Turning wood into art explored

Workshop topics include working with art galleries, marketing, photographing art objects and starting up a business.

A CONFERENCE and art show this week is focussing on using natural resources to create art.

A  keynote speaker at Beyond Lumber will be Alano Edzerza, a Tahltan artist who runs a gallery in Vancouver and who has his own line of sportswear featuring northcoast art.

“Sometimes a single tree is worth much more when it is used to produce high quality art than when it is milled for lumber,” says Rick Brouwer from the Skeena-Nass Centre of Innovation in Resource Economics (SNCIRE) which is sponsoring the conference along with Northwest Community College.

“By focusing on high value products such as art first and commodities second, we are taking better advantage of our natural resources, and that is key if our region wants to escape the boom and bust cycles.”

SNCIRE has been at the forefront of efforts to encourage governments and companies to move past a traditional sawmill economy to use wood and resources in different ways. It’s encouraged governments and companies to think about bio-energy and has promoted the idea of increasing skills training in the region.

Beyond Lumber takes place June 29 and June 30 at Northwest Community College.

Workshop topics include working with art galleries, marketing, photographing art objects and starting up a business.

There’s a salmon barbecue the first night and an art show from 6-8 pm.