You may have noticed them grazing inside Opus Framing and Art Supplies or standing near the cash registers at Shoppers Drug Mart in Brookswood. Now the life-sized horse statues are galloping into Willowbrook Mall.
From Jan. 14 to Feb. 3 the Langley Arts Council’s Horsing Around Langley Exhibit will be set up along the “Horseshoe Trail” at Willowbrook Shopping Centre.
The exhibit features eight life-sized horse sculptures that have been transformed from plain white structures into colourful works of art.
It is all part of a year-long public art initiative to raise awareness and funds for the arts in Langley.
“What’s neat about all of them is that every single one of them is unique,” said LAC president Rosemary Wallace, who co-painted a colt with Lalita Hamill for the project.
“When we first got them they were just white horses, but now that they’re painted, they are pretty cool,” said Wallace.
By blending the agricultural, arts and cultural communities of Langley, the project is meant to reflect Langley’s heritage and its role as the Horse Capital of B.C.
Each horse requires a sponsorship of $10,000 to complete, and the Langley Arts Council is still seeking sponsors, Wallace added. A few of the horses have only been partly funded so far.
“For the other artists it was a challenge for them because it wasn’t painting on a canvas, so the curves of the horse had to lend itself to the painting,” Wallace said. “I think they were frustrated at the beginning, but they were excited with the end result.”
While the exhibit is at Willowbrook, there are also several equine activities shoppers can participate in.
As part of the Horsing Around contest, shoppers can enter to win a $1,000 Horsing Around Langley activity package which includes horse riding lessons, dining, entertainment and shopping.
On Jan. 19, the mall is hosting a Horsing Around Kid’s Party from 1 to 4 p.m. for kids ages 3 to 13. It is a free party with horse games, crafts, activities and entertainment. Attendance is limited, so advanced registration is recommended by calling 604-530-4492 or visiting Willowbrook’s Customer Service.
Then on Jan. 26 and Feb. 2 from 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. the public is invited to meet the Horsing Around Langley artists Marilyn Dryer Siedel, Vivian Harder, Felicity Holmes, Glenda Mantle, Jeanie Shilton, Louise Swan, Becky Wallace, and Rosemary Wallace.
For more information, visit www.langleyarts.org.