Three artists, three work spaces, one river - Yukon News - Canadanewsmedia
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Three artists, three work spaces, one river – Yukon News



Work by three artists, completed in three workspaces all connected by one river will be highlighted in an upcoming show at the Yukon Arts Centre Community Gallery.

The trio were part of the three-week Chu Niikwän Artist Residency which wrapped up its second year Sept. 15. An exhibit is slated for November.

The residency is a partnership between the Yukon Arts Centre, Yukon Art Society and the Kwanlin Dün Cultural Centre.

It began in 2018 out of a desire by the groups to work together on an initiative incorporating the spaces they each have near the Yukon River (Chu Niikwän in Southern Tutchone), Yukon Arts Centre director of visual arts Mary Bradshaw said Sept. 9.

The KDCC has its culture cabins along the river near the start of Front Street, the Yukon Arts Centre has the Old Fire Hall on Front Street near Main Street and the Yukon Art Society has Arts Underground on Main Street near Third Avenue.

As Heather Steinhagen, executive director at Arts Underground, said Sept. 10 there are not a lot of residency opportunities for artists in the Yukon. This program — which began under the leadership of former Arts Underground executive director Courtney Holmes — aims to provide that opportunity.

The 2018 inaugural residency proved a success with artists Blake Lepine, Lia Fabre-Dimsdale and Nicole Bauberger’s work showcased in an exhibit just after the residency portion of the program ended. Rebecca Manias and Katie Newman were the curators for the 2018 program.

“It was more of a pilot,” Bradshaw said.

It was clear following the 2018 program that the residency was a success, but more time was needed to put the exhibit together.

“That was rushed,” Bradshaw said.

Hence in 2019, officials opted to take a couple of months between the end of the residency and the exhibit opening.

This year Meshell Melvin was selected as the advanced artist to work out of the Yukon Arts Centre’s Old Fire Hall with Shirley Adamson selected as the Indigenous advanced artist working out of KDCC and Talia Woodland as the emerging artist to be based out of Arts Underground.

Karly Leonard is working as the emerging curator in residence.

Each bring a unique background to the residency, Bradshaw said.

Melvin has been a professional artist for nearly 30 years working in drawing, printing, painting, animation, collage and embroidery. She’s also well-known for teaching art in the territory.

Melvin said Sept. 10 it was a rare opportunity to spend three weeks focused on a project around the Yukon River that prompted her to apply for the residency.

The Old Fire Hall is a beautiful space to work, she said, adding the ceiling height gives the building a “true sense of space”.

“It’s such a beautiful space,” she said.

There, she has spread out materials over seven eight-foot tables to produce nearly 400 embroidered Chinook salmon out of a “cross-pollination of textiles” over the three-week period.

The salmon will be displayed along the walls of the exhibit in November, though Melvin is still working on the finer details for how they will be hung. Essentially, she said, they will appear as if you’re looking across the water watching the salmon swim.

She proposed the project after looking at all the Yukon River provides with the salmon being such an integral part of that.

It’s the salmon that feed animals, people and the nearby forests, she said.

“The big circle of life is so apparent.”

Like many Yukoners, Melvin said she’s feeling the stress of climate change and this project has given her a place to put that energy.

Woodland was chosen as the emerging artist, though as Bradshaw pointed out Woodland’s name is already familiar to many Yukoners who have been to the Created At The Canyon exhibit at the Yukon Arts Centre. It features a video Woodland worked on with the Borealis Soul performances group she is part of.

Woodland is also a graduate of the Humber College film and television production program, where she was awarded the 2019 Women in Film Award.

Woodland said in an email that the residency represents a chance to practice and focus on a project in the territory as well as meeting other Yukon artists and having her film and dance work showcased as part of the exhibit.

Her project will feature footage of her growing up in the Yukon compiled into short stories.

She described it as “an ode to the land of the Yukon. I had such a good time growing up on the land here, but climate change is going to really change it for future generations.”

Videos will be projected during the exhibit with Woodland delivering her message that people need to think about how land is used.

She said she hopes those who take in the exhibit come away thinking about their impact on the environment and land, how it’s changing, what the future will look like and what people will do about it.

A well-known Indigenous artist who creates under the name of Zahra, Adamson has taken on a number of roles over the years in the territory, ranging from positions with the Ta’an Kwäch’än Council, as former grand chief of of the Council of Yukon First Nations, positions with Northern Native Broadcasting, Aboriginal People’s Television Network, Northern Vision Development, and Yukon Hospital Corporation among others.

“She’s a pillar in our community,” Bradshaw said.

Adamson uses paints, canvasses, found objects, bones, feathers, glass beads and hides in her artwork, it’s highlighted on the Yukon Art Society webpage.

“By blending Indigenous and contemporary mediums and styles her pieces convey a powerful message of cultural change,” it’s stated.

Finally, curator Leonard has a master of arts in information studies from McGill University and a bachelor of arts in urban studies from Concordia University in addition to studying art history abroad. She currently works as project archivist for the audio recording inventory project at Northern Native Broadcasting.

Bradshaw is hopeful those who have a chance to stop by the open studio hours each artist is offering get “a little peek” into the extensive behind-the-scenes work that goes into artwork, as well as getting a look at themes that emerge along the Yukon River.

Contact Stephanie Waddell at

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A Natural Fit of Music and Art – The New York Times




Collaborations between United States museums and orchestras date to at least 1923, when the Cleveland Orchestra premiered a suite by Douglas Moore inspired by four works in the Cleveland Museum of Art’s collection.

But the partnerships are growing today among institutions of all sizes, as museums and orchestras seek new audiences.

In June, for example, Jazz at Lincoln Center performed a series of concerts called “Portraits of America: A Jazz Story.” A dozen members of the orchestra composed new pieces of music inspired by the works of such artists as Romare Bearden and Stuart Davis in the collection of the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Ark.

Accompanying the musical performances in Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Frederick P. Rose Hall was a digital presentation highlighting each work that inspired a composition. The museum also held a watch party of a live-streamed performance at its home in Arkansas.

Sandy Edwards, deputy director of the museum, called the watch party an “intimate” event and said the compositions “took our collection to a new place, creating an unexpected and provocative way for audiences to engage their senses beyond the visual.”

Some collaborations in the upcoming museum and orchestral seasons will mark important anniversaries, local in one case, national in the other. As Rebecca Salminen Witt, chief development and communications officer of the Detroit Historical Society, pointed out, “significant anniversaries are good markers for what history bears as important, what the public can connect to.”

The Detroit Historical Society and Detroit Symphony Orchestra are jointly celebrating the centennial of the city’s Orchestra Hall, which was designed by the theater architect C. Howard Crane and opened in 1919. Although it served as the home of the orchestra until 1939, from 1941 to 1951 it was renamed the Paradise Theatre and was a jazz concert hall; it then fell into disrepair before being saved in 1970 and restored, becoming the symphony’s home again in 1989.

To celebrate the hall’s 100th anniversary, the society lent a 1920 Dodge Model 30 car, owned by the former symphony vice president Horace Dodge, to the orchestra, which is displaying it for a month in the atrium of the Max M. and Marjorie S. Fisher Music Center, a recent addition to the hall. The society also is creating special exhibitions of music-related memorabilia, including jazz-related items, that will be on display in the center through March, as well as at the Detroit Historical Museum early next year.

The New York Philharmonic is staging an elaborate multiyear initiative starting in February called “Project 19” to mark the centennial of the ratification of the 19th Amendment to the United States Constitution. A key offering will be a newly staged version of Virgil Thomson’s 1947 opera, with libretto by Gertrude Stein, “The Mother of Us All,” which tells the story of Susan B. Anthony, an early suffragist who died before the amendment giving women the right to vote was ratified. Other historical figures involved with the movement — ranging from Daniel Webster to Lillian Russell — are also portrayed. The production will be jointly presented by the orchestra, Juilliard School and Metropolitan Museum of Art in the museum’s Charles Engelhard Court, in its American wing.

Limor Tomer, general manager of the museum’s live arts program, said the museum and orchestra “are on the same page programmatically. We share a commitment to diversifying audiences for contemporary works by living artists.”

Another goal of this collaboration, added Deborah Borda, president and chief executive of the New York Philharmonic, is to attract younger audiences, who she hopes will find the opera “absolutely riveting in terms applicable to today.”

A similar collaboration will take place next spring in Cleveland, when the Cleveland Museum of Art and Cleveland Orchestra, along with the Maltz Museum of Jewish Heritage, Cleveland Institute of Art Cinematheque, Cleveland School of the Arts, Cleveland Public Library and Facing History and Ourselves, an educational nonprofit, will participate in a citywide festival called “Censored: Art & Power.”

The centerpiece of the festival will be three performances in May by the orchestra of the 1935 opera “Lulu,” written by the Austrian composer Alban Berg during the Nazis’ rise to power. Also featuring a program in the museum’s German Expressionist gallery about works made by artists considered “degenerate” by the Nazis, a display of books on this art in the museum’s library, and related concerts and lectures, the festival will “look at the relationship of art and politics in Berg’s lifetime,” said Franz Welser-Möst, the orchestra’s music director.

“Just as the character of Lulu is abused and abusive in her own way, we will look into how music and art can be abused by a system and how a system can turn people on one another. These are important topics, not only from the past but in today’s world,” Mr. Welser-Möst said.

The St. Louis Symphony Orchestra, whose musicians have been performing contemporary chamber music in the Tadao Ando-designed Pulitzer Arts Foundation since 2004, will continue this tradition in the current season. In January, as part of the museum’s Susan Philipsz’ “Seven Tears” exhibition, the orchestra will perform the world premiere of the live version of her “Study for Strings.” It is inspired by a 1943 composition of the same name written in the Theresienstadt concentration camp by Czech composer Pavel Haas and performed in a 1944 Nazi propaganda film about the camp; Haas was killed in Auschwitz in 1944.

Not all collaborations between museums and orchestras involve huge institutions. From January through May next year, the Museum of Fine Arts in St. Petersburg, Fla., will display over 100 set designs and original costumes from the Tobin Collection of Theatre Arts in a traveling exhibition developed by the McNay Art Museum in San Antonio. It will also offer live performances of classical music, opera, dance, theater and poetry, working with the local Florida Orchestra and Detroit-based orchestra Sphinx Virtuosi. Many performances will take place on a custom-built stage in the exhibition’s galleries.

And the Omaha Symphony will continue its ongoing collaboration with the Joslyn Art Museum, presenting concerts whose programs are inspired by works in the museum’s collection. Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice will perform the second movement of Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 20 at a concert in May; its program is inspired by a Frank Stella mixed-media painting, “Nogaro,” named after an automotive racetrack in France.

“On some level, collaborations between museums and orchestras are the most natural thing. After all, all human beings paint, sing, dance, sculpt, draw and make music. Everyone connects with light, color, sound, line, movement, rhythm, texture and so on. It’s our institutions that have compartmentalized and separated the different art forms,” said Jesse Rosen, president and chief executive of the League of American Orchestras.

Music, added Arthur Cohen, chief executive of LaPlaca Cohen, an arts consulting and research firm, can enable museums to offer “new experiences around their collections” and attract new visitors of all ages, from Gen Z to people born before 1945.

He predicted there will be more such collaborations in the future, with art museums “adding new, live performance spaces.”

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Arts workshop to be held in Igloolik in November – Nunatsiaq News




“Drumdancer” was Aija Komangapik’s award-winning entry into the 2019 Indigenous Arts & Stories contest. The Government of Nunavut plans to host an arts workshop, including drum dancing, in Igloolik next month.

Nunavut government is seeking both teachers and participants

By Nunatsiaq News

If you’re interested in participating in Inuit traditional drum dancing, chanting and throat singing, and you’re aged between 18 and 30, you may have the opportunity to participate in an arts workshop to be held in Igloolik next month.

The elders and youth division of the Government of Nunavut’s Department of Culture and Heritage is inviting young people from all 13 Qikiqtaaluk communities who are interested in attending the workshop, which will be held on Nov. 25-29, to get in touch to express their interest, according to a news release.

The elders and youth division is also seeking Inuit Qaujimajatuqangit keepers who are interested in passing down traditional knowledge to young Nunavummiut.

The deadline for applications is Friday, Oct. 25.

For more information, you can contact Leo Tulugarjuk, manager for elders programs at 867-934-2034; or Sancia Irngaut, program officer for elders at 867- 934-2022;

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Greta Thunberg will join Sustainabiliteens at #FridaysforFuture climate strike at Vancouver Art Gallery –




Expect throngs of young and old climate activists to converge on downtown Vancouver on Friday (October 25).

They’ll converge on the north side of the Vancouver Art Gallery to listen to a speech by their 16-year-old Swedish hero, Greta Thunberg, who will be making her first visit to the city.

The event will run from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Thunberg attracted a crowd of 10,000 to 12,000 when she spoke recently in Edmonton.

When she spoke at the UN Climate Action Summit in New York City in September, Thunberg emphasized the importance of keeping the global average temperature rise since the start of the Industrial Revolution to below 1.5 C.

“The popular idea of cutting our emissions in half in 10 years only gives us a 50 percent chance of staying below 1.5 degrees [Celsius] at the risk of setting off irreversible chain reactions beyond human control,” Thunberg told world leaders at the summit. “Fifty percent may be acceptable to you, but those numbers do not include tipping points, most feedback loops, additional warming hidden by toxic air pollution, or the aspects of equity and climate justice.

“They also rely on my generation sucking hundreds of billions of tonnes of your CO2 out of the air with technologies that barely exist. So a 50 percent risk is simply not acceptable to us—we who have to live with the consequences,” she continued. “To have a 67 percent chance of staying below a 1.5-degrees global temperature rise—the best odds given by the IPCC—the world had 420 gigatonnes of CO2 left to emit back on January 1, 2018.

“Today, that figure is already down to less than 350 gigatonnes. How dare you pretend that this can be solved with just business as usual and some technical solutions? With today’s emissions levels, that remaining CO2 budgets will be entirely gone within less than eight-and-a-half years.”

Thunberg’s event in Vancouver will be hosted by the teen-climate group Sustainabiliteens Vancouver.

Last year, the north plaza of the Vancouver Art Gallery was renamed šxʷƛ̓ənəq Xwtl’e7énḵ Square in honour of the region’s Indigenous heritage.

The name incorporates languages of all three Indigenous peoples in the region—the Musqueam, Tsleil-Waututh, and Squamish.

Video of Say it with us! šxʷƛ̓ənəq Xwtl’e7énḵ Square

This City of Vancouver video explains how to pronounce the name of  šxʷƛ̓ənəq Xwtl’e7énk Square.


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