I hit the campaign trail today with my sister (official photographer) to attend the Bowker Creek Brush-Up, an annual favourite of mine and such a wonderful event that showcases the immense talent of our local artists and their work. I enjoyed bumping into friends Daphne Goode (formerly of Shaw Cable), Victor Lotto, popular local Oak Bay artist, Diana and Michael Butler (Diana was a former Oak Bay Mayor) and other candidates Esther Paterson and Andrew Stinson.
The weather was perfect, not too hot, and the crowds were steady. I bought a beautiful print from a student artist, a recent graduate of the Victoria College of Art. She does lovely work in oils and reproduces some of them in print form. There are so many great artists who enter this event and so many great works of art in various media, that it’s difficult not to buy just about everything one sees.
Oak Bay is fortunate to have such a vibrant arts and culture community and we should do all we can as residents, businesses and local government to support our artists whenever, wherever and however we can. For the municipality, the imperative is to practice sound budget management so that funding for arts and culture is both protected and always available.
A strong financial plan that adequately addresses the present and the future is the only way forward, which is why a more proactive approach to fiscal responsibility is a must in Oak Bay, perhaps now more than ever before.
Arts and culture in Oak Bay are significant community values that reflect the importance of working together as a community and a municipality, to sustain a supportive environment in which arts and culture continue to thrive.