Viah Holbrook, 3, dances at Spirit Square during Saturday afternoon’s celebration Syrian culture. Photo by Mike Chouinard/Campbell River Mirror

Campbell River gallery provides taste of Syria for many senses

Afternoon event features music, dance, food and more from the Middle Eastern Country

Campbell River got a taste of Syria for many senses Saturday afternoon at Spirit Square.

In conjunction with the Campbell River Art Gallery’s (CRAG) current exhibition of contemporary art, organizers offered people some more of the Middle Eastern country, with offerings of food, music and dancing.

“As part of our exhibition, Behind the Lines – Contemporary Syrian Art, what we’ve tried to do over the course of time that we’ve had it one is to create a sense of appreciation for Syrian culture,” says Jenelle Pasiechnik, the curator of contemporary art at CRAG.

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This has included not only the exhibition itself, which was broken into two parts, the second of which recently opened. It has also resulted in events such as the Orontes Guitar Quartet concert last month and a night of films.

Saturday’s event featured music and dancers, along with food provided by BaBa Gannouj. People could even learn to write their name in Arabic.

The art exhibition itself was put together by Paul Crawford of the Penticton Art Gallery and Berlin-based Syrian artist Humam Alsalim. It has travelled to galleries throughout B.C., Alberta and the Yukon. There is also interest in moving the show to other parts of Canada and the U.S.


Nancy Belliveau (left) learns how to write her name in Arabic from Sarmad Almouallem during the event to celebrate Syria. Photo by Mike Chouinard/Campbell River Mirror