“Ayah,” a digital photo from the “Seven Stories” cultural exchange project on view at Surrey Art Gallery this fall, in partnership with Progressive Intercultural Community Services Society. (submitted photo)

“Ayah,” a digital photo from the “Seven Stories” cultural exchange project on view at Surrey Art Gallery this fall, in partnership with Progressive Intercultural Community Services Society. (submitted photo)

ART EXHIBIT

Women, girls from Mid-East countries reveal life in Canada in photos at Surrey gallery

‘Seven Stories’ exhibit starts Sept. 25, in partnership with PICS program

One of the fall exhibits at Surrey Art Gallery features photographs by women and girls from Jordan, Iraq and Syria who are now living in Metro Vancouver.

The “Seven Stories” showcase was developed in partnership with Surrey-based Progressive Intercultural Community Services Society (PICS).

The photo sets offer a glimpse into the photographer’s life and journey in Canada, according to an event advisory. Gratitude, family and friendship are recurring themes in the photographs, to be shown from Sept. 25 to Nov. 28. Admission is free.

The project, funded in part by Surrey’s cultural grants program, emerged as an initiative of the PICS settlement department led by Nazam Bains and Devinder Chatta in early 2020.

“I wanted to show how families adapt to Canadian culture, but also share what memories and heritage they’ve brought from their home countries,” explained Bains.

Project participants learned camera skills from a professional photographer.

“The final results show a diversity of life experiences and challenges, along with the creative ways each individual expresses their story,” says the event advisory. “Despite these differences, a common humanity connects the photographs.”

Other exhibits at Surrey Art Gallery this fall include “q̓ʷɑti̓cɑ: k̓ʷam̓k̓ʷəm̓ tə šxʷhəliʔ / Phyllis Atkins: Divine Connection,” “Sandeep Johal: What If?,” the video installation “Manuel Piña: Naufragios” and “Atheana Picha: Echoes,” a new installation on the windows of the Surrey Arts Centre that celebrates the significance of Coast Salish mountain goat horn bracelets.

Elsewhere, UrbanScreen again features Flavourcel collective and its “I Spy a City” animations, on the west wall of Chuck Bailey Recreation Centre starting Sept. 25. Members of the collective will give an artist talk at Surrey Art Gallery on Saturday, Sept. 18 from 6 to 7 p.m., with Alia Hijaab, Lana Connors and Josh Neu. “Visitors will learn more about how each member interpreted their own experience of Surrey to inform their artistic process and how the collective has come to forge their own distinctive identity in the local contemporary art community,” says an event advisory.

More details are posted to surrey.ca/artgallery.



tom.zillich@surreynowleader.com

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“Safaa,” a digital photo from the “Seven Stories” cultural exchange project on view at Surrey Art Gallery this fall, in partnership with Progressive Intercultural Community Services Society. (submitted photo)

“Safaa,” a digital photo from the “Seven Stories” cultural exchange project on view at Surrey Art Gallery this fall, in partnership with Progressive Intercultural Community Services Society. (submitted photo)