Steampunk art show appears in the ether

An art show is on now in a computer near you, after it got bumped out of its physical space and bumped down the calendar by this summer's wildfires.

The Steampunk Visual Art Display & Competition could perhaps be better called smokepunk, after suffering this summer's nasty burning sensation.

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It was slated to be based at the Railway & Forestry Museum for in-person viewing but the air was too polluted, and there was no way of predicting when it would clear.

Instead, organizers at Ridge Side Art put the call out to the region's artists to submit their best steampunk stuff and it was photographed for an online display that is now up for viewing on both Facebook and Instagram.

"It is not up in physical form, it is only virtual," said Christina Watts, curator of the show and competition.

"They will hold future events for steampunk at the Railway & Forestry Museum, but I think everybody understands how the fires affected things. But we had already gotten so much positive feedback about holding this art event that we went ahead and did it this way. It got a great response, I'm so impressed by all the pieces we received, and it sure gives us a hint about what's to come in future years when we can do the full partnership with the museum."

Twenty-five pieces were submitted. Each artist could enter a maximum of three pieces of art. Each one has its own snapshot on the Facebook and Instagram event page, and the artwork that receives the most likes will win the competition. Voting is open now (only one overall vote per person, please) and closes on Saturday.

All the artists are local, from varying backgrounds and experience levels.

"You can also inquire if the piece is available for sale," said Watts.

"You can message us through the event page, or call up Ridge Side Art's page, and we can put you in touch with the artist. Or you can put a message right there in the thread beside each piece."

Some of the submissions are traditional fine art, and some double as functional art (clocks, candelabra, pencil holder, etc.) but all are created using the steampunk aesthetic theme.

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