With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, The Love Letter Project has taken initiative to remind us that it is not all about romance.
The project is launching its first exhibit at the Omega Gallery on Dunbar Street, running Feb. 6 through Feb. 14. It will feature a book with 18 letters paired with paintings by local artists.
“We had narrowed it down to a larger group [of letters] at which point the artists got to say,
‘okay this one resonates for me,’ and that’s ultimately how they got picked,” said the project’s founder Fiona McGlynn.
Founded in January 2014 by McGlynn, theloveletterproject.ca encourages people to submit letters about difficult times they have faced. The letter are meant to help readers overcome their own challenges, said McGlynn.
We started getting letters on all different subjects. A lot of them common things like anxiety, society, depression,” McGlynn said. “As we collected thee stories, we started to see some really beautiful things happen in the community.”
McGlynn recounted a letter written by child about a family member who committed suicide. “There was this guy who wrote in and said, ‘thank you so much for posting this letter. I was going to take my own life, but after reading this I don’t want my kids to feel like that,'” she said.
Local artist jumps on board with the project
McGlynn teamed up with local artist Jamie Smith, for the exhibit.
Smith, who was worked as a full-time artist for two years, met McGlynn at a group for female entrepreneurs called the Loaded Bow.
“She told me about The Love Letter Project with these anonymous letters and it was very similar to the things I was interested in with art,” Smith said, who had asked McGlynn if she thought of accompanying with the letters.
“I was in charge of coordinating artists and putting the project into visual terms for the artists to work from,” Smith said. “The book has been a year in the making, so we’re really excited for [the exhibit] because it’s our visions coming together.”