Long-time Richmond resident Jeni Chen was elated when she found out she was chosen as one of nine ambassadors to promote BC Culture Days, a province-wide event, being held from Sept. 24 to Oct. 24.
BC Culture Days’ ambassador program gave $1,000 to each of the selected ambassadors for their projects and $2,000 to participate in the six-month mentorship program.
Chen, a local artist, discovered her passion in art after emigrating from Taiwan 30 years ago and said it’s an exciting moment for her to be part of BC Culture Days as an ambassador after attending the event every year with her family.
“It’s an event that my son and I look forward to attending this year,” she told the Richmond News.
As an ambassador, Chen has been under the guidance of Natasha Smith, a Canadian visual and mixed-media artist, who is mentoring her in drawing and painting during the program.
“When I saw Natasha’s projects from the ArtStarts in Schools program, I knew I wanted her to be my mentor for BC Cultures Day,” said Chen.
“Her art was similar to my art journaling concept and when she agreed to be my mentor I was so happy.”
Chen told the Richmond News that she appreciates having a mentor during the program.
“It’s really great to have someone there to give you feedback on your work and since I’ve never had a mentor before, this is an amazing experience.”
During BC Culture Days, Chen will be hosting a free online art journaling class for participants to join from home. She will also host an in-person art workshop outside the Richmond Cultural Centre on Sept. 25 from 1 to 3 p.m.
Chen believes art is a form of creativity that anyone can experience and enjoy.
“I hope through my art people can understand the truth about enjoying life and freedom,” she said.
“BC Culture Days is an amazing event because it allows kids and adults to see and experience art in a way that can inspire them and also connect them with others.”
While drawing, painting and illustrations are Chen’s favourite forms of art, she has high hopes of attending a sculpture course at Emily Carr to broaden her artistic scopew.
Visit https://bit.ly/3ElLevK for more information on Jeni Chen’s art journaling class and other events and workshops that will be taking place during BC Cultures Day.