ELORA – The Elora Sculpture Project will celebrate its 11th edition this year with an exhibition that showcases works from a variety of artists from across the country.
Interim chairman and treasurer David Cross said the project often receives submissions from outside the province, but this year it will feature three sculptures not originating from Ontario.
“We’ve gone coast to coast,” Cross explained.
“We have one artist in Burnaby, British Columbia, shipping his piece over and we have one on the east coast from Lunenburg, Nova Scotia. So, we’re excited about that.”
The annual project, which began in 2011, is an outdoor exhibition that runs from May through to October, with sculptures installed at sites throughout the downtown Elora and in Fergus.
It is an initiative of the Elora Business Improvement Area (BIA), in partnership with the Township of Centre Wellington, the Fergus BIA and Elora Centre for the Arts.
Officials say it is an opportunity to showcase the vibrant culture of the community and to provide exposure for artists.
Initially made up of local artists from the Elora and Fergus areas, the Elora Sculpture Project has expanded its scope to include artists from across Canada.
It has also grown in size and now features five sites in Fergus and 13 in Elora. One site is currently unavailable due to construction in Elora so the project will feature 17 sculptures this year.
“This year we can expect to have another great collection,” Cross explained.
“The reach that we have across the country is much broader now in terms of attracting artists.”
The project is run by a volunteer committee with support from the BIAs and in cooperation with the township. Funding for the project is provided by local businesses and residents.
Each fall the project opens a call for artists submissions that runs through to January. It is open to hobbyists, students and professional artists alike.
“We have a belief that public art enriches our community,” Cross explained.
“It’s something that the local residents will enjoy and if you’re not from the area, it’s like a discovery you’re not expecting.”
Works featured this year will include metal, clay and mixed media, with pieces ranging from figurative interpretations to complete abstraction.
“In terms of what to expect sculpture wise, I think we have a very diverse range of subjects and mediums,” Cross said.
While some sculptures are currently being installed, the Elora Sculpture Project will begin a little later than usual this year due to the ongoing COVID-19 provincial lockdown.
Organizers hope to have all sculptures installed for public display by mid-May.
“Our main goal is simply to provide some enjoyment for the residents and for the visitors and to provide an outlet for the creative people from within our community with an exhibition space,” Cross explained.
Being located outdoors allows the exhibition to carry on despite pandemic restrictions, but there will be no opening reception this year.
Fore more information visit elorasculpture.ca.