The South Peace Regional Archives has unveiled its latest exhibition, an in-depth, online showcase of the ongoing work at the archives during its pandemic closure. Executive Director Alyssa Currie says “Close Contact”, which was produced by Alia Kolodychuk, is meant to emphasize the value of community partnerships and preserving heritage, while maintaining social distancing.

“One of the unexpected side effects of the pandemic is a revitalized interest in local history… and I think is because people are looking for a sense of community identity that comes from understanding our past.”

Currie says to try to maximize the effect of the exhibit, they’ve pulled up archival film, text records, photographs, and oral history from the vast collection. She says while “Close Contact” is online-only, that will hopefully change in a few short months.

“We wanted to take this opportunity to showcase what we’ve been up to and give people something to do and engage with while getting to stay at home,” she says. “Later in the spring, hopefully when the Grande Prairie Museum reopens, the exhibit will also have a physical counterpart in the community room of the museum.”

The exhibit will connect the public to the frequently unseen work done in an archive, including processing collections, assisting researchers, work towards Reconciliation with Indigenous communities, and more.

The full exhibit can be found online on the South Peace Regional Archives website.