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Hands of Time to celebrate Victoria's 150th anniversary

Jun 27 2012

Kelowna-based artist Crystal Przybille has won a national competition to create a piece of public art celebrating Victoria's 150th anniversary of incorporation.

Her proposal, Hands of Time, will see 12 bronze sculptures of life-size hands installed at downtown locations this fall.

The three-dimensional hands will be engaged in activities related to the city's history. They will represent various cultures, ages and genders, while telling a story about a downtown location. One pair will carve a cedar canoe paddle, for example. Another will tie a rope to a mooring ring, and another will perform with a Chinese fan.

The number 12 represents the city's sesquicentennial in 2012, as well as the number of months in a year and hours on a clock face.

Przybille was one of more than 80 artists from across the country who submitted proposals. She advanced through the semifinals with 15 other artists, from which four were invited to submit a maquette and detailed proposal.

A jury under Jon Tupper, chairman of Victoria's art in public places committee and director of the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, assessed the proposals on artistic merit, expression of theme, feasibility, use of public space and sustainability.

The budget for the artworks is $100,000, funded by the art in public places reserve fund.

Przybille graduated with distinction from the University of Victoria's bachelor of fine arts program in 1997. She has split the past nine years between Canada and Europe, where she studied and practised art. She has had solo exhibitions at the Alternator gallery in Kelowna and the Vernon Public Art Gallery. She has also completed residencies in the Netherlands, Nunavut and Kelowna. asmart@timescolonist.com