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by Mike Usinger | The Georgia Straight

July 23, 2019

Vancouver Mural Festival Releases Full 10-Day Schedule For Its 2019 Community-Oriented Celebration of Public Art

The Vancouver Mural Festival has announced the full daily schedule of events for its 2019 edition, with highlights including everything from a 14-block street party to live painting battles to skate jams to an open-air movie theatre. American street-art star Shepard Fairey will even be hosting a DJ set and exhibition.

This year's celebration will take place from August 1 to 10, with opening night kicking off with a free curator-led talk at the VMF Gallery (14 West 7th Avenue, laneway entrance) at 6 p.m.

From there, the VMF­­—now in its fourth year­­—has programming designed to include Vancouverites from across the spectrum. 

August 2 brings the inaugural MEC X VMF Run the Murals. That's where art meets exercise, inviting the active-lifestyle-oriented to pull on their running shoes and then follow either a curated two-kilometre or five-kilometre route that will take them past some of the best public art in Mount Pleasant. Waiting at the finish line will be food and drink at the VMF Gallery.

A Night of Indigenous Femme Excellence on August 3 spotlights some of Vancouver's top Indigenous female visual artists, tattooists, and musicians at the VMF Gallery, from 6 p.m. to 1 a.m., with an August 4 Pride Special at the same locale bringing a 12-hour bash that starts with an outdoor patio party with drag performances and then shifts to a neighbouring warehouse space for 19-plus dancing. 

In the days that follow, look forward to: Super Snag at the American on Main Street on August 6, in which 10 artists participate in a mural battle with their work available for purchase; Time Travellers' Culture Jam at SFU Public Square on August 7, where hosts from the Vancouver Design Nerds will have "visitors from Vancouver future arts and culture scene travel back in time to share their stories"; and VMF Flash Tattoo on August 9 and 10 at 65 East 6th Avenue, where 27 tattooists will ink hundreds of folks who see their bodies as a canvas waiting to be decorated.

In other big news, illustrator and contemporary artist Fairey will see not only BAF Gallery open his OBEY 30th anniversary Vancouver exhibition, but also an OBEY Clothing pop-up at El Kartel and a DJ set at Fortune Sound Club the night before.

As always, the highlight of the VMF will be its sprawling Mount Pleasant Street Party, taking place August 10 around the epicenter of Main and Broadway. Included in the family-oriented celebration will be three live-music stages, food trucks, a Treasures and Travels Market, Public Disco party, four beer gardens featuring 25 breweries, and live interactive art. 

And if that isn't enough for 10 days, this year's VMF will culminate in the Park Show on August 10 at Jonathan Rogers Park. Headlining will be NYC breakout artist LP (most recently seen in these parts headlining the Orpheum in January), joined by performers badbadnotgood and iskwē, and Vancouver DJ icon MY!GAY!HUSBAND.

All of this will come together to fulfill the VMF mandate to showcase the diversity of Vancouver's art scene while creating accessible public art designed to stimulate talk about social and cultural issues that impact all who live here. 

See below for a full breakdown of this year's schedule. And for more information, go here.

Vancouver Mural Festival 2019 Calendar of Events

Event: VMF 2019 Gallery 

Date: Thursday, August 1 Gallery Opening Night + Curator Talks

(August 1-10: Gallery Exhibition continues throughout the festival’s 10 days; opening times vary; licensed) 

Time: 6pm - 10pm

Location: VMF Gallery - 14 West 7th Avenue (entrance in 7-½ Lane)

Cost: Free

Details: Vancouver Mural Festival celebrates its fourth year with an art exhibition featuring 90+ original works from VMF alumni and other powerful talents from the Lower Mainland. The collection of artists represent not only the legacy of VMF since its inception but also those who share the same artistic and cultural values. The spectrum of artists is, as always, culturally and stylistically diverse. VMF proudly celebrates diversification, giving those marginalized a platform, a canvas, a place to be seen. This ideology is at the centre of our ethos, and Year 4 will be an extension of this – a podium for equal representation and celebration of art. Each original piece of art will be 12”x12” and available for purchase.

Event: MEC x VMF Run The Murals and Afterparty 

Date: Friday, August 2 

Time: 7pm - 11pm 

Location: VMF Gallery - 14 West 7th Avenue (entrance in 7-½ Lane)

Cost: Free

Details: Art + Running + Party? MEC and VMF team up for a creatively-inspiring, sweat-inducing Friday night. Grab your running buddies, kids, and friends, and sign up for the inaugural MEC x VMF Run the Murals night! The curated runs feature 2km and 5km routes highlighting some of Mount Pleasant’s best public art… followed by an After Party with food and drinks at the VMF Gallery. This first run of the series is in collaboration with Fraser Street Run Club. Get set for what may be your most colourful (art-filled) run ever. Everyone is welcome. Space is limited. Registration opens July 15 at https://events.mec.ca

Partner website: https://www.mec.ca/en/

Event: Nach`i`m: A Night of Indigenous Femme Excellence

Date: Saturday, August 3

Time: 6pm - 1am

Location: VMF Gallery - 14 West 7th Avenue (entrance in 7-½ Lane)

Cost: By Donation

Details: Vancouver Mural Festival and Paisley Eva Nahanee (Dame) team up to curate an exciting evening of programming that shines a spotlight on Vancouver’s contemporary Indigenous female* artists across all sectors from visual arts to music to tattooing. This event uses an inclusive definition of femme* and includes all self identifying female, trans and nonbinary folks.

Event: Pride Special

Date: Sunday, August 4

Time: 2pm - 2am 

Location: 7-½ Lane

Cost: Free before 5pm, $10 from 5-8pm, $20 after 8pm

Details: 12-hour indoor/outdoor Pride party in Mount Pleasant by your friends at Public Disco, Bye Felicia & Club NA in partnership with Vancouver Mural Festival. The 12-hour event starts with an all-ages patio party in 7-1/2 Lane, including afternoon drag by Bye Felicia, then shifts inside for an evening of 19+ dancing in a neighbouring warehouse space by Club NA. 

Partner website: https://www.publicdisco.ca/

Event: THRIVE Talks

Date: Monday, August 5

Time: 7pm - 8:30pm 

Location: VMF Gallery - 14 West 7th Avenue (entrance in 7-½ Lane)

Cost: $5

Details: THRIVE Talks is a speaker series inviting female—including those who are cis, trans, gender non-binary, gender-fluid and femme-identified—artists to share their journeys, their work, and why they do what they do. In this VMF edition of THRIVE Talks, hear from some of the contemporary female artists who are involved in the Vancouver Mural Festival about why they do what they do and the stories behind their work. Speakers to be announced. Be inspired, share a laugh and enjoy a fun evening with other creative and curious souls. All genders and people are welcome to attend the event.

Partner website: https://www.thriveartstudio.com / Register at Eventbrite

Event: Super Snag x VMF 

Date: Tuesday, August 6

Time: 8pm - Midnight

Location: The American, 926 Main St

Cost: FREE 

Details: Snag celebrates Vancouver’s emerging art scene, placing 1,000+ artworks in homes since 2012. The 4th annual Snag x VMF event offers the public an opportunity to experience a live mural battle, plus 10 artists painting live with an opportunity to affordably own or win original art. This special edition Super Snag x VMF takes place in a new pop-up location at Brewhall. 

Partner website: https://www.facebook.com/snagalternativecontemporaryarts/

Event: SFU Public Square | Time Travellers’ Culture Jam 

Date: Wednesday, August 7

Time: 5:45pm - 8pm

Location: SFU Public Square - 248 E 11th Ave (Parking Lot, Main St. & 11th Ave) 

Cost: FREE

Details: In this special SFU Public Square x VMF event, visitors from Vancouver’s future arts and culture scene will travel back through time to share their stories. Together, with the help of the Vancouver Design Nerds, we will discuss, debate and creatively imagine the future of arts and culture in Vancouver, uninhibited by what is and empowered by what could be.

Event: OBEY Pop Up Launch Party + Shepard Fairey DJ Set 

Date: Wednesday, August 7

Time/Location: Pop Up Launch Party: 6pm-8pm at El Kartel - 104 E. Pender Street; 

Shepard Fairey DJ Set, 10:30pm at Fortune Sound Club - 147 E. Pender Street 

Cost: FREE 

Details: Shepard Fairey - American contemporary street artist, graphic designer, activist, illustrator and founder of OBEY Clothing - celebrates the 30th anniversary of OBEY with the launch of exclusive merchandise, available locally only at El Kartel. Following the pop-up, Shepard Fairey will be playing an extremely special DJ set at Fortune Sound Club with a performance by SO LOKI and additional DJ sets by DJ Marvel and Raiden Louie. 

Partners: https://elkartel.com | https://fortunesoundclub.com/shepard-fairey/

Event: BAF Exhibition Opening: Facing the Giant: 3 Decades of Dissent

Date: Thursday, August 8

Time: 7pm-11pm

Location: BAF Gallery, 258 East 1st Avenue

Cost: FREE 

Details: BAF presents the opening reception for Shepard Fairey's OBEY 30th anniversary Vancouver exhibition.

Partner website: http://burrardarts.org

Event: Paint in the Park with Opus

Date: Thursday, August 8

Time: 6pm - 9pm 

Location: Jonathan Rogers Park - 110 W. 7th Avenue

Cost: FREE 

Details: Spend an evening making art and plein air painting in the park with artists and creatives in Vancouver at this fun-for-all-ages outdoor painting challenge! Work in acrylics or oils, watercolour or pencil, collage or assemblage, or all of the above! Bring your own art supplies and we’ll supply a canvas panel for you to work on. All participants who exhibit their finished piece at this event will be entered to win 1 of 20 prizes!

Event Page link: https://www.facebook.com/events/329287154688755/

Partner: https://opusartsupplies.com/

Event: VMF Flash Tattoo  

Date: Friday, August 9 & 10th

Time: 12pm - 8pm 

Location: 65 E. 6th Avenue

Cost: Price Varies by Artist 

Details: 27 artists over 2 days = lightning speed permanent ink masterpieces on hundreds of people! 

This year’s 2 days tattoo artist line-up features: Sage Nowak, Savannah Scott, Chelsea Chernobyl, Cate Webb, April, Pifa, Serein, Daniel Giantomaso, Cole Bazin, Alison Woodward, Mandy Tsung, Vanessa, Isaac, Ariane, Sally, Russell Alton, Bubzee, James Lauder, Sylvie Le Sylvie, Liam, Michelle Cratt, Nikki Martin, Sydney, Glenn Thorn, Moody Rose, Layla, and Teagan Campbell. Curated by Zox Svetorovich.

Event: VMF Open Air Movie Theatre

Date: Friday, August 9

Time: 9pm / Sunset

Location: TBC

Cost: Free 

Details: Enjoy a free, evening movie in the park under the stars, featuring Academy-nominated film, Exit Through the Gift Shop, by notorious British street artist, Banksy. All-ages, licensed event.

Event: Vancouver Mural Festival Mount Pleasant Street Party 

Date: Saturday, August 10

Time: 12-7pm 

Location: 14+ blocks surrounding Main & Broadway

Cost: Free 

Details: Explore Mount Pleasant’s streets and alleyways for a full day of free, family-friendly activities celebrating public art, culture and community. Highlights include: 3 Live Music stages (presented by AIR MILES® Stage Pass), 4 (family-friendly) Beer Gardens with over 25 breweries, Treasures & Travels Market, Family Art Zone, Live and Interactive Art, Skate Jam, 4 Elements of Hip-Hop Jam, Holden Courage Memorial Graffiti Jam, Community Painting, lots of Food Trucks, Public Disco Dance Party and more.

Website: https://www.vanmuralfest.ca

Event: The Park Show

Date: Saturday, August 10

Time: Gates open at 4pm 

Location: Jonathan Rogers Park, 

Cost: Tickets $40; Free for kids 12 & under

Details: Celebrate the Vancouver Music Festival finale with an all-ages outdoor concert in the park featuring acclaimed New York singer-songwriter LP, with guests electronic instrumentalists badbadnotgood, award-winning Canadian Indigenous pop-electronic artist iskwē, plus local Vancouver legend MY!GAY!HUSBAND DJ’ing throughout the show.

Tickets: Ticketweb, Red Cat Records and Little Sisters Bookstore

 

This article was originally published by The Georgia Straight on July 12, 2019.

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