The City of Prince Albert is launching a public art tour to not only embrace the murals and sculptures already on display, but also to encourage more in the future.
The new Public Art & Heritage in the Heart of Prince Albert brochure walks local residents and tourists through 10 different installations across the city. The tours are primarily self-guided, but you can reach out in advance to arrange a guided tour by former Mann Art Gallery Director/Curator Jesse Campbell.
“The beauty about public art is it’s accessible to all,” said the City’s Arts and Culture Coordinator Judy MacLeod Campbell.
“Everyone has the opportunity to view the art and everyone sees the art differently. I think it’s a way to explore a theme, to explore perhaps an issue sometimes, to learn more about that particular artist.”
Not all of Prince Albert’s public art is included in the tour. It’s focused on the two core areas of the city: Downtown and the Kinsmen Park area.
In the Kinsmen Park area, for example, you’ll find the 2019 mural ‘Summer’s Breeze’ by Jayde Goodon. He’s a Saskatoon-based Métis artist who paints under the name WizWon.
The mural is located at the Kinsmen Water Park along First Avenue West. The piece is of the profile view of woman in front of various designs, including a splash of blue representing water.
The Leo Lachance Memorial is located at the provincial court on 11th Street West. The sculpture was completed in 2001 by Lloyd Pinay. It not only honours Lachance––who was shot and killed by Carney Nerland in Prince Albert in 1991––but also depicts the relationship between Indigenous people and nature.
MacLeod Campbell said the City wanted to start a public art tour for both local residents and tourists. Tourism may be currently lacking because of COVID-19, but she said they’ll likely continue guided tours every spring, summer and early fall.
“For local people, I don’t think we’re always aware of the different public art that we have,” she said.
“And I think with that awareness, we always want to add more. So whether that’s city-led or led by a non-profit arts organization or a business or a new development area that wants to add public art, it certainly enhances and beautifies the city.”
The brochure also lists the city’s art galleries and local restaurants that display artwork, such as the Bison Café and Amy’s on Second. You can view the brochure on the City of Prince Albert’s website.
The idea originated from the Municipal Cultural Action Plan, which includes the Prince Albert Historical Society. It started hosting walking tours from tourist requests.
MacLeod Campbell said that’s one of the initiatives that inspired a public art tour. She’s also gone on public art tours in other communities, such as Saskatoon, and wanted to offer it in Prince Albert.
To arrange a guided tour, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
How the arts might help us grapple with climate change – CBC.ca
When Omar El Akkad wrote his 2017 dystopian novel American War, about a second U.S. civil war after land loss due to climate change, he considered it a “deliberately grotesque” view of a possible future on a degraded planet.
But just three years later, the Egyptian-Canadian author says his climate fiction — or “cli-fi,” as the genre is sometimes called — doesn’t seem so fictional anymore.
“The world that I’m describing is not as far away from the real world as it was when I started writing this book,” he said in an interview with Laura Lynch, host of CBC Radio’s What on Earth.
While it’s hard to know what effect any one work has on the audience, creators — from authors to filmmakers to visual artists — are making a case for their role in tackling climate change: to engage people’s emotions and imagination in ways that straight data just won’t.
“Film … has the capacity to move people in a number of ways simultaneously … intellectually, emotionally, viscerally, all at the same time,” said filmmaker Jennifer Baichwal in an interview with Lynch.
“Using that medium to open up that consciousness, to move people in that way is our goal. Whether it works or not is another matter.”
- Listen to What on Earth on CBC Radio 1 every Sunday at 10:30 a.m., 11 a.m. in Newfoundland
Art has ‘a fundamental role’
There’s a lot we don’t know about what kind of communication truly engages people to take action on climate change, and it’s unlikely to be one-size-fits-all.
But one approach that researchers have repeatedly shown doesn’t work is the so-called deficit model or the idea that people will change their behaviour related to some problem — say, the effects of smoking — if only they had more information about it.
Values, beliefs and emotional context are all key, said Diego Galafassi, a Stockholm-based visual artist and sustainability scientist who has studied the use of art in moving people to adopt more environmentally sustainable practices.
“A lot of our actions and behaviours derive from this imaginary dimension of our existence,” he said. “This is where the arts play a really fundamental role.”
Last year, Galafassi did a residency in Montreal where he worked on a “mixed-reality experience” called Breathe. Combining performance and augmented reality, this immersive project set out to convey how human breath is connected to the broader living world, as a way of showing how dependent we are on the environment.
The challenges associated with climate change “are of such a magnitude that we cannot approach them only as technical problems, as something we could fix only by changing some policies,” said Galafassi.
He said art can be a powerful way to convey the complexity of the problem and “close the gap between what we know and what we actually do about climate change.”
‘It’s very hard’
There is not much data about the ability of art to change people’s behaviour, but those who have looked into it say that art — no matter how profound — has its limits when it comes to persuasion on this topic.
While art can be a catalyst for change, it’s not guaranteed, said Laura Sommer, a Norway-based researcher who has studied how art can change attitudes about climate change.
“It’s very hard … generally for artists to create something that connects with people and is really changing something. It’s not that every artwork can do it.”
In 2015, Sommer was part of a research team that tried to pinpoint what kind of art would spur people to change their behaviour.
They studied reactions to 37 artworks in a climate art festival that ran alongside COP21, the international climate conference that eventually led to the Paris Accord, in which countries agreed on steps that would limit global warming this century to 1.5 C above pre-industrial levels.
The team then had nearly 900 spectators respond to a questionnaire on their perception of the works, which was summarized in a study co-authored by Sommer and published in 2019.
Reactions to what Sommer called “activist art” clustered into different themes: “the comforting utopia,” “the challenging dystopia,” “the mediocre mythology” and “awesome solutions.”
What the researchers found was that only three of the 37 works — the ones grouped under “awesome solutions” — were rated as effective in motivating behaviour change.
This included an installation that looked like a wall full of flowers, “but when you got closer, you could see it was plastic lids that were upcycled and turned into something beautiful,” said Sommer.
Another was an installation on the Seine River depicting a blue whale, where people could walk into its belly and read about biodiversity loss.
“It was, on the one hand, showing something exciting and amazing about nature but also showing the human effect on nature [and] showing what could be done,” said Sommer.
The solution problem
But that leads to a fundamental question: Is art’s role to provide answers?
One of the most prominent works about climate change in recent years is Anthropocene, a collaboration between photographer Edward Burtynsky and filmmakers Jennifer Baichwal and Nicholas de Pencier.
The film and photo exhibition vividly captures how we have exploited sites around the world — from the Great Barrier Reef off Australia to potash mines in Russia — to fuel our consumer-oriented lifestyles.
The work is epic and visually stunning, but Baichwal said “there was criticism that [Anthropocene] wasn’t strident enough about what people should do.”
WATCH | Anthropocene explores humans’ impact on the planet:
Baichwal acknowledged that with any environmental art, “there’s a danger … that people won’t take away what you want them to take away.”
In the case of Anthropocene, “all we want is an opening up of consciousness about the fact that these places of extraction and waste that exist all over the world are directly related to our everyday lives.”
Galafassi said that art is not really meant to provide all the answers, which is why it cannot be a panacea for the problem of communicating the severity of climate change.
Art is “a space where we can ask these very difficult questions and explore things in a more open-ended way and not be committed to solutions,” he said.
“The artistic process has its own way to get to questions and perhaps new questions, deeper questions. It’s really a way to grapple with the complexity of these issues that we have.”
El Akkad says climate change and related issues are so encompassing, art dealing with them will cease to be a genre.
“If you are in a creative endeavour, if you are in the business of trying to describe the messiness of human life, you are not going to be able to ignore that aspect of it,” he said.
“This is going to impact everything.”
With files from Lisa Johnson
Listen to What on Earth on CBC Radio 1 every Sunday at 10:30 a.m., 11 a.m. in Newfoundland.
You can also subscribe to What on Earth on Apple Podcasts, Google Play or wherever you get your podcasts. You can also listen anytime on CBC Listen.
Arts Society King encourages artists to submit work to original art challenge – yorkregion.com
The people behind Arts Society King wanted to get people engaged with art despite a worldwide pandemic.
That’s where the original art challenge came to fruition.
“When the coronavirus came along and everything started getting shut down, I sort of said to the board of directors, ‘We should do some sort of art challenge,’” said Michele McNally, vice president of Arts Society King.
McNally was inspired by the rainbows children had made and put in their windows as a way to lift spirits during the pandemic.
“I thought, ‘The kids are doing all this artwork, why doesn’t Arts Society King put out there that we’re going to have an original art challenge?’ And it doesn’t just have to be paintings. It can be poetry, it can be TikTok videos, writing short stories, whatever you like,” she said.
The response from the artist community in King has been amazing, McNally said.
A special Facebook page was made for the challenge where the art is posted.
The challenge has garnered about 40 submissions through Facebook or Instagram by tagging Arts_Society_King.
McNally said she was hoping more youth and children would participate in the challenge, but that hasn’t been the case.
There isn’t a prize to be won because McNally didn’t want to make it a contest with an end date.
“I decided not to make it like a contest with a prize at the end with a deadline and hopefully it would just perpetuate itself,” McNally said.
Established artist Bill Lunshof decided to participate in the challenge as a way to express his passion for painting.
“I just thought it would be fun to post and see what happens,” Lunshof said.
Lunshof is a longtime member of Arts Society King who has been painting on and off for about 10 years and has been doing it full time for the last four years.
Lunshof uses oil paints as his medium. He paints in a style he calls “looser.”
“I’m trying to paint in more of a plein air style where somebody paints outside and paints quickly. I’m trying to loosen up my style a little bit and get away from all the detail,” he said.
Lunshof paints every day and his style has progressed naturally.
“I think (painting) is just my passion. It’s how I express myself,” he said.
Arts Society King is a volunteer-run not-for-profit that promotes, celebrates and advocates for art in King Township.
STORY BEHIND THE STORY: Reporter Laura Broadley noticed social media posts from artists in King and wanted to find out what it was all about.
U’mista Cultural Centre will host a native art contest to raise funds for artists
U’mista Cultural Centre has called on the artists of Kwakwa̱ka̱’wakw descent to participate in a native art contest to be held on August 28.
Indigenous artists have been economically affected due to COVID-19 slowing down business and tourism said Joseph Isaac, U’mista Cultural Centre’s business manager.
The contest is a fun way for people to engage with arts and raise funds, said Isaac.
The contest is open for children and adults and two winners will be selected from each of the three categories. Winners will also receive cash prizes ranging from $250- $1000. The artwork design produced will be used for the logo of U’mista’s merchandise.
The theme for the contest is ‘resilience.’
“Our people are extraordinary stories of resilience,” said Isaac and added that First Nation communities have historically been resilient through pandemics and residential schools.
The society is also planning to host an art exhibition, featuring works of Kwakwa̱ka̱’wakw artists from across the region.
“We’re going to be reaching out to our community to participate in the exhibition,” said Isaac. The exhibition will be held at the U’mista cultural centre in Alert Bay.
The exhibition will also mark the 40th anniversary of the U’mista Cultural Centre.
U’mista Cultural Centre is one of the longest-operating and most successful First Nations cultural facilities in BC, founded in 1980 as a ground breaking project to house potlatch artifacts which had been seized by government during an earlier period of cultural repression.
‘U’mista’ which also means ‘the return of something important’ operates a museum and cultural education facility in Alert Bay.
Source:- Campbell River Mirror
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