Canterbury art expo enters the virtual world

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Alma Crosswell, right, with Di Gillanders and Valerie McClatchy, all of Rangiora, observe Ryan...
Alma Crosswell, right, with Di Gillanders and Valerie McClatchy, all of Rangiora, observe Ryan Oliver's oil painting Angelina during last year's Kaiapoi Art Expo, which was held in the Riverview Lounge at the Kaiapoi Club. Photo: Shelley Topp
A virtual Kaiapoi Art Expo has been established to replace the annual event which was cancelled because of the coronavirus outbreak.

The virtual exhibition was created by Martyn Cook, business manager of the Kaiapoi Promotion Association.

Cook’s idea for the virtual exhibition came about during a collaboration with Waimakariri Arts Trust deputy chairwoman Jackie Watson.

Visitors will be able to browse and purchase the artworks. Users will also be able to vote for their favourite art work in the popular Public Choice Award. Jackie says she hopes people will support the virtual expo idea and help the artists involved.

“The thousands that turn up to the Kaiapoi Art Expo every year spend over $30,000 buying local art, so the cancellation of the 2020 Expo will have obviously impacted on many artists’ incomes, as will the many other art events and outlets, such as galleries, that have been cancelled or closed during this lockdown,

This year’s expo was to have been held on July 11 and 12.

“Kaiapoi will certainly be a lot quieter in July with the loss of not only the expo but also Blackwells’ Fire and Ice Festival, which is held at the same time,” she says.

However, All Together Kaiapoi’s lantern festival, Lighting Up Kaiapoi, which is also traditionally held at this time of year, will still go ahead as it is not compromised by any Covid-19 restrictions.

The dates for next year’s Kaiapoi Expo are July 17 and 18.

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