James S. Korpan
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Launching Goose, Avro Arrow
Internationally recognized sculptor James Korpan creates a monumental steel goose in Valdivia Chile, 2016

The twenty third annual Valdivia Sculpture Symposia held in the picturesque university city of Valdivia Chile, which stylizes itself as the “Cultural Capital of South America” was held This past February 8th to 18th in that city.

He was invited to Chile for the second time to participate in an International Symposia. He had been in Navidad, a coastal town in the region of O’Higgins Chile, at an International Symposia in 2007, and now feels Internationally recognized as the invitation to this juried event was quite an honour for him.

The Symposia was made up of ten sculptors, four from Chile and one each from; Argentina, Bolivia, Uruguay, Costa Rica, Mexico, along with yours truly from Canada. The event was hosted by the Municipal Cultural Committee a well-funded and well financed organization which supports the visual and preforming arts with permanent bureaucracy, gallery and administrative center located on the river in the heart of the city. The Cultural Committee hosted an opening reception, a gallery show of the works by the invited sculptors, a recognition dinner and a closing ceremony where Miss Chile 2015 presented me with my engraved participation medal.

At the recognition dinner I was invited to speak to the gathering on the state of Sculpture in Western Canada. My twenty minute talk touched on the Regina Five, the mentors Bill Epp, Joe Fafard, The Prairie Sculptors’ Association and various sculpture symposia of the past forty years in Saskatchewan.

The sculptures constructed at the symposia were both ambitious and successful. Three of the artists worked in marble and all three were successful in the completion of their abstracted designs. Two of the sculptors did wood carvings. They worked with two meter soft wood logs of one meter diameter each.

The remaining five sculptures were constructed of welded steel, and interestingly three of the steel sculptors were done by the three women at the symposia. All of the steel construct were of an abstract design. My piece was a stylized Canadian Goose / Avro Arrow launching from the picturesque setting of Saval Park Valdivia Chile, South America, on a northern trajectory.

My experience in Valdivia was made particularly pleasant by the presence of Mario Para and Karlos Vargas, world renowned sculptors who have also visited and contributed their Art to Saskatchewan. You can see more of the event on YouTube.

Valdivia Symposium

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