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  • “10th Anniversary” Online Art Competition

    Location: Palm Springs, CA

    Light Space & Time Online Art Gallery announces an art call for a..
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  • 15th Solo Art Series – Online Solo Art Exhibition Opportunity

    Location: Palm Springs, CA

    Light Space & Time Online Art Gallery announces its 15th “Solo Art Series”..
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  • Urgent issue of The Society for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge

    Location: Mississauga, ON

    CALL FOR SUBMISSIONS: URGENT ISSUE OF THE SOCIETY FOR THE DIFFUSION OF USEFUL..
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  • 2020 Social Distancing Exhibition

    Location: Vancouver, BC

    $1,000 in Artist Prizes. We know, you’re stuck at home. While many are stocking..
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  • 10th Annual

    Location: Palm Springs, CA

    Light Space & Time Online Art Gallery announces an art call for the..
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  • Call for Art - 5th Annual Animal Kingdom Art Competition

    Location: Palm Springs, CA

    Fusion Art invites submissions for the 5th Annual Animal Kingdom online art competition. For..
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  • Call for Art - Still Life Art Competition

    Location: Palm Springs, CA

    Fusion Art invites submissions for its 14th Quarterly Art Competition – Still Life. For..
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  • 2 ARTIST/ 2 PERSPECTIVES

    Location: Windsor, ON

    The workshop offers an opportunity to have access to two outstanding painters who..
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  • National Oil and Acrylic Painters Society 2020 Spring Online International Exhibition

    Location: , ON

    $4500 in Awards - The National Oil & Acrylic Painters’ Society (NOAPS) invites..
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  • Beacon Original Art Spring Show & Sale

    Location: Calgary, AB

    Annual spring 2-day art show and sale with different artists in attendance each..
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  • Nooks & Crannies Outdoor Art Festival: Call to Artists

    Location: Okotoks, AB

    Okotoks Culture seeks proposals from artists to create temporary public art installations in..
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  • BORDERS - ITSLIQUID International Art and Architecture Festival

    Location: Venice,

    CALL FOR ARTISTS BORDERS | Venice July-Nov 2020 ITSLIQUID International Art and Architecture Festival Deadline:..
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  • Acrylic Painting Workshop with Tatjana Mirkov-Popovicki

    Location: North Vancouver, BC

    April 4/5 2020. Learn how to quickly develop rich colour and surface in..
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  • $550.00 Innovate Grants — Call for Artists + Photographers

    Location: , NY

    Innovate Grant is now accepting submissions for the Spring 2020 Cycle. Innovate Grant..
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  • CALL FOR ARTISTS: CANVAS International Art Fair

    Location: London, UK,

    CANVAS International Art Fair THE LINE Gallery, London | May 07 – October 30,..
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  • 27th Lemonville Group of Artists Show and Sale

    Location: Town of Whitchurch-Stouffville, ON

    Please join The Lemonville Group of Artists for their 27th Annual Art Show..
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  • “Sensuality” International Call - Art & Literature Journal - Deadline April 30, 2020

    Location: Toronto, ON

    | Theme: A glance, touch, dance, flower, scent or piece of chocolate can..
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  • Artwork Shipping Scam

    Location: , AB

    This week an artist on our site was corresponding via email with an..
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  • Geoff Farnsworth: Colour Worker

    Location: Niagara-On-The-Lake, ON

    Join the Niagara Pumphouse for the opening reception for the exhibition entitled, “Geoff..
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  • Call for Entries: Art at the Pumphouse

    Location: Niagara-On-The-Lake, ON

    The Niagara Pumphouse Arts Centre is now accepting applications for participation in Art..
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  • Exaltation : Niagara Pumphouse Instructors' Exhibition

    Location: Niagara-On-The-Lake, ON

    Niagara Pumphouse is proud to host the Instructors’ Exhibition as its first show..
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  • Art, Wine, Interior Design Show

    Location: Winnipeg, MB

    Art, Wine, Interior Design Show! Exhibitor opportunities for Visual artists, Interior Designers and Wineries. Finding..
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  • National Oil and Acrylic Painters Society 2020 Spring Online International Exhibition

    Location: , ON

    The National Oil & Acrylic Painters’ Society (NOAPS) invites oil and acrylic painters..
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  • Land and Sky - 2 Artist/2 Perspectives

    Location: Windsor, ON

    PAINTING WORKSHOP AT SHO ART STUDIOS APRIL 3rd 4th and 5th 2020..
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  • Love At First Sight

    Location: Regina, SK

    Love At First Sight / Regina Art Collective members: Dave Gedjos / DeLee Grant..
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  • In Other Words

    Location: Regina, SK

    In Other Words / Regina Art Collective members: Nikki Jacquin / Derek Olson / Mark..
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  • Call for Art - 4th Annual Black & White Art Competition

    Location: Palm Springs, CA

    Fusion Art invites submissions for the 4th Annual Black & White online art..
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  • CALL FOR ARTISTS: VENICE INTERNATIONAL ART FAIR 2020

    Location: Venice,

    CALL FOR ARTISTS: VENICE INTERNATIONAL ART FAIR 2020 Venice | April 09 – May..
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  • CALL FOR ARTISTS: THE EXTENDED BODY 2020

    Location: London,

    CALL FOR ARTISTS: THE EXTENDED BODY – MIXING CULTURES ITSLIQUID International Art Exhibition THE..
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  • Appreciation of the Arts

    Location: London, ON

    Three day art and music event to recognize local artists in London, Ontario...
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  • Call to Artists - 2020 Sooke Fine Arts Show

    Location: Sooke, BC

    Artists are invited to submit work for consideration to the 2020 Sooke Fine..
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  • ACAF (Accessible Art Fair) 2020

    Location: Brussels,

    ACAF (Accessible Art Fair) is back on October 15-18, 2020 for its 14th..
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  • Call For Artists: The Other Art Fair Toronto

    Location: Toronto, ON

    The Other Art Fair are thrilled to present the newest edition of The..
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  • Marlene Kawalez and Corynn Kokolakis

    Location: Toronto, ON

    Presented by: Cedar Ridge Gallery. Part of the Cedar Ridge Gallery Contemporary Exhibition series. March..
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World Tea Party

By Robert Amos August 19, 2004

} World Tea Party By Robert Amos The Art Gallery of Greater Victoria (1040 Moss Street), in conjunction with the Community-University Research Alliance of the University of Victoria and the Asia Arts Society, is hosting a summer-long World Tea Party. Central to this is a large display of antique tea wares of England, China and Japan. An extensive lecture series considers variations of the theme and tea parties will be going on all over town. Chinese Yixing ware tea pot, 19th century. At the moment, tea party headquarters seems to be the dining room of the old mansion at the Gallery. Bryan Mulvihill is manning the teapot at the centre of this storm. Mulvihill has hosted World Tea Parties in Venice, London, Ottawa, Vancouver and now Victoria. Last Friday afternoon, I was invited to take a place at the table and was offered some Darjeeling tea in a little Chinese cup. And the conversation began. “Tea is more than something to drink. I’m documenting the whole process,” Mulvihill intoned. “For me these tea salons are the studio - people meeting over different tea events. You can’t do it at home alone. These are human meeting rituals, around the simple act of sharing a cup of tea,” he underlined. “But who would come if we called it the “World Human Meeting Ritual Exhibition”?”. Victoria is surely a tea town. Everyone has some tea utensils, maybe inherited from granny. “I doubt that there is a house in this city that doesn’t have a teapot,” Mulvihill suggested. “When we were preparing this show we put ads in the newspaper and we got a huge response. We went through all the public collections - the RBCM, the Maltwood at UVic, the AGGV and all the heritage houses. And the highest quality artifacts came from private collections.” Hannah Maynard, British Columbia, photograph, 3 for tea Celestial Seasonings, which introduced herbal teas to the American market in the 1960’s, is the very active corporate sponsor of the Global Tea Party. In the beginning, that company was a group of people collecting wild herbs outside Boulder, Colorado. They became an integral part of our “alternative” culture, and now package and sell 70 million pounds of herbs every year. Remember those cosmic homilies printed on their packages - “Life is what happens while you’re busy doing other things”? Tea is the world’s most popular beverage, after water. Meeting for tea has replaced our sense of “meeting at the well”, the water source. The source was where information was shared, a place to meet travellers and strangers. Now that we have water on tap, we don’t need to go to the well. That’s why Starbucks is so popular. It’s somewhere to sit down. All tea - green, oolong or black - is made from the leaves of the tea bush - camellia sinensis. From China, tea spread all over the world. It was shipped from China to England. The English introduced tea-growing to India because they couldn’t get enough from Chinese traders to satisfy their home market’s appetite. The Chinese maintained the mystery and never let the foreigners into the tea gardens. It was an English doctor, stationed in Calcutta, who arranged for some seeds of the Chinese tea plant to be smuggled to him in the bottom of a blue and white vase. The secret was out. The English subsequently planted vast tracts of tea in the Himalayas, in Assam, and later in Sri Langka, Kenya and Rhodesia. It was even grown here in the Fraser Valley in the 19th century. Our climate is fine for tea , but we don’t have the labour force. The Chinese never sent their best tea to the English, which is perhaps why the English like to put milk and sugar in their tea. Even so, in the 18th century, when a skilled labourer might earn one shilling a week, a pound of tea could cost from 16 to 30 shillings. Worcester teapot. Queen Charlotte or Whorl pattern in underglaze blue and overglaze red and gilt. Photograph: Trevor Mills. Mild though it may be, we like tea for its physical effect. It may be the caffeine, or something else, but it “brightens you up”. Mulvihill told me that “it stimulates the pineal gland, the centre of cognition and awareness. That’s why it was taken up by Zen monks as an aid to meditation. Tea was brought to Japan by the monks, in fact” he noted. When the mind becomes focussed and aware, the effect of tea is heightened. Concentrating on the process of preparing tea brings the mind to one place, and one purpose. You become attuned to being here and now. When your mind is focussed, you feel the subtle effect of the tea more directly. “The whole purpose of the tea ceremony is to become highly aware of the participatory aspects of the ritual,” Mulvihill explained. “Then the tea can have its best effect.” While we sat and drank tea and talked, a number of others - visitors from New Orleans, the director of the gallery - joined us for a cup of tea and some of that good old-fashioned World Human Meeting Ritual. No matter what your connection is to tea, as a thirst quencher or a subject of scholarly research, there’s a seat for you at this summer’s World Tea Party. A full list of this summer’s tea events is available from the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria (www.aggv.bc.ca or 384-4101). Here are some special events taking place at the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria: July 30, 2-4 pm Tea Salon with Bryan Mulvihill August 1, 3pm First Nations Tea August 3, 1 pm Japanese Tea Ceremony demonstration August 5, 1pm Japanese Tea Ceremony etiquette August 17, 1 pm Japanese Tea Ceremony demonstration August 22, 1 pm Bengali Tea Salon August 26, 1 pm Sencha Tea with Bryan Mulvihill August 29, 1 pm “Black and White Tea” with Pat Martin Bates ___________________________________________ Copyright © 2004Robert Amos Robert Amos is an artist and art writer who lives in Victoria, B.C.. He can be contacted by e-mail and you can view his paintings at www.robertamos.com