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Through the Looking Glass augments reality

New exhibit set to open at The Gallery on Dec. 1 using app to view behind-the-scenes efforts

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A new art show at The Gallery is putting the "social" back in social media.

Through the Looking Glass—An Art Adventure, featuring work by Sea to Sky corridor artists Vanessa Stark, Andrea Mueller and Andy Anissimoff will include an "augmented reality" app that will show visitors behind-the-scenes videos of how the pieces were created.

Think of it as Instagram stories come to life, says Stark, who spearheaded the exhibit.

"It's short, Instagram-style; glimpses behind the scenes," she says. "I love seeing what's going on with other people's processes and how their stuff is created. I think it's interesting when artists post bits and pieces of their whole life and you can see where they live and what drives them."

Before the exhibit kicks off on Dec. 1—with the opening party set for Dec. 8—visitors to the gallery can download the HP Reveal app and follow a specific "channel" called Through the Looking Glass to see the accompanying videos.

"A friend of mine from Idaho used it in his art show," Stark says. "Then I noticed a lot of augmented reality stuff ... It was kind of fun. I haven't seen too much of it."

The exhibit will also still be fun for those who leave their iPhones at home though. It will feature large-scale pieces by the trio of popular local artists.

One that Stark contributed is called Mountains Are Calling and features a big bear with Mount Fee inside its mouth, surrounded by Northern Lights. "It's the connection with nature," Stark says. "Grizzly bears are coming back into our area and having the mountains inside of you—it's about connection too."

For her part, Mueller contributed four pieces, measuring 0.6 metres-by-1.8 metres. "It's a typical art show," she adds. "It's going to be great no matter what. You can come see all our artwork or, what the app allows you to do is see behind-the-scenes aspects of the work."

Mueller says she's enjoyed the connection social media has offered artists in recent years. "My Instagram is pretty much chock-a-block full of artists," she says. "For me, it's interesting to see what other people here are doing and what's happening in L.A., Germany and New York. It's brought in the world, especially in a small mountain town."

Through The Looking Glass runs at The Gallery at the Maury Young Arts Centre from Dec. 1 to February 2019. The opening party is set for Dec. 8 from 7 until 9 p.m.

For more on how to download the app in advance, visit https://artswhistler.com/the-gallery.

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