Purple Thistle - Community Art Space

A night spent in the Purple Thistle—an artist run communal space in East Vancouver for youth to explore, play, and create together.

The Thistle was a space for young people to come together and co-create, anyone was welcome to drop in and use the resources available—computers, dark room, screen printing supplies... 

"The Purple Thistle was started in 2001 by eight kids who wanted a space that was a mix between an open community and resource centre and an artist-run studio. We focus on young people (aged 15-30), because we feel these are the people who need to be supported in their independence the most. But we encourage participation on all levels from people aged one to one thousand.

Think of the place like a library or community centre. Please come on in and make yourself at home, find a way to make it useful for you, bring friends, projects and ideas. It’s a little unusual and will take some time to learn how to be part of the place, but people are friendly and there is really a lot that can happen here."

Now closed after almost 15 years—although the space is changing hands, the spirit and projects launched out of the Thistle continue on. Thank you for nurturing our collective creativity, see you around the city in all the new & exciting ways you've manifested.