Vancouver Eastside Culture Crawl 2016 in review

The Eastside Culture Crawl is one of our favourite times of the year. So much so, we thought we would cover it before and after

Photos and writing by Jessie Hannah

Over 500 artists opened their studios over four days allowing art lovers to venture at their own pace. The Eastside Culture Crawl is the perfect time of year to pick up something for someone on your holiday shopping list, specifically if you are feeling the love.

Canadian made pillows for a cozy space made by Pillow Fight Factory.

Looking for something a little more edgy? Loose Lips loved these badass necklaces.

Carli Mari Sita’s jewellery sends clear messages.

Another artist who isn’t pussyfooting around the message is oil painter Sara J Molčan. Loose Lips spoke to Molčan whose bright coloured hair matches her colourful art. She explained that her art expresses ideas pertaining to memory and dreams, in addition to reclaiming powerful female words.

Sára J. Molčan’s powerful and vibrant oil paintings are the perfect gift for the feminist on your list.

Cat lovers rejoice! Clever cat art by Andrea Hooge was a weekend favourite.

Clever cat art by Andrea Hooge.

Mary Anne Tateishi also spoke with Loose Lips about her process-based paintings using multiple layers of tissue paper on birch panels, with a resin coating.

Tateishi’s enigma series is about keeping secrets. She wrote secrets onto the layers of paper. “After I’ve got 15 different layers of paintings, I tear it back so you can see the layers and hints of what came before. It’s kind of obliterated so it is like keeping secrets,” she said.


If you’re more into tactile art, the sculptures by Elemental Designs brought new life to scrap metal.

Sandra Bilawich combines carving and welding talents to combing stone and metal.

You may have heard about Vancouver’s chopstick repurposing program. Chopvalue collects chopsticks from various Vancouver eateries and creates wooden bamboo products.

Chopvalue’s creative chopstick art.

Not only do you experience a variety amazing art during the self-guided tour through art studios and homes at the Eastside Culture Crawl, but you also experience the process.

The demos allowed visitors to watch the artists work, providing a greater appreciation for the final products.The spaces themselves are just as beautiful: the smell of sawdust and wood in the workshops, the organized collections of metal scraps for furniture making;within these creative spaces, you see the environment, tools, and inspiration behind the art.

Arnt Arntzen’s alleyway shop was a marvel of organized scrap metal.

The chainsaw carving demo was jaw-dropping. Jesse Toso created a carving of a bird using various chainsaws, in front of a crowd, sawdust flying.

Jesse Tosso at work.


Each piece of art is unique, but Loose Lips chose the sticker room, covered from wall to ceiling, as the most unique art display of the year. The artist began printing stickers in his home, but moved into this studio as his passion needed a bit more room to grow.



If you didn’t make it to the Eastside Culture Crawl, you can follow the links to each artist and find out how you can shop local this holiday season.


jessieJessie is an east coaster attempting to infiltrate west coast culture. Her plethora of disconnected thoughts is expressed most frequently in barely decipherable handwritten letters in which she writes of her fondness for olives, a quality old-fashioned, and B.C. wilderness.