Meet The North Coast Artists' Cooperative
The Ice House Gallery is an excellent example of what a committed group of individuals can do when they combine their talents and passion. The gallery is a unique consortium of artists who are all members of the North Coast Artists’ Cooperative. Its members are all artists who live in places throughout northwest BC from Telkwa to Haida Gwaii. The mission of the North Coast Artists’ Cooperative is to provide a venue for its member artists to share, exhibit and sell their work in a high-quality gallery environment.
The cooperative and the gallery were initially launched thanks to a government grant, and the Ice House Gallery was opened in 2004 just in time for the first cruise ship season in Prince Rupert. Today, the gallery is entirely self-sustaining. The group sometimes gets a seasonal grant for a student to work in the summer months. However, the day-to-day operations, as well as all of the behind-the-scenes work, is undertaken almost completely through the work of volunteers from within the cooperative. It is a fact that member and artist Laurie Gray is especially proud of. She notes that the volunteers work tirelessly all year-round to make the gallery a beautiful, inviting space and to keep the organization running smoothly.
To have done so for more than a decade is no small feat for a group that relies almost exclusively on volunteer help. Laurie notes that the local artists’ community is a tight-knit one and is committed to seeing the arts thrive in Prince Rupert. Not only does the group operate the gallery, it also hosts numerous art events and fundraisers throughout the year, raising money for various arts-related projects, including an annual high school arts bursary for a local graduating high school student.
Original. Artistic. Unique.
The Ice House Gallery is home to the works of approximately 40 artists who live in northwestern BC. Each artist brings something different, culminating in a gallery of diverse works in a variety of different mediums. Housed in Atlin Terminal in historic Cow Bay, the building once served as a fish factory. It has been converted into a contemporary office and retail space, and the gallery portion of the building features an open ceiling and airy feeling that is ideal for showcasing works of art of all kinds. Guests can view an eclectic collection of watercolour and acrylic paintings, photography, wood carvings, fibre arts, pottery, leather works, hand-made clothing, cedar weavings, fused and stained glass, moccasins, hand-made soap, jewellery, soapstone carvings, art cards, post cards and many other items. Works encompass a wide price range, making the Ice House Gallery’s art affordable for any budget. The Ice House Gallery is operated by the North Coast Artists’ Cooperative and membership is open to artists living in northwest BC between Telkwa and Haida Gwaii.
Interested in membership or volunteer opportunities? The North Coast Artists’ Cooperative is always looking for new artists as well as volunteers (artists and non-artists). Please contact the gallery for more info.
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