Art & Artists in Exhibition: Vancouver 1890 - 1950
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British Columbia Artist


The designation of British Columbia Artist, abbreviated as B.C.A., was a short-lived attempt to establish a formal certification of West Coast artists. The exhibition catalogue for the 1921 B.C. Society of Fine Arts Annual Exhibition is virtually the only time this designation was used - and the majority of artists listed in the catalogue have the designation B.C.A..

The designation was an attempt to establish a formal recognition for B.C. artists, regardless of whether they were members of the B.C. Society of Fine Arts, the Studio Club, the Vancouver Sketch Club, the Island Arts and Crafts Society, or any other group of artists. The attempt seems to have been shortlived, since there was no further use of the designation (that the editor is aware of).

A number of years later the Vancouver Art Gallery began a series of annual exhibitions, open to the artists of the entire province of British Columbia, known as the B.C. Artists Annual Exhibition. The use of the name B.C. Artists for these exhibitions may well have inadvertently helped people to forget the earlier designation, and causes some confusion.


Annual Exhibit of the British Columbia Society of Fine Arts
      1921, September 19 - 24, exhibition catalogue

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