Sometimes it’s easy to forget to be a tourist in your own town. When we go to other places we make plans to check out museums, galleries, tourist spots and local-recommended places to eat but at home it seems that sometimes we get stuck in a rut of only going to the same places that we always do, or overlooking some of the local cultural opportunities.
For week three of my doing 52 new things in 2022 project, I decided it was time to head to the Kelowna Art Gallery. I think the last time I visited was the first or maybe second summer we lived here so it’s been at least five years. My visit this week was prompted by the new exhibit, The Witness Blanket ( in Kelowna from January 15 to April 10, 2022)
In summary (from the information posted alongside the exhibit): The Witness Blanket is a travelling exhibition that honours the children who were forced into the residential school system in Canada. The installation is a cedar “blanket” with pieces of Indian residential school history. There are items provided by residential school survivors and they family members, as well as items reclaimed from former residential school sites: letters, photos, books, clothing, art and fragments of the building.
The installation is reproduction of the actual Witness Blanket – the original is currently undergoing conservation at the Canadian Museum of Human Rights.
It’s a really moving piece and I loved that part of the installation was a quiet corner with a place to sit and reflect. I also loved that there is an app that you can download to provide information on each of the pieces.
If you go, I suggest downloading the app first and taking a look through ahead of time, I found it was difficult to really “see” the art at the same time as clicking the app to read the information.
The Kelowna Art Gallery has a few exhibition areas which were a bit lighter to view. I took a bit of time to wander through the other areas before coming back to the Witness Blanket. The outdoor space was fun and was a hands on experience (although I just left the spheres where they were), there’s also an art vending machine (such a cool idea!) and an exhibit of Inuit art.
Outside the gallery is this sculptor of cars stacked on top of each other, it’s cool but I don’t really understand it.
Here are the gallery admission rates
Individual: $5, Students and Seniors: $4, Family: $10,Children under 12: FREE
On Thursdays, from 10 am to 8 pm, admission is FREE to everyone.