TWU Art + Design Honours student's new exhibition at the SAMC Gallery reclaims play and imagination

Through the exhibition Play Ground, Bethany Haynes-Kramm seeks to reclaim the gallery space from associations of stuffy pretension.

October 20 to November 27

SAMC Gallery, inside the Norma Marion Alloway library (Trinity Western University, 22500 University Drive)

Lunchtime Talk:
Nov. 3, 12:00–12:30pm

"...Kramm’s playful works re-envision the gallery space as a site of
adventure, exploration and play." 

"Galleries often demand our best behavior—we are instructed not to touch, to move about in quiet contemplation, to keep our voices down," Alysha Creighton, Sessional Assistant Professor of Art + Design, says in introducing the exhibition. "In contrast, Kramm’s playful works re-envision the gallery space as a site of adventure, exploration and play." 

Bethany Haynes-Kramm, Art + Design honours student.

Hung with brightly coloured textiles, Play Ground invites the viewer into a space of curiosity and delight. Light and shadow play across the walls. Notes prompt visitors to interact with and contribute to the artworks in an ongoing collaboration between artist and audience. Four sculptural installations comprised of yarn, cloth, cassette film and a tempting mound of bubble gum entice viewers to return to a time when play was a natural way of relating to the world. 

"By creating an immersive and imaginative space, Kramm opens potential to 'dream of different [...] environments and worlds.'” Creighton continues. "Kramm's work prompts us to consider: what kind of world becomes possible when we are freed from our routine environments? What world might we dream together if we made space for play and reclaimed imagination?"

Play Ground is on display at the SAMC Gallery October 20 to November 27. This exhibition is in partial fulfillment of Bethany Haynes-Kramm’s Honours thesis in Art + Design


Artist's statement

As children, when we learn to play, we foster imagination. Children often say they won’t be like boring adults when they grow up, but slowly, we forget our playful nature and how to imagine. Our rusty imaginations seek reprieve from our day-to-day, but our muscles have grown weak; we need to relearn the practice of play. I am interested in dynamics where everyone is curious. Pedro Reyes says, “if you always rely on the expert, then you are preventing yourself from having an education and a voice of position.” He calls this process of moving away from an expert perspective “de-professionalism.” Through spaces of mutual curiosity, there is a place for play, imagination, testing, and safe failure. Have you ever watched a cat or dog interact by playing? They are brimming with curiosity; it is essential to who they are. Imagination allows us to reinvent and dream of different spaces, environments, and worlds. Through creating, we discover a restorative process to see potential in the everyday. These works hope to create a childish space that gives room for exploration, providing freedom from our routine environments and allowing viewers to experience their imagination with a sense of whimsy.

About the artist

Bethany Kramm is a multimedia artist based out of the Fraser Valley. Her practice is driven by curiosity and is primarily installation based. Growing up across Western Canada, her work has often been driven by themes of home, childhood, place, connection, and community. Her most recent work has focused on themes of play and imagination. Bethany holds a B.A. in Art & Design from Trinity Western University.

About Trinity Western University

Founded in 1962, Trinity Western University is a global Christian liberal arts university. We are dedicated to equipping students to discover meaningful connections between career, life, and the needs of the world. Drawing upon the riches of the Christian tradition, seeking to unite faith and reason through teaching and scholarship, Trinity Western University is a degree-granting research institution offering liberal arts and sciences as well as professional schools in business, nursing, education, human kinetics, graduate studies, and arts, media, and culture. It has four locations in Canada: Langley, Richmond-Lansdowne, Richmond-Minoru, and Ottawa. Learn more at or follow us on Instagram @trinitywestern, Twitter @TrinityWestern, on Facebook and LinkedIn.

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