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It’s Artsweek in Peterborough—a week-long showcase of the city’s many cultural highlights.

The events run from last Friday to this Saturday, September 13, and include performances, art shows, a historic walk, and workshops.

“Artsweek is a volunteer run, non-profit, week-long celebration of the arts that began in 2005 as a way of showcasing the talent, passion, and diversity of arts in Peterborough,” explained Wes Ryan, this year’s Artsweek coordinator.

Ryan explained the importance of Artsweek to all of Peterborough’s artists as giving “many a chance to present work they otherwise could not because of funding and logistical challenges.

“Partnering with Artsweek allows some new and upcoming artists the chance to produce works and gives established artists the opportunity to pursue projects that will have longevity. For the community as a whole, Artsweek highlights the diversity, professionalism, and talent within our community and invites people to discover their own artistic tendencies through workshops and presentations.”

This past weekend saw the start of events, including the Art Abandonment workshop series, held at the Art School of Peterborough, which runs until Thursday, September 11, with workshops in pottery, cartooning, drawing and painting, wire sculpture, book making, collaging, and other disciplines and art movements.

The Art Abandonment Project “seeks to release newly created artworks into the community, encouraging people to share their art, to discover art in new places, and illustrates the positive effect of art in the community,” explained Ryan.

The Electrick City Historic Walking Tour runs through the week until Friday, September 12, throughout the day and “offers a new perspective on Peterborough’s history and historic figures.”

Baba Yaga and the Lost Babushka, an Eastern European classic celebrating family and nature was performed over the weekend.

Workshops will be facilitated by the Peterborough Poetry Collective on weeknights from 5pm until 7pm at the Spill. “Tapestry for Change is the Poetry Collective’s invitation to Peterborough residents to stitch together niches of resilience and hope as we create a stronger community, collectively,” said Ryan (who is also a member of this year’s Collective).

Day Job is an exhibition that “strives to illustrate the struggles artists face in order to survive as artists, the sacrifices we make to afford an artistic life, and the importance of art in a balanced life.” It runs from September 9-13 (Tuesday to Saturday) from 11am-5pm at the Gallery in the Attic.

Finally, Totally Multi: Dennis Tourbin’s World of Art and Performance is a “retrospective of Dennis Tourbin’s diverse contributions to our local arts scene, a chance for audiences to discover the origins of places like Artspace and many other organizations that have been spawned since his efforts took hold in the 80’s.” The event is Saturday, September 13 in Market Hall at 8pm.

Ryan remarked that “the significance of art in Peterborough cannot be overstated. Art is a catalyst for change in our community, an income generator for local businesses and individuals, and most of all improves our quality of life through expression, shared narratives, and the creative process.

“Artsweek is an opportunity for new students to discover the rich and vibrant arts scene in this city, and to investigate their own artistic abilities. Artsweek encourages students to realize the artistic heritage, both old and new, that Peterborough offers. Our city is a creative space with much to offer for all types of artists. And, it’s very affordable and inviting.”