Category: Visual Arts

art exhibits, visual artists, art workshops

Esmé’s Credo Comic

Hi everyone!

As part of the Coming of Age program at UCV, our bridging youth have crafted credos to share with the congregation. Their credo is a statement about their beliefs about the world right now.

Esmé decided to share her credo in the form of a comic. She’ll talk about it in the service tomorrow, and we’re posting it here for you to peruse in full. There’s a link at the bottom of this post that will allow you to download the pdf if you wish.

This is my credo comic that I was talking about at Sunday’s service! I’m really, really excited for you to read it!

The 1st Principle inspired it, but now I see all of the principles all over it.
Enjoy! And hug a snail!

— Esmé



Esmé credo final

Preview: Art for Refugees on Twitter

Art for Refugees is a silent auction of artwork by Karen Brumelle with all proceeds to the refugee committee. The art is on display in the Fireside room from December 1 to 22.

Preview: Art for Refugees (@UnitarianUCV) – click on that link to see tweets with images of art for sale in the silent auction. (You do not need a Twitter account for this.) Twitter may crop images, so always click on an image displayed with a tweet to be sure you see all of it.

The image featured in this post is displayed with this tweet.

An image of another painting in the silent auction is displayed with this tweet.

And you can scroll through all such tweets to preview some of the art on sale in Fireside.

Come view the actual artwork and write your first bids when the exhibit opens on December 1.

You can review bids and bid or rebid on any day. Bidding closes at 12:15 pm on December 22.

Support the wonderful work of the refugee committee – get some art for yourself or as a gift.


notes and links

featured image from silent auction

artist’s website:

in these notes, DuckDuckGo bang commands (!?) link to search results for words they follow when the commands are in parentheses, for words they precede when they are not:

!ucv refugee committee / a search on the UCV website

!tw “Art for Refugees” (@UnitarianUCV) / a search on Twitter

the Merriam-Webster definition of a silent auction (!mw) notwithstanding, the written bids in Art for Refugees are not sealed but displayed with the art

A silent auction: Art for Refugees

Art for Refugees is a silent auction of artwork by Karen Brumelle with all proceeds to the refugee committee. The art is on display in the Fireside room from December 1 to 22.

Come view the artwork and write your first bids when the exhibit opens on December 1.

You can review bids and bid or rebid on any day. Bidding closes at 12:15 pm on December 22.

Support the wonderful work of the refugee committee – get some art for yourself or as a gift.

Preview: Art for Refugees (@UnitarianUCV) – click on that link to see tweets with images of art for sale in the silent auction. (You do not need a Twitter account for this.)


notes and links

featured image from silent auction

artist’s website:

in these notes, DuckDuckGo bang commands (!?) link to search results for words they follow when the commands are in parentheses, for words they precede when they are not:

!ucv refugee committee / a search on the UCV website

!tw “Art for Refugees” (@UnitarianUCV) / a search on Twitter

the Merriam-Webster definition of a silent auction (!mw) notwithstanding, the written bids in Art for Refugees are not sealed but displayed with the art

UCV Art Exhibition & Book Launch at the Beaty Museum

by Catherine Stewart

( 50% sales to UCV Refugee Fund )

For the months of March and April, I am pleased to be exhibiting two suites of inkjet prints inspired by the bird collection at UBC.  Courtship Colour Studies, on display in the Fireside Room, are abstracted compositions based on the combined colours of male and female songbird specimens.

The Venus Takes Flight prints, hanging in the Sanctuary, were made by layering scans of bird plumage with those of beautiful textiles and working with them in PhotoShop to create ‘hybrid’ compositions. Information about the ideas behind this work can be found in the artist’s statement in the southwest corner of the Sanctuary. Half of all sales from this exhibition will be donated to the UCV Refugee Fund. (The other half will help to offset framing expenses for the exhibition.) Respective prices for framed prints are $525 and $725 respectively. If interested, please speak to me or email me at [email protected] .

I am also currently exhibiting at the Beaty Biodiversity Museum at UBC. The Skin & Bones exhibition explores our complicated relationship with the animal world through photography, natural science and the applied art of fashion design. More information about the exhibition can be found at:


Everyone is welcome to join me the evening of April 18 to celebrate the release of my two photo books, ‘Skin & Bones’ and ‘Invoking Venus: Feathers and Fashion’, both based on my Beaty Museum exhibitions. At the launch, I will be speaking at 7 pm about utilizing the museum’s collections in my artistic work. Visitors will be able to explore my latest exhibition and the collections that inspired it. Admission is free or by donation to the museum.

Catherine is a member of the Buildings and Grounds Committee, helps out with Arts Committee, is on the Sunday Coffee Service Team, and is currently learning about the work of the UCV Refugee Committee. More about the artist and her work can be found at:

Volunteer Reporters for Refugee Committee and Visual Arts


The communications committee is looking for “reporters” (one or two) to write up news, collect/take photos and post on the website updates for the Refugee Committee and the Visual Arts committee.
This would involve talking with committee news, writing up an article, sending to the committee for any additions or corrections, asking for photos, taking some (with permission of course) or finding images online to illustrate the content. For the arts committee, the article could be in the style of a review and ideally interviewing and photographing that month’s artist. (You do not need to attend meetings but of course you could.) Most if not all of this work could be done from home with a phone and computer. You would need to take the Feb. 23 workshop on how to post an article to the website. Apply to

The Art of Instagram

Vancouver Unitarians are now active on instagram. Tanya approached our minister about getting instagram going and within a week we had an “Instagram” meeting. Tanya has offered to be the lead person/coordinator for up to six months during which time she’d mentor our youth to take it over


Some Insta-Information by Tanya Sullivan, our instagram poster and coordinator

If you’re on Instagram, follow us by searching for “vancouverunitarian”. Hope to see you online. When you post something of interest to Unitarians, add the hashtag #vancouverunitarian and #ucv

What is Instagram?

Instagram is a free, online photo-sharing application and social network platform that was acquired by Facebook in 2012. Instagram allows users to edit and upload photos and short videos through a mobile app.

Suggestions in graphic above and in text below.

Instagram is Centred on Storytelling

  • Everyone loves stories.
  • Instagram gives us a platform to tell our story.
  • It’s personal, easily accessible and visual format makes UVC’s stories more accessible.

Tip: In addition to posting photos of what’s going on, use “real time Insta-stories” to share UCV’s personality and wide range of happenings!

The Reach of Instagram is Large

  • Instagram offers a huge potential audience to UCV.
  • Vancouver is home to approx 630, 000 residents.
  • The Greater Vancouver Population is approx 2,400,000.
  • Instagram engages with 700 million monthly users!

Tip: Use #hashtags to increase engagement, attract other like minded individuals to our congregation and to let the world know what we’re up to!

Visual Content is Super Engaging

  • Photos are one of the most-engaging content on the Web.
  • 90% of information transmitted to the brain is visual.
  • Our brain processes visuals 60,000X faster than text.
  • What is posted on Instagram keeps people coming back to see what we’re up to!

Tip: Keep the photos bright, consistent and clear.

The follower should be able to devise their own story just from the photo!

It’s a Goldmine of Insights, Ideas, Opportunity and Feedback

  • Instagram allows UCV to reach out to other congregations, organizations, businesses, charities, influential people, groups, philanthropic agencies, activists and curious youth!
  • The more engagement we receive – the more ideas we’ll gather to create an accessible offerings to all UCV guests and existing members.

Tip: Follow other UU congregations, Inspiring members of our community and Organizations that you believe would take an intents in what we do. When you share the @vancouverunitarian posts – they’ll notice!

It’s Fun & Vibrant (Like Us!) 

  • Help us build our community by following @vancouverunitarian
  • There’s a lot going on around here – let’s share it!
  • Tag @vancouverunitarian in your posts, Insta-stories for us to create more easily accessible content.
  • Include #vancouverunitarians #ucv in your posts about the church and happenings when you post to Instagram.

Tip: Have fun! Post often! Comment and like @vancouverunitarian posts and share our content!

We’re a Welcoming Home for Many Artists, Musicians and Creatives

For many years, UCV has been a welcoming home and refuge to a wide variety of artists, musicians, and creatives of all disciplines and backgrounds.

Our beautiful Sanctuary, with its wonderful architecture, ambiance, and acoustics, has become a favoured venue for local concerts, piano recitals, music festivals and plays. It has been the home of the Vancouver Kiwanis Music Festival for many years, and regularly hosts the Vivaldi Chamber Choir, Jubilate Vocal Ensemble, Vancouver Chinese Choir, West Coast Chamber Music, Highs and Lows Choir, and of course our own Chalice Choir. The Chor Leoni Men’s Choir and Elektra Women’s Choir even have their office spaces on the UCV campus!

Other regular rental clients of ours include the Pacific International Youth Music Society and the BC Registered Music Teachers’ Association, among many others.

Elaine Joe at our grand piano playing for the Highs and Lows choir who practise every week in our sanctuary.

Each month, our Arts Committee curates a new exhibition in our Sanctuary and Fireside Room, giving local artists the opportunity to have their work seen by hundreds if not thousands of congregants and visitors.

The Vancouver Modern Quilt Guild meets in the Hewett Hall monthly, and provides its members an opportunity to have a ‘show and tell’ of their latest creations.

Another UCV tenant, the Multifaith Action Society, produces a Multifaith Calendar each year that features beautiful community-sourced artwork from around the world as a means of promoting interfaith harmony and cross-cultural dialogue. Over 30,000 copies of the calendar are distributed across North America and beyond annually.

We have hosted book launches and readings from a number of renowned authors, and the UCV campus’ many unique and storied spaces have also been featured in a wide variety of television shows, movies, and amateur films. Most recently, the Hewett Hall and Fireside Room were transformed into courtroom sets for the Johnny Depp film Richard Says Goodbye.

Marcus Hynes is the person to contact about booking space at the Unitarian Centre.

We are proud of UCV’s commitment to and embodiment of the arts and look forward to many more years of serving Vancouver’s creative community!

To inquire about booking a space for your creative event, please contact Marcus at 604-261-7204, extension 0, or by email.

Tsunami-Damaged Kimono Fabric – Reimagined

Peace Building Event

Love, Hope and New Life

Remembering March 11, 2011

Seven Years after the Eastern Japan Great Earthquake /Tsunami

3 Related events: March 7-9

Click here for personal stories from Tama Copithorne and Judy Villett

Wednesday March 7th, 7:30pm  

Talks and Music

Eriko Shiomi, Music & Art Producer, Japan

Keiichi Hashizume, Music Educator & Clarinetist, Japan

Julia Lin, Author – ”The extraordinary bonds between Taiwan and Japan”

Dr. David Edgington, Professor Emeritus, UBC – “Building back in devastated communities”

Dr. Eiichiro Ochiai, Professor Emeritus, Juniata College, Penn. – “Health problems related to the Fukushima nuclear power plant accident”

Thursday March 8th, 10:00am-4:00pm

Textile Art Workshop

Eriko Shiomi & Judy Villett, Textile artist

Friday March 9th, 7:30pm

Music for Peace and Textile Art Display

Japan: Keiichi Hashizume, Clarinetist

Vancouver: Keiko Alexander, Pianist I Bo Peng,, Cellist I Winds Choir & Egret Choir


Sponsored by:

Artistic Studio LaLaLa, Tokyo

Egret Music Centre, Vancouver

Vancouver Program Committee:

Judv Villett <[email protected]> 604-521-1191

Tama Cooithorne <[email protected]> 604-224-2646

Antonia Chu <[email protected]> 778-322-5566

Cecilia Chueh <[email protected]> 604-889-1114

Registration Recommended: 604-436-5995

***Participation by Donation***


Remember – Learn – Participate

Celebrate the incredible resiliency of the Japanese people and the way the world has helped,

especially their close neighbor Taiwan,  and friends in Canada.

Everyone is invited to participate in the 5OX5O cm Textile Art Workshop at Hewett Centre,  UCV on March 8th from 10:00 am-4:00 pm

Erika Shiomi will talk about the rescue of kimonos and fabrics from a historic shop, KAMESHICHI in lshinomaki, Miyagi Prefecture, north of Fukushima, flooded by the tsunami. She will describe the cleaning and recycling process, bringing garments to show and sell made from the precious fabric. Thousands of 5OcmX5Ocm squares have already been made in Japan and around the world to be displayed during music performances organized by renowned clarinetist Keiichi Hashizume from Japan.

Participants are encouraged to think about their memories of the tsunami disaster and make a personal image using a scrap of the kimono fabric that Erika will bring from Japan. Add your own fabrics or use some that will be supplied. Embellishments and special threads may be incorporated. Stitch by hand or machine or don’t stitch at all! Images may be applied using iron-on fusible web – no sewing. No experience required!

Sharing materials and skills is encouraged. Several irons and sewing machines will be available, or you may bring your own machine with extension cord.

The finished 5O cm X 5O cm pieces will be donated by participants, either left at the end of the workshop or brought early the evening of the closing concert. All of the pieces will be safety-pinned together to provide a heartfelt back-drop for the talks and musical performance that are part of this memorial event.

Your work will then return to Japan to be part of the ever-growing collection from all over the world to be displayed in the new Culture Centre that is currently under consideration in lshinomaki.

A light Japanese and Taiwanese lunch will be provided during the workshop. Participants are encouraged to bring family and friends to attend the opening talks on

Wednesday evening and a very special finale concert on Friday evening to see your work and more than one hundred 5OX5O textiles brought from Japan.

For more information and to register for the 5OX5O Textile Art Workshop

please contact Judy Villett: [email protected] 604-521-1191


Summary of the 3 Events

This series of events will be well worth attending! I’ve been fascinated following the background of these music, art and peace-building events. (from Mary Bennett, UCV Arts Committee).

Wed, Mar 7, 2018 at 7:30 pm – 9:00 pm – Peace Building Textile Art and Music Event – Remembering March 11, 2011 – Main Hall…/peace-building-textile-art/

Thu, Mar 8, 2018 at 10:00 am – 4:00 pm – 50 x 50 Textile Art Workshop – Main Hall

Fri, Mar 9, 2018 at 7:30 pm – 9:00 pm – Music for Peace and Textile Art Display – Sanctuary…/music-concert-textile-art/

All events at the Unitarian Centre

Click below for 2-page description of the three events

Do feel free to print out and share with friends.

Page 1 – word doc – Description of 3 events   Page 1 – pdf – Description of 3 events

Page 2 – word doc – workshop description   Page 2 – pdf – workshop description


March 7-9th Arts Event – How It All Began – by Tama and Judy

Canada-Taiwan-Japan Connections

By Tama Copithorne

Love, Hope and New Life is a three-day arts and music event at the Unitarian Church marking the 7th anniversary of a great natural catastrophe and human tragedy of March 11, 2011 in Eastern Honshu in Japan (The Fukushima area).

Offering these events all started with the exhibition of our Vancouver based artist, Judy Villett’s exhibition, “Colours of Canada” in late December, 2017. I rushed to see Judy’s textile art exhibition in late December last year, a few days before the exhibition was to be closed. A fine example of Canadian social art!

I called my good Taiwanese Canadian friends who are interested in music and art to see if they would like to go with me to see Judy’s exhibition. They knew nothing about it but they were delighted to join me at the exhibition at Place des Arts in Coquitlam. We all went together to see the exhibition the next day.

At the exhibition, my Taiwanese Canadian friends told me just by chance that their friends in Artistic Studio LaLaLa (Tokyo), a Japanese social art organization approached them to help introduce their work in Canada, Vancouver in this case. The LaLaLa has already visited many countries in the world to promote peace following the tsunami and the nuclear disaster in 2011. Having been often involved in international cultural projects, I immediately suggested that we should all help bring this important art and music public event to Vancouver, to which my good Taiwanese Canadian friends and Judy said “Yes, let’s!” The timing presented us a challenge, as the LaLaLa with its principle individuals, music and art producer, Eriko Shiomi, and a well known clarinetist and music educator, Keiichi Hashizume, were already planning to come to Vancouver this March. We felt this is a significant starting relationship with them for Vancouver, so we started working on its presentation in our city on March 7, 8, and 9.

Personally speaking, I feel privileged to have good Taiwanese friends in our community who are interested in Japan. Japan and Taiwan has most of the time had a mutually helping and enriching history unlike Japan’s negative history with other Asian countries. Taiwan quickly came to assist Japan’s recovery from the great earthquake/tsunami catastrophe of 7 years ago. Taiwan raised over twenty billion Yen (nearly $250 million) for Japan’s recovery that time. Japan has also come to rescue Taiwan quickly whenever disasters hit the country. There is a mutual appreciation of each other.

Connections with Japan

By Judy Villett

The terrible earthquake and resulting tsunami in Japan in 2011 felt close to me in several ways. I have visited Japan and have great respect for the visual arts and crafts there, forming friendships with textile artists there. As well, a close family friend was teaching school in a town near Fukushima in 2011. He survived, moving inland with his fiancé’s family. He kept us informed during and after the tsunami. Finally, one of my sons lived and worked in Japan for several years. We followed the whole event with horror and helplessness from Canada, and are still very concerned with the nuclear plant and the fact that radiation from it has caused Japanese friends to leave Tokyo and avoid the whole area. There are unknown consequences still affecting the ocean.

I was elated with the opportunity that arose via Tama Copithorne, a friend from the UCV Book Group, and her friend, Cecilia Cheuh. Through their musical/choir connections, we are able to help present a workshop using some of the rescued kimono fabrics…..a chance for me to take part, even this long after the event.

Helping Eriko Shiomi from Tokyo with her workshop gives me a chance to handle the precious relics and help create something meaningful and symbolic with them. There will be a direct connection as the work goes back to Japan.

I look forward to learning more about the catastrophe and Erico’s use of larger pieces of fabric to make original garments to sell as a fundraiser to replace musical instruments for children.

I will donate my time and some of my own fabrics as well as iron-on/fusible webbing for those people who don’t sew to help them make simple fabric collages.

I am looking forward to the speakers and world-class music. I have already learned about the strong connection between Taiwan and Japan from Tama and Cecilia, and feel privileged to be part of the world community supporting the survivors.

Judy Villett

Click here for details about the three day public event on March 7, 8 ,9.


Ice-Age Cave Symbols in Poetry and Art

On Sunday, January 28, Mary Bennett and Keith Wilkinson will do an artists’ talk at 12:30 in the Fireside Room about the 32 geometric signs found in ice-age caves in Europe and how learning about this inspired their visual art (Mary) and poetry (Keith.)


The session will start promptly at 12:30 showing the TED Talk by Genevieve von Petzinger of the University of Victoria.


Each of them will talk about their own creative process, both the long term of how they began to create art and identify as artists as well as more recently how this particular project evolved.

Recently they published their chapbook with two poems (haiku) and one mixed-media painting selected for each of the 32 geometric signs. This is the second booklet they’ve produced, the first being “Incubating Poetry” combining Mary’s paintings inspired by birds’ nests and Keith’s poetry.

Books will be available for sale at $10 each at the talk for those who wish to purchase.

Link to details of event

Mary’s Artist website

From the back page of their chapbook:

Artist Statements


Mary Bennett – Paintings

One Saturday morning while still in bed, I heard Genevieve von Petzinger being interviewed on CBC’s North by Northwest. I was “between series”, although my recent mixed-media pieces I had named “sign posts” because most included some kind of text or numeric symbol. I was playing with the phrase “it may be a sign”. So I sat up in bed and thought: Now that may indeed be a sign!

So I just slightly shifted my artwork focus to these specific 32 geometric signs. I’m not a graphic artist, and more than one person had already made graphic representations of the signs. Nor am I a photographer, and Genevieve’s husband has done some photographs of the signs. So I searched for how I responded. After reading her book, and watching her TED talk more than once, my focus was on trying to capture the feeling of entering a cave and seeing these evocative and stirring marks for the first time.

Keith Wilkinson – Poems

Haiku immediately felt to me like the best verbal response to these ice-age signs. When combined with images, haiku becomes the related form haibun, so this would become a book of haibun, joining images and words to express thought, feeling, and wonder; immediate, past, and ultimate; the natural world and intimations of worlds unknown.

I wrote my haiku first in response to the graphic rendering of the cave signs in von Petzinger’s publications. After that, I looked at the images Mary had produced in response to the same signs and reoriented the haiku toward those. I let these rest for awhile again and in a final series of edits disconnected the haiku from their ancient and modern “sister works” and let them move independently without direct reference to their origins or influences. So if the haiku seem to wander off base, this is why. It was a kind of triple-distillation process: response, adjustment, release—all circling around unexplained mysteries. And that is the spirit I tried to be open to—touching what couldn’t be said.