fernanda seffrin: Viewfinder is the expression of a generation composed of various backgrounds that have a common love to the North Shore and everything that this place represents in our lives. This work deals with perceptions and memories, and poses the question of how we view our environment and how it affects us. It asks us to open our eyes to the little details that we most of the time don’t pay attention to. It’s important to highlight the process of creation of this piece that has been a beautiful experience for all of the people involved in it. I hope more projects like this are created so that more and more people have access to such an experience!
mandana salimian: Our ‘Viewfinder’ stands firmly by its name, though it is a matter of the ‘egg and hen’ debate that the view found us or we found the view. Some viewfinders had endowed hands in design, whereas some, like myself, had only the mind that could go far beyond what we’d normally and routinely see. We all inspired and allowed our bare fantasies of jaw-dropping pieces of art to be instilled. After all, is this not the team spirit? And just like a chemical reaction, we too needed a catalyst, except ours took his mediating role beyond and above a mere supervision. James is IT. Our occasional meetings in his studio were filled with the pleasant stench of metal, and fascination over his ability to craft the unthinkable from metal. Now that the results are out, the eight of us are the proud forbearers of a garden bed that hosts our views, and those of many others who cross paths with Lonsdale Quay every day.
shamus izatt: Viewfinder is the very genuine expression of several youth. It is not only a reflection of the surrounding environment, but also a blend of self proclamation. It is an inspired labour of amity and a strong aesthetic addition to the lonsdale quay. In order for this to have been created, 8 perfect strangers were brought together and mentally adhered to one another . Viewfinder can be described in one word: Human.
wen-ching shang: Viewfinder centers on the theme of perceptions in our daily lives. A lot of images appear so mundane to us that we often overlook and forget about them. Viewfinder is a series of simple frames that showcase the beauty of these ordinary images. It draws our attention to things often left out of our minds, from mosquitoes to half-open doors to a hanging teapot. Similarly, it also reminds us to pay attention to the minor details, to see the edges through an magnifying glass and notice the fingerprints left on everything around us.
ilinca ianorescu: The viewfinder is a collection of works inspired by 7 young artists that live in North Vancouver. I was very honored to be part of this great team. We have spent over four months thinking of unique ways to come up with a story line, and a symbolic way to explain what The Quay and North Vancouver mean to us. Since we all have different views, we came up with the brilliant idea of joining between three and five symbols each that would come together to represent our view of our delightful community. Hope you find your view through our works as well!
shaghayegh namazi: Viewfinder has been almost a two-year long public art project for the city of North Vancouver, consisting of 7 designers. We were selected by our supervisor and designer/metal expert, James Koester, through individual interviews. The geographical area of focus was located by Lonsdale quay market. Each of the designers were responsible with coming up with two separate designs to be built into metal sculptures, built by James. Even though our designs were done individually, Viewfinder was very much a group collaboration that consisted of weekly group meetings, discussions and drawings both at Lonsdale quay and James' studio, with a very diverse group of students. What I enjoyed the most about the process was the creative freedom and what North Vancouver and in particular Lonsdale Quay meant to each of us, personally. Aside from designing, this project was also very much about communication/articulation of ideas and how one needs to present her/his design to different groups of people who do not have a prior knowledge of the project. The beautiful finished sculptures were lovely a bonus to this fulfilling process.
jessie ning: Viewfinder is a collective yet individual perspective formed by various ideas and influences within our community. This installation is a collaborated one – each of the seven young artists came up with designs which contain subject matters that he/she was interested in. Throughout the meetings, designs were refined and shaped to echo with the community interest as well as expressing individuality in an appropriate visual language.