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False Creek

City-funded Blue Cabin Floating Artist Residency celebrates Coast Salish weaving practices with launch on August 25

The Public Art Boost grant was created to leverage community partners to enable significant new public art projects, attract diverse audiences from across the city and from other municipalities, and facilitate innovative projects unique to Vancouver.

Branislav Henselmann, Managing Director of Cultural Services

August 15 2019 –

Built in 1927 as a floating house in Coal Harbour, and then perched on the shore of North Vancouver for the past 80 years, the Blue Cabin will dock at the Plaza of Nations beside the Aquabus stop in False Creek this summer, beginning a new life as home to a floating artist residency program.

Home and studio for artists Al Neil and Carole Itter from the mid-sixties until 2015, the Blue Cabin has now been saved, restored, and relaunched through a collaboration between the grunt gallery, Other Sights for Artists’ Projects, and Creative Cultural Collaborations, with significant support from the City of Vancouver.

Skeins: Weaving on the Foreshore

For its first year, the Blue Cabin will host Skeins: Weaving on the Foreshore, with artists-in-residence from Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh, as well as Gunditjmara (Australia).

The Blue Cabin repairs and renovations were supported by a $115,000 Cultural Infrastructure Grant (488 KB) to construct the platform and small house.

The City also provided $30,000 through a 2019 Public Art Boost Grant (150 KB) from the Innovation Fund to support the first year of programming.

“The Public Art Boost grant was created to leverage community partners to enable significant new public art projects, attract diverse audiences from across the city and from other municipalities, and facilitate innovative projects unique to Vancouver,” said Branislav Henselmann, Managing Director of Cultural Services for the City of Vancouver. “The distinct rich heritage and magical natural setting of the Blue Cabin Floating Residency will give professional local and international artists from different backgrounds and experiences the time, space, and support to make a diverse portfolio of unforgettable artworks.”

Tour the facility

The August 25 public launch will be hosted by Eric Fredericksen, Head of Public Art at the City of Vancouver.

Attendees can learn more about the Blue Cabin Floating Artist Residency’s first season of programming, and can tour the facility (including the interiors of the Blue Cabin studio and the newly constructed sustainable deckhouse), every 15 minutes from 11:30am to 5:30pm.

Participants will be limited to 20 people per tour and will be first-come, first served.

“The Blue Cabin is a project that began with a heritage concern - to preserve this incredible structure - and grew to a vision with a much broader cultural mandate: to expand, however we can, the way we see the city, and the complex histories that inform it,” said Vanessa Kwan, Program Director, grunt gallery. 

Artists-in-residence

The yearlong inaugural program Skeins: Weaving on the Foreshore will examine Coast Salish weaving practices and feature the following artists-in-residence:

  • Vicki Couzens (September 15 – October 31, 2019)
  • Angela George (November 15, 2019 – January, 15, 2020)
  • Skwetsimeltxw Willard “Buddy” Joseph and Chepximiya Siyam Chief Janice George (February 15 – March 31, 2020)
  • Debra Sparrow (April 15 – May 31, 2020)