With a summer of festivals nearly non-existent, it’s exciting to hear the Nelson International Mural Festival is still going to happen in 2020.

The importance of public art has only increased during days of closures and physical distancing. Outdoor galleries remain a source of hope, expression, and inspiration for many. With this in mind, the team at Nelson International Mural Festival (NIMF) has announced that more public art pieces are in store this year, as well as its first-ever fully digital festival.

Performance artists from across British Columbia will join in a digital celebration of public art from August 14-16, 2020. Preceding this weekend of free, family-friendly performances, we will also be facilitating a week of digital youth dance workshops in collaboration with the Youth Action Network and the Nelson and District Youth Centre. The process and the product of all murals created for NIMF will be brought into the virtual sphere where they can be enjoyed by both local and global communities.

The Nelson and District Arts Council is taking the following measures to ensure the safety and health of the community:

  • artists will not be permitted to paint unless they are in good health;
  • only muralists from BC will be allowed;
  • participating muralists will not have contact with any community members, spending all their time isolated at their wall or residence and receiving food and supplies through contactless delivery
  • community members wishing to view the murals in person will be asked to respect the provincial physical distancing guidelines.

The Nelson International Mural Festival has been around since 2018 and in years past has engaged local, national and international street artists, muralists, creators and arts lovers through large-scale public artworks and educational opportunities.

Feature photo credit: Muralist Jessa Gilbert photographed by Ingrid Love.