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New frontiers for art: The Montreal International Poetry Prize – McGill Reporter

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In an age marked by global quarantines and climate change, what forms of art and creative expression are possible? How can creative communities survive without the face-to-face contact of public events and audiences? What can literature, and particularly poetry, often imagined as a solitary exercise, offer our world today?

The Montreal International Poetry Prize hopes to answer at least some of these questions.

The Prize, a biennial competition founded in 2010 on donations from Montreal poets including McGill alumni Leonard Cohen and Prize co-founder Asa Boxer, has recently migrated to its new home within McGill’s Department of English. Its primary goal is to encourage the creation of anglophone poetry worldwide. The Prize awards $20,000 CAD to a single poet for one poem of 40 or fewer lines. The deadline for submission is June 1.

A jury of internationally acclaimed poets and critics from around the world will select a shortlist of 50 poems, from which this year’s judge, distinguished American poet Yusef Komunyakaa, will select a winner. This year’s jurors hail from Canada, Australia, the U.S., the UK, Haiti, and India. The fifty poems on the shortlist will appear in the Global Poetry Anthology, published by Véhicule Press in Montreal.

Opening new digital frontiers for poetry and artistic connection in a time of crisis and isolation, the nonprofit Prize engages in and endorses the formation of a new global arts community. “By accepting entries through an online application, organizing open-access poetry readings via Zoom, and publishing a global anthology (online and in print), the Prize is reimagining poetry in a digital space,” says Michael Nicholson, Assistant Professor in the Department of English.

Nicholson and English Department colleagues Miranda Hickman and Eli MacLaren have overseen the migration of the Prize to the Department of English.

Supporting the transfer has been Poetry Matters, an initiative in the English Department founded in 2017 by Hickman and Nicholson. Poetry Matters seeks to foster conversation, research and exchange on poetry among members of different communities, within the university and beyond.

Poetry beyond the classroom

Organizers hope that the Prize will encourage people to think of poetry as an art form beyond what we engage in the classroom. “Poetry starts at the beginning of our lives, as in children’s books… It doesn’t always have to be T.S. Eliot,” says MacLaren, chair of the 2020 Prize. “Poetry is everywhere. It’s a part of weddings, meditating, religious ceremonies.”

“Back in the 1970s, Louis Dudek was part of an effort to get poetry on the busses in Montreal, in English and in French,” says Hickman. “Working on the Prize has made us think about all the ways poetry enters our daily lives – as well as how it offers ways of knowing and commenting on the world in which we live.”

Organizers also hope that the Prize will foster a sense of community of writers from around the world.

Celebrated Irish poet Seamus Heaney’s once said that literary prizes can provide “a sense of solidarity with the poetry guild, as it were, sustenance coming from the assent of your peers,” the Montreal Prize’s cash award is crowd funded from entry fees. As Gavin Currie, a McGill PhD student co-directing public relations, put it, the Prize’s funding model is “poet to poet;” winners receive sufficient financial support from their peers to write verse for a year.

When submitting their work, entrants are also offered the opportunity to sponsor an entry – the chance to support the emergence of new styles and forms of creative expression from around the globe. 

Attracting brilliance in all its diversity

The Prize, say organizers, is an enterprise that advances social justice, student training in arts entrepreneurship, and a global rather than local or national concept of poetry and aesthetics. In keeping with McGill’s international reputation and stated commitment to “attract brilliance in all its diversity,” the Prize’s digital application promotes a civic-minded poetry competition by means of an anonymous submission process.

“For many, entering the Prize in itself is not only an experiment in community building and altruism in the arts, but also an endorsement of a digital poetry network collectively working to disregard the limits of status, border, and stratification so often constraining major national prizes in the arts,” says Nicholson.

The deadline for submissions to the Montreal International Poetry Prize has been extended to June 1. Get more information online

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Kelowna Art Gallery offers free admission for June – Kelowna Capital News – Kelowna Capital News

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You can now cruise the halls of Kelowna’s Art Gallery for free for the month of June.

On June 2, all four exhibition spaces reopened for visitors to enjoy. In celebration, the gallery decided to offer free administration to everyone this month.

“I am delighted that our professional team worked together to reopen the Kelowna Art Gallery to the public as quickly and as safely as possible,” said Nataley Nagy, executive director at the Gallery.

“During these trying times, we know that art and creativity are a welcome respite for all of our residents.”

READ MORE: Youth filmmakers tackle technology addiction, relationships, cyber-bullying

Visitors will notice additional signage as well as reduced capacity due to COVID-19 concerns.

The Gallery has also made a few changes to its hours of operation. The Gallery is now open Tuesday and Thursdays, from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.; and Wednesday and Fridays, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The first hour, 10 a.m. to 11 a.m., has been set aside for seniors and for those who may have health concerns.

For more information about the exhibitions on view and to find out “what to know before your visit”, please see www.kelownaartgallery.com.

The Kelowna Art Gallery is located at 1315 Water Street in the heart of the Cultural District in downtown Kelowna, BC.

READ MORE: Okanagan-shot film “The Color Rose” wins two cinematography awards


Daniel Taylor
Reporter, Kelowna Capital News
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National drive-by art show rolls in Victoria on Saturday – Victoria News

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A drive-by art exhibition, planned in select cities across the United States, Mexico and Canada, is happening in Victoria on Saturday.

On June 6, artists taking part in The National Arts Drive will be displaying, performing or showcasing their creativity from driveways, balconies, windows, stoops and front lawns during a three-hour period.

READ ALSO: COVID-19 birthday drive-by celebrations snuffed out in Island community

Spectators are encouraged to drive the city blocks to see, hear and support the artists, performers, musicians and designers who live in their communities.

The driving experience is paired with a website and an interactive map where spectators can engage with the artist and support them through three main avenues: like, follow and share their work through social media, donate directly to the artists and visit their online store or website for a future purchase.

READ ALSO: Ninja groups could be setting children up for identity theft, online safety expert says

There is no charge for artists wishing to participate in the event, which was created by RAW – the world’s largest independent arts organization.

According to RAW, 95 per cent of artists have lost income as a result of the COVID-19 shutdown and 64 per cent of artists have become unemployed due to the pandemic.

For more information visit nationalartsdrive.com.

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Art market leaders host charity auction in support of Canadian food banks – Canada NewsWire

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The charity auction will take place on Heffel’s Online Auction Partnerships (HO2) platform from June 9 – 23, 2020, and will include 28 works donated by Nicholas Metivier Gallery and a group of well-known artists including Edward Burtynsky, Bobbie Burgers, John Hartman and others. According to presale estimates for the works, the auction is expected to raise between $170,000 and $230,000 to benefit the charities.

“Like many Canadians, we are proud to step up to help those in need during this critical time,” said David Heffel, President of Heffel Fine Art Auction House. “We’re so thankful for the generosity of the Nicholas Metivier Gallery, the RBC Foundation and the artists who have donated their energy and creativity for this important cause, and are eager to get these much-needed funds to food banks in our communities.”

“Canadian food banks are in desperate need of assistance to help those most vulnerable as a result of COVID-19, and demand has grown exponentially in recent months,” said Nicholas Metivier, Founder and Owner of Nicholas Metivier Gallery. “When we suggested the idea of an auction to support food banks, our artists responded with tremendous generosity and enthusiasm. We are also pleased to partner with Heffel and utilize their online auction platform to execute this important initiative.”

To give interested buyers an opportunity to view the available works, the auction catalogue and virtual auction previews will be available on Heffel’s website. Works will also be available for preview by appointment at Nicholas Metivier Gallery (190 Richmond St E, Toronto, ON).

For additional auction details, and to access the online catalogue, please visit www.heffel.com. The catalogue will be available on June 9, 2020.

About Heffel Fine Art Auction House

Heffel has sold more Canadian art than any other auctioneer worldwide, with sales totaling more than half a billion dollars since 1978. With offices in Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal, Ottawa and Calgary, Heffel has the most experienced team of fine art specialists in Canada and provides superior client service to both sellers and buyers internationally.

About Nicholas Metivier Gallery

The Nicholas Metivier Gallery, founded in 2004, is one of the largest contemporary galleries in Canada. The gallery represents and promotes Canadian and international artists that demonstrate exceptional quality and originality in all media, with a focus on contemporary painting and photography. 

SOURCE Heffel Fine Art Auction House

For further information: For additional information, to schedule an interview or media viewing, or for high-resolution images, please contact: Rebecca Rykiss, Heffel Fine Art Auction House, [email protected], 416-961-6505 ext. 323

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www.heffel.com

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