Free Virtual Spring Break Family Programs Hosted By Vancouver Art Gallery This March

From March 15 to March 19, families can experience, experiment, and unleash their imaginations during Spring Into Art, the virtual spring break family programs at the Vancouver Art Gallery.

Through FREE daily online art-making sessions, families can consider the many ways they can express their ideas, identities, and stories through the real, imagined, and dream-worthy themes of Underwater, Underground, Playspace, Outerspace, and Intergalactic.

Collaborating with local artists in the community is one of the most unique features of spending spring break with the Gallery. Each workshop will be led by Family Programs Coordinator Christina Jones and/or a local artist, who will share inspiring artworks and demonstrate imaginative activities!  All ages and abilities are welcome.


Spring Break Program Schedule


Amabie Postcard Project with Cindy Mochizuki | March 15, 1 pm
Learn more about the auspicious Amabie, a Japanese yōkai that was first documented in 1846 in the Higo prefacture (now known as Kumamoto), and create your own unique Amabie postcard to send to a friend or family member with a lucky message of care and good health. This yōkai is the subject of visual artist Cindy Mochizuki’s animated film Amabie, on view in the exhibition Stories that animate us.

In the traditional story of Amabie, a mermaid-like creature appeared as a glowing green light with three fish-like legs, scales and a beak. She was said to have passed the message to those who spotted her: “Good harvests will continue for six years, but, if disease spreads, show a picture of me to those who fall ill, and they will be cured.” This story was largely forgotten about until the 2020 pandemic when people took to social media creating their own illustrated versions of Amabie as part of the #amabiechallenge.


Virtual Studio Tour with Sonny Assu | March 16, 1 pm
Join us to find out more about the materials, stories and ideas that inspire interdisciplinary artist Sonny Assu as he takes us on a private tour of his art studio!  We’ll get behind-the-scenes access into Assu’s artistic practice and how his creations come to be.  Assu’s work on view in the exhibition Uncommon Language.


Playing with Sound and Movement | March 17, 1 pm
Join Family Programs Coordinator Christina Jones for a special screening of Allison Hrabluik’s film The Splits (2015), now on view in the exhibition Uncommon Language.  About the making of this artwork, Hrabluik explains: “I contacted as many people as I could find who I thought moved in interesting ways. I started with gymnasts, a hula hooper, and weightlifters—athletic ways of moving. To round this out, I considered other ways of performing, like opera and burlesque, amateur music, and how we move every day at work and with animals. I also incorporated elements of our lives that lean towards the grotesque—the salami makers and the hotdog eater. The absurd is linked to our every day as much as the transcendent, which is often what we look for in physical excellence… I was interested in the similarities between the different actions performed. The motion in the close-up scene of the hula-hooper is echoed in the close-ups of the gymnasts and weightlifter. By initially hiding the particular activity involved, I could focus on their shared qualities.”  Taking inspiration from the film The Splits, experiment with surprising combinations of actions and sound effects!


Space Comics with Cole Pauls | March 18, 1 pm
Award-winning writer, printmaker and illustrator Cole Pauls uses comic art as a way to celebrate his Tahltan culture. Inspired by settings in outer space, work with Pauls to create a zine that tells your story!


Transformation and IMagination: Animal Collages with Sandeep Johal | March 19, 1 pm
Sandeep Johal uses shapes and lines inspired by her South Asian heritage to tell stories. Tell your story by transforming shapes, patterns and coloured paper into your own imagined animal collage!


Registration for each workshop is available through the Vancouver Art Gallery’s Zoom channel. Register here. The Vancouver Art Gallery is also open for on-site visits all week to welcome families of all sizes. Book Tickets.

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