Haines Junction welcomes its first artist in residence

When Jacquelyn van Kampen flew into Whitehorse earlier this month, she started feeling inspired before the plane even touched down.

When Jacquelyn van Kampen flew into Whitehorse earlier this month, she started feeling inspired before the plane even touched down.

“Looking at the landscape coming up here, the whole time I was (pressing my) face to the window.”

The 29-year-old Toronto fashion design student will be spending the next three months getting inspired in the Yukon as Haines Junction’s first-ever artist in residence.

“When artists are around in the community it brings a certain vibrancy to the community and it inspires people maybe to do art or look more into art,” said organizer Heiko Haehnsen.

“We have kind of an artsy community. Many people don’t do it so much because they’re caught up in their jobs, but they have an artist background many times. So that’s exciting.”

Van Kampen is no stranger to travel. Four years ago she graduated with a degree in industrial design from a school in the Netherlands.

“I love going to new places and experiencing things totally fresh. Not knowing anybody and just immersing fully.”

After graduating she came back to Canada and found herself a desk job.

“Here that was what I could find and as a creative person I had a hard time with that.”

She started trying her hand in fashion and “found the thing that I’m meant to be doing.”

Van Kampen clearly sees crossover between her old career and her new foray into clothes. Her work has gone from concrete and wood to silks and cotton but she’s still building things, this time to wear.

“I love things that are tactile, so that not only I can feel it as I’m making it, but the audience can also feel it or be included somehow,” she said.

There’s the dress with a floor-length fringe skirt made entirely of alpaca wool.

In the winter of 2015, van Kampen and two other women had a $200 budget and 48 hours to complete the dress for Toronto’s runway competition, Creativ Catwalk.

They cut the donated yarn into pompoms and hand-stitched each one onto the dress.

“The point of the dress was that it feels warm. I wanted people to come up and pet the dress in a way. It’s like a living piece of art.”

Van Kampen is currently working on a spring/summer collection to be part of her school’s graduation fashion show in December. She said she has no doubt her time in Haines Junction will influence what she creates.

“For me personally, if I can find a way to connect in that way and create something out of that experience that’s a win for me,” she said.

“If I can create something that has my story and (the story of) people that I meet.”

Unlike other artist in residency programs where an artist is given a cabin or a studio to work in, van Kampen will be spending most of her time living with a local family in Haines Junction.

“I really get that people experience as opposed to being totally isolated in a cabin somewhere. Which is also a great experience, but different.”

Living with locals who are familiar with the area means she’s already getting involved in events all over the territory.

During this week’s Arts Up Front festival on Whitehorse’s waterfront, van Kampen will be running a workshop on marbling fabric and making silk scarves.

From Aug. 12 to 14, a weekend of crafting workshops will be happening in Haines Junction.

More than a dozen artists and crafters from around the territory are coming to the community to run classes like woven headbands, jewellery-making and leatherwork.

Van Kampen will be teaching a workshop on pattern drafting and fabric origami.

For more information on the weekend’s events, including the cost of workshops, contact Junctionjar@gmail.com

Haehnsen said he hopes van Kampen’s experience will lead to at least one artist in residence in Haines Junction every year.

Future residencies could focus on other types of art outside of clothing and textile, he said.

“I think this would be a very neat development for the area, to get artists in and using the beauty of the landscape we have without the need to change the landscape.”

Contact Ashley Joannou at

ashleyj@yukon-news.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News)
Exposure notice issued for April 3 Air North flight

Yukon Chief Medical Officer of Health Dr. Brendan Hanley has issued another… Continue reading

Crystal Schick/Yukon News file
Runners in the Yukon Arctic Ultra marathon race down the Yukon River near the Marwell industrial area in Whitehorse on Feb. 3, 2019.
Cold-weather exercise hard on the lungs

Amy Kenny Special to the Yukon News It might make you feel… Continue reading

Yukonomist Keith Halliday
YUKONOMIST: The Neapolitan election

Do you remember those old bricks of Neapolitan ice cream from birthday… Continue reading

Whitehorse City Hall (Joel Krahn/Yukon News file)
This week at city hall

A look at issues discussed by Whitehorse city council at its April 6 meeting.

Two people walk up the stairs past an advance polling sign at the Canda Games Centre on April 4. (Haley Ritchie/Yukon News)
April 12 is polling day: Here’s how to vote

If in doubt, electionsyukon.ca has an address-to-riding tool

lwtters
Today’s Mailbox: Rent freezes and the youth vote

Dear Editor, I read the article regarding the recommendations by the Yukon… Continue reading

Point-in-Time homeless count planned this month

Volunteers will count those in shelters, short-term housing and without shelter in a 24-hour period.

The Yukon’s new ATIPP Act came into effect on April 1. Yukoners can submit ATIPP requests online or at the Legislative Assembly building. (Gabrielle Plonka/Yukon News file)
New ATIPP Act in effect as of April 1

The changes promise increased government transparency

A new conservancy in northern B.C. is adjacent to Mount Edziza Provincial Park. (Courtesy BC Parks)
Ice Mountain Lands near Telegraph Creek, B.C., granted conservancy protection

The conservancy is the first step in a multi-year Tahltan Stewardship Initiative

Yukon RCMP reported a child pornography-related arrest on April 1. (Phil McLachlan/Black Press file)
Whitehorse man arrested on child pornography charges

The 43-year-old was charged with possession of child pornography and making child pornography

Team Yukon athletes wave flags at the 2012 Arctic Winter Games opening ceremony in Whitehorse. The postponed 2022 event in Wood Buffalo, Alta., has been rescheduled for Jan. 29 to Feb. 4, 2023. (Justin Kennedy/Yukon News file)
New dates set for Arctic Winter Games

Wood Buffalo, Alta. will host event Jan. 29 to Feb. 4, 2023

Victoria Gold Corp. has contributed $1 million to the First Nation of Na-cho Nyak Dun after six months of production at the Eagle Gold Mine. (Submitted/Victoria Gold Corp.)
Victoria Gold contributes $1 million to First Nation of Na-cho Nyak Dun

Victoria Gold signed a Comprehensive Cooperation and Benefits Agreement in 2011

Most Read