time
Meet co-curators Christopher Bailey (Lead, Arts and Health of the World Health Organization) and Lisa Russell (Filmmaker and Founder
of Create2030) as they introduce the Solidarity Shows Virtual Art Gallery and the artists who have been contributing their work. Get a chance to hear from the artists themselves as well as explore the Virtual Art Gallery. Learn ways to support artists
and creatives during this challenging time.    

MONDAY, 27 JULY 2020, 12pm Eastern Standard Time
MENTAL HEALTH AND COVID-19 How can art be a source of healing for those experiencing anxiety, depression and other mental health issues as a result of COVID-19. Hear from
art therapists and healers on how creating art and participating in creative expression can help diminish harmful effects of COVID-19.

TUESDAY, 28 JULY 2020, 12pm Eastern Standard Time
YOUTH POETRY AND COVID-19 Young people around the world are using the powerful medium of poetry to help process the impact COVID-19 has on their health and well-being. Hear
from youth poets and youth champions about this artform. Special bonus: The premiere of the Get Lit Youth Poetry Playlist.

WEDNESDAY, 29 JULY 2020, 12pm Eastern Standard Time
HIP HOP AND COVID-19 Hip hop artists have been using music, graffitti, dance, DJing and other art forms to help their communities confront the dual pandemics of COVID-19
and racial injustice. Hear from artists from the US, East Africa and the Middle East about how the hip hop community has responded to reach communities.

THURSDAY, 30 JULY 2020, 12pm Eastern Standard Time
ART, POLICY AND COVID-19 The World Health Organization released a report “What is the evidence on the role of the arts in improving health and well-being? A scoping review (2019)”
that looks at the role of the arts in improving health and well-being, with a specific focus on the WHO European Region. Hear from UN policy experts and government officials on unique policies that promote art in the context of COVID-19.

FRIDAY, 31 JULY 2020, 12pm Eastern Standard Time
LOOKING FORWARD: PIVOTING ART IN THE TIME OF COVID-19 Artists, festivals, museums and other cultural institutions are pivoting art production and showcase to an online environment.
Hear from experts on what creates impactful experiences and lessons we can take from them in a post COVID-19 creative world.

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Art stolen from storage unit in Powell River – Powell River Peak



An art theft in Powell River has resulted in the loss of nearly one-third of the collected pieces for a fundraising event.

According to Malerie Meeker, one of the volunteer coordinators of Art in the Attic, the fundraising event, planned by Powell River Hospice and Powell River Sunshine Gogos (Stephen Lewis Foundation – grandmothers to grandmothers campaign), was put on hold because of COVID-19.

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“Because of the generosity of our community, we had close to 300 pieces of art; most of it stored in a Gogo’s basement,” said Meeker. “In early June we were offered free space in a storage facility and we jumped at the opportunity. Trucks and vehicles carefully transported everything and we breathed a sigh of relief as we filled two units and carefully locked up.

“Sadly, sometime between then and a week ago, one of our units was broken into, and about 85 pieces of art were stolen. Although the storage facility had an electronic card entry door, there were no security cameras. We were not targeted; two other units were also broken into.”

Meeker said organizers have given the RCMP a file of the photos of all the stolen pieces. She said every few days, organizers will post individual photos of the missing artworks in the hope that they will be able to reclaim some of them.

“For those permanently gone, these pictures will be a reminder of a generous donor and a lovely piece of art,” said Meeker.

To view these pictures, search Art from the Attic 2020 on Facebook.

“Although this is a blow for us, we are firmly committed to fundraising for the important work of Powell River Hospice and Sunshine Gogos: coming in spring 2021 – Art from the Attic,” said Meeker.

She said both organizations had put in hundreds of volunteer hours collecting and cataloging each piece of art. She said every time a piece was received, the artist would be researched. Pieces were being posted on the Facebook page to create interest.

Because of COVID-19, the sale has been in a holding pattern. She said organizers had hoped to do a modified sale. Instead of a big gala event, they were looking at displaying pieces in display windows around town and taking silent bids over a series of several weekends. She said they may still go ahead with that plan.

Funds were going to be split between the hospice society and the Gogos. The hospice funds would remain in the community and some of the funds would go to supporting grandmothers in Africa.

“Hospice is struggling right now with their funding; it’s such an important service in our community and all of the Gogos could get on board with supporting hospice,” said Meeker.

She said the last time she spoke to the RCMP, there were no suspects or leads in the theft.

The fear is that the art has been loaded into a cube van and taken to the Lower Mainland to be sold in markets there.

Meeker said local artists have been very generous in providing works for the sale.

“It was the hardest having to tell our donors that their generosity was not going to be used in the way that anyone intended,” said Meeker.

If people want to donate to the cause, they still can. Arrangements can be made by going to

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A side order of art to go with that – ObserverXtra



Tired of cooking or relying on fast-food delivery? Local restaurateurs are welcoming people back, offering up a side order of art as an enticement.

On patios across the region, colourful picnic tables painted by local artists await visitors to a range of establishments.

Art Fresco is a public art collaboration between local artists and restaurants that supports both groups at the same time. Created by the tourism organization Explore Waterloo Region, the project has placed some 50 unique tables at various locations.

“The Art Fresco project came about as a way to try to support two industries that were particularly hard hit with the pandemic, the hospitality industry and the art industry, in this case visual arts,” explains the  group’s Diane Murenbeeld of the idea behind the art-meets-food-meets-socialization project.

Murenbeeld went on to explain the process of selection for the visual artists. Denis Longchamps from the Canadian Clay and Glass Gallery, Shirley Madill from Kitchener-Waterloo Art Gallery, and Susan Coolen, a local visual artist, were the three members of the selection committee.

“The three served as the selection committee to review concepts that were selected from Waterloo Region and beyond,” said Murenbeeld.

Where to place the finished tables involved yet more factors. “One was geography, to try and spread them fairly across Waterloo Region. There was a high demand in certain areas, but we wanted to ensure that we had representation in our rural municipalities as well as our cities.”

Rural locations such as Woolwich and Wellesley townships were not forgotten. Local sites and photos of the art at the locations can be found at the Explore Waterloo Region website. In Woolwich Township, there are six tables, located at Jacob’s Grill, Kitchen Kuttings, EcoCafe, Sip ‘N Bite, The Village Biergarten and The Village Colonnade. Wellesley Township is home to three pieces, one each at Grammy’s Espresso Bar, The 86’, and The Olde Heidelberg Restaurant.

Beyond the locales, the project has other ties to the townships: wood was sourced from St. Clements, and Home Hardware and Beauti-Tone provided additional supplies. The tables were brought to Lot 42 in Kitchener, where artists were invited to submit designs and come onsite to paint the picnic tables.

Organizers then attempted to connect themes in the artwork to locations. For example, one bench was inspired by the Cambridge Butterfly Conservatory, so it was placed at the Chrysalis Café. The bench was painted by Anne Williamson, who described her concept on the picnic table’s profile on the campaign’s website. “In these trying times we’ve had to slow down, value what is near and dear to us, and feel fortunate for this wonderful world. I’ve been noticing the butterflies in the garden, and they, the Cambridge Butterfly Conservatory, provided inspiration for my design.”

The last factor for consideration was a desire for tables from community members. “We just wanted to learn of any places looking for a table,” explained Murenbeeld.

Explore Waterloo Region encourages people to visit patios and participate in their #ArtFrescoDining campaign by taking selfies at the tables.

“The reason we went with tables as a public art project was also in keeping the pandemic in mind. It was naturally a social bubble friendly piece of furniture that might entice people who are a bit nervous about going out that they can safely dine together with their bubble and still be outdoors,” she said.

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Rally planned at Halifax's art and design school in support of former president –



A rally is set to be held in today by members of Halifax’s art and design school to call for the removal of  its board of governors. 

Students, faculty, staff, and alumni of NSCAD will gather to demand the reinstatement of former university president Dr. Aoife MacNamara.

In a controversial move in late June, the board removed MacNamara from the post after only one year on the job. 

Friends of NSCAD are also calling for an increase in representation of black, indigenous, and people of colour on the board of governors to at least one third of members as well as tuition waivers for black canadian and indigenous students.

Rally participants are asked to wear face masks and practice social distancing.

The event is scheduled to take place over the noon hour on campus.

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