Vancouver’s International Airport (YVR) has been voted the best airport in North America five years consecutively by Skytrax World Airport Awards, the only Canadian airport, save for Toronto Pearson, on the top 10 list. Its global acclaim can be perhaps attributed, in part, to the tranquility that its native artwork collection brings to the typically hectic airport environment. Art historian and critic Robin Laurence’s new book, A Sense of Place: Art at Vancouver’s International Airport, is a celebration of the First Nations art that adorns the halls of YVR. Organized in themes central to travel—land, sea, and sky—A Sense of Place illuminates the native legends that inspired many of the artists who created the world-famous works that have been on display since 1993. That year, the YVR Art Foundation was established, which began providing scholarships for B.C.’s First Nations artists. Since, YVR’s resident art curator has collected iconic works, like the permanent installation of Haida artist Bill Reid’s The Spirit of Haida Gwaii: The Jade Canoe, a six-ton bronze sculpture inspired by nineteenth-century miniature carved stone canoes found on Haida Gwaii. A cultural map of YVR’s prized art collection, A Sense of Place teaches Vancouver’s visitors and locals alike more about the land on which they stand.
Note: As of March 2017, YVR has been named the best airport in North America for eight consecutive years.