“Art transforms concerts into festivals.”
That’s one of the guiding principles of The Guild, a collective of independent artists from the Sea-to-Sky Corridor that designs massive, interactive art installations and stage environments all over North America. The Guild’s art has featured prominently at Pemberton Music Festival and Bass Coast, with plans to showcase new work at festivals throughout North America this year.
Local artists Liz Thomson and Andor Tari co-founded the Guild in 2013 as a collective of independent, Sea-to-Sky-based artists who share a desire for collaboration and a love for the creative process. According to Thomson, the duo’s unique combination of skills helped the collective see immediate success.
“Everything you do to further your education” makes a difference in the art world, Thomson said. In both the Guild and her work with Bass Coast, Thomson aims to help provide resources and education to young or up-and-coming artists. “I suggest taking a few graphic design courses to all entrepreneurs,” Thomson says, adding that “compelling and accurate visual communication” skills have been fundamental to the Guild’s early progression.
Thomson’s own extensive art education is apparent in the Guild’s work. She has experience in a wide range of artistic media, including classic art, sculpture, videography, editing, graphic design, website development, art installations, stage design, and fashion — “pretty much anything I can get my hands on creatively,” she added. This creative flexibility has led to a wide range of past installations, from a panelled wooden stage filled with a complex array of lights to a ceiling strung with hundreds of fluttering strips of fabric to a full-fledged pirate ship replete with tattered sails and ornate metalwork.
The Guild’s existing installations are so intentionally designed, you’d never guess that they were built using primarily salvaged and recycled materials.
The team collects waste wood from nearby mills, leftover building materials and other salvaged and secondhand items to create all of their work. This emphasis on creative reuse of materials is central to the collective’s aim to produce environmentally sustainable art.
In coming months, the collective will be exhibiting works at Huka Entertainment productions in Florida as well as this summer’s Pemberton Music Festival. “The rest,” Thomson says, “is top secret!”