In recognition of Yukon School of Visual Arts graduates 2016

Mr. Silver: I rise on behalf of the Yukon Liberal Party and also the Official Opposition to tribute the grads of the Yukon School of Visual Arts in Dawson City. SOVA, as it is known, is an incredibly important institution to the residents of Dawson, and I hope that the students graduating look back at their time in the Klondike with great fondness.

The contributions made through direct programming of the school and the involvement of the students in community activities have an immense effect on the social fabric of the community. It is yet another great representation of the spirit of Dawson and its residents. I’m a huge believer in SOVA and also in Dawson’s artistic community as a whole. It has a positive effect on our image, on both the national and international stage, and continues to gain recognition, whether it’s in its galleries or in theatres or in film festivals. It is interesting to note that the majority of the full-time students this year who came to SOVA came from outside of the territory, which just showcases how strong the reputation has become.

This year, the students’ art was quite diverse and widespread. Last month, a collection of art from the students called “All the Way” was on display at the Yukon Arts Centre for a number of weeks, receiving a lot of attention from locals and media. I had a chance to tour that gallery and there is some fantastic work.

To name a few more, there were performance art pieces on the dike in Dawson City and also a couple of students were involved in the Dawson City International Short Film Festival, where Jun Chen was awarded the made-in-Yukon Emerging Artist Award.

SOVA is the perfect stepping stone for any adventurous student looking to be creative and to have an experience of a lifetime. Dawson has a strong arts community and I’m very happy to see it grow year by year.

Congratulations to all the students this year and thank you for making the winter in Dawson just a little bit more exciting. I would also like to take the time to thank the many instructors and staff at SOVA for their dedication and hard work over the past year.