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  • On a Summer Trip

    Knight, Derek; Parayre, Catherine; Serfas, Shawn (2022-12-19)
    Someone dies. Three friends meet; one travels from the West, another comes back to Canada, the third one welcomes them in his garden.
  • Cloud

    Szőke, Donna (small walker press, 2022)
    “Cloud” (10 Oct. 2015–17 Jan. 2016) and “Satellite” (19 Oct.–28 Nov. 2015) were two parallel exhibitions by artist Donna Szőke, held respectively at Rodman Hall Art Centre and, on the other bank of Twelve Mile Creek, at the Art Gallery of the Marilyn I. Walker School of Fine and Performing Arts, Brock University. Curated by Stuart Reid, they echoed each other, but were also conceived as two independent projects. The present catalogue focuses on “Cloud,” an exhibition whose apparent simplicity or incongruity elicits an adroit treatment of complex facts. Includes essays by Stuart Reid and Emily Rosamond. Edited by Catherine Parayre.
  • Rethinking property in c\a\n\a\d\a

    Blackwell, Adrian; Devine, Bonnie; Kaewan Dang, Tiffany; Fortin, David; reid stewart, luugigyoo patrick (Small Walker Press and Salon für Kunstbuch, 2021-11-10)
    Indigenous and settler architects and urbanists reimagine Canadian cities and discuss property division as the hinge between settler colonialism and architecture/urban form. The conversation is informed by the issue 12-13 of the journal Scapegoat: Architecture / Landscape / Political Economy titled c\a\n\a\d\a: delineating nation state capitalism edited by David Fortin and Adrian Blackwell. Rethinking property in c\a\n\a\d\a transcribes a virtual round table conversation co-hosted by the Research Centre in Interdisciplinary Arts and Creative Culture (Centre for Studies in Arts and Culture, Marilyn I. Walker School of Fine and Performing Arts, Brock University) and the Salon für Kunstbuch (Vienna, Austria) on 10 November 2021.
  • Ephemeral Heritage: Boats, Migration, and the Central Mediterranean Passage

    Greene, Elizabeth S.; Leidwanger, Justin; Repola, Leopoldo (The University of Chicago Press, 2022)
    The central Mediterranean today marks one of the most active and dangerous routes for sea crossings to Europe, due in no small part to border regimes designed to prevent the mobilities that have defined these waters from earliest antiquity. This article considers initial results of fieldwork undertaken to document and make visible the material culture of contemporary vessels used to carry forced and undocumented migrants to southeast Sicily over the past decade. These former fishing craft reveal structural and spatial adaptations to facilitate a different traffic, reflected also in items left behind when the boats were intercepted. Archaeology helps to embed these journeys within long-term frameworks of connectivity and to situate their ephemeral traces alongside more traditional notions of Mediterranean maritime heritage. In a region that celebrates its deep connections to the sea, care for the materiality of these contemporary mobilities foregrounds human experiences, while serving goals of advocacy, empowerment, and social justice amid global change.
  • Engaging with Digital Texts/Images in Literatures and the Arts

    Colella, Carmela; El-Hoss, Tamara; Parayre, Catherine (small walker press, 2021)
    Les nouveaux outils numériques continuent de transformer la pensée des artistes et auteur.es, ainsi que leur façon de s’engager dans la création. Au cours des dernières décennies, les avancées technologiques ont permis de concevoir et de développer de nouvelles pratiques en littérature et dans les arts, avec pour résultat d’innombrables créations innovantes. Les outils numériques rendent possible un meilleur accès aux textes littéraires et facilitent des interactions complexes entre la littérature et les autres arts. De même, les arts visuels et autres ont conçu de nouvelles intégrations du texte dans leurs réalisations. Ces nouvelles pratiques ont changé notre discours visuel et textuel. New digital tools continue to transform the way artists and writers think about, engage with, and create works. In the last decades, advances in technology have facilitated the design and writing process, allowing the creation of countless virtual renditions of concepts or works. Digital tools have impacted the traditional literary world, opening access to a variety of digitized texts and enabling increased interactions with other art forms. In turn, visual and other creative arts have conceived new integrations of text within their medium, all of which has impacted and changed our visual and written discourse.
  • Episode 11: On Disability

    Steer, Linda (2021-10-29)
    Episode 11: On Disability This episode of Unboxing the Canon introduces the topic of disability and the visual arts, looking at both historical and contemporary examples. We consider the near absence of visible disability in the history of Western art and discuss how some contemporary artists are representing disability in powerful ways. Beginning with Diego Velázquez’s 1656 painting Las Meninas, this episode examines it and other historical works through the ideas of contemporary artist, writer and disability activist, Riva Lehrer. Then we turn towards the work of Persimmon Blackbridge, a Canadian artist whose work touches on disability, institutionalization, censorship, and queer identity. We demystify the artist-genius myth and end with a brief discussion about how curatorial choices can make art more accessible.
  • Episode 10: Thinking and Rethinking Orientalism

    2021-09-17
    In this episode, called “Thinking and Rethinking Orientalism,” we examine Orientalism as a particular version of the Western gaze that influenced many 19th century European painters. The Western or European gaze treats non-Western subjects as different and inferior, but also as exotic, mysterious, or enticing. After examining the orientalist visual tropes in paintings by Gérôme and Delacroix, we turn towards contemporary artists. Moroccan photographer Lalla Essaydi creates meaningful portraits of Muslim women that challenge perceptions of Arab female identity. Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian was an Iranian artist whose works combine Eastern and Western influences into a unique sculptural style. We take a look at her series Fourth Family.
  • Episode 9: Portraits of Rulers

    Steer, Linda (2021-05-20)
    In this episode, “Portraits of Rulers,” I take a look at the history of portraits of rulers in the canon of Western art and examine how portraits engage with structures of power. Beginning with French and English royalty in the 17th and 18th century, I end with a visual analysis of Kehinde Wiley’s portrait of former American President Barack Obama. Focusing on these rulers allows us to see how European portrait conventions use a number of visual cues, from clothing, pose, setting, and the objects included within the painting, to convey wealth, power and the right to rule. Examining a portrait of late 17th-century Queen Marie Antoinette allows us to see gender differences in royal portraiture. Looking closely at Obama’s portrait reveals the ways in which Wiley both adopted and refined European portrait conventions in a way that makes his portrait stand out among portraits of other American presidents.
  • Oral history and the epistemology of testimony

    Kenyon, Tim (Routledge (Taylor and Francis), 2016)
    Social epistemology has paid little attention to oral historiography as a source of expert insight into the credibility of testimony. One extant suggestion, however, is that oral historians treat testimony with a default trust reflecting a standing warrant for accepting testimony. The view that there is such a standing warrant is sometimes known as the Acceptance Principle for Testimony (APT). I argue that the practices of oral historians do not count in support of APT, all in all. Experts have commonly described oral traditions as oriented towards political, cultural and entertainment ends, and not only—or not even—towards an accurate depiction of past events. Even when accuracy is the emphasis, many historians of oral tradition do not trust such testimony as APT would suggest; the importance of gathering supporting evidence is a consistent emphasis. Yet oral historiography, both of traditions and more generally, does hold out lessons for the epistemology of testimony, implicating a wider range of social and contextual factors than the philosophical literature might otherwise reflect. Perhaps most importantly, it confirms the critical epistemological role of the audience in interpreting testimony and actively constructing testimonial contexts, a point that extends quite naturally to common testimonial exchanges.
  • Media Art Other Episode 5

    Ouellette, Troy (2021-07-28)
    In this episode, Professor Cook will speak about some of her curatorial projects and focus on the work of Alexandra Daisy Ginsberg. For those who do not know Alexandra Daisy Ginsberg's work, it's important to note that this particular artist is at the forefront of creating artistic projects that work in conjunction with artificial intelligence --- she examines subjects as wide-ranging as machine learning, synthetic and evolutionary biology and ecology. She challenges notions of progress and extends the envelope of media art beyond what we would generally associate it with. These include: the sub-genres of VR and Augmented Reality, Sensory Art, Robotics, Sound Art and Bio Art – to name a few.
  • Media Art Other - Episode 4

    2021-07-12
    Anderson Wilson Projects is comprised of Curator, Shannon Anderson and Design Professor, Jay Wilson. In this podcast they speak about their collaborative curatorial process, the artists they have worked with, and talk about their digital web-work produced through the pandemic.
  • Media Art Other - Episode 3

    Ouellette, Troy (2021-06-09)
    In this third episode, I am pleased to present Sound Artist and Researcher Kevin Curtis-Norcross. Over the course of his career, he has captured forest ecologies in 18 countries over the past 40 years. From Sweden to central and South America and across Canada, Kevin has documented various ecosystems that draw our attention to the real wonders of the world - those being the life forces of insects, animals and plants that populate and continue to negotiate the changing biodiversity in the Anthropocene. Kevin’s recordings are usually done in an acoustically uncontrolled environment (traditionally called the “field”) hence field recording, which presents various challenges even to professional sound artists. In the work of Kevin Curtis-Norcross we get a glimpse of how biodiverse our planet really is because we are following the narrative of the species that make up our surroundings. His acoustic ecology recordings also act as a record of the vanishing sonic environments that have flourished over millennia to be captured in the here and now.
  • Media Art Other - Episode 2

    Ouellette, Troy (2021-06-03)
    In this second episode, I present Curator, Dr. Corinna Ghaznavi. Dr. Corinna Ghaznavi, is an independent curator and freelance writer. Since 1997 she has curated exhibitions across Canada. Her writing has been published in Canadian and European art magazines as well as in numerous exhibition catalogues. In 2011 she completed her PhD, which focused on the question of the animal in contemporary art.
  • Media Art Other - Episode 1

    2021-06-02
    In this first episode, I present Artist and Researcher David Bobier. David has worked in the field of disability art for decades. As a hard-of-hearing and (dis)abled media artist, his creative practice is centred on researching and expanding vibrotactile technology as a creative medium. In 2014 he founded VibraFusion Lab (now renamed Vibrafusion Lab Collective - VFLC) that aims to provide access to inclusive technologies for supporting greater accessibility in the arts. In this podcast, David speaks about his own experiences with (dis)abilities and foregrounds some of the organizations and people he has worked with along the way.
  • The Marzamemi Maritime Heritage Project: from the seabed to the museum and beyond

    Leidwanger, Justin; Greene, Elizabeth S.; Repola, Leopoldo; Sgroi, Farbizio (2021)
    The Marzamemi Maritime Heritage Project is a collaborative excavation, survey and heritage management initiative along south-east Sicily focusing on long-term structures of human interaction from prehistory through classical antiquity and up to the present. Situated between west and east, south and north, this corner of the island provides a vantage point for varied material manifestations of connectivity across millennia. Between 2013 and 2019, the project launched new investigations of the 6th-century AD Marzamemi 2 wreck (also known as the ‘church wreck’), which was originally explored by Gerhard Kapitän in the 1960s. The vessel sank while carrying perhaps 100 tonnes of prefabricated architectural elements – column shafts, capitals, bases and other decorative furnishings – in part intended to decorate a church. The project simultaneously aims to re-embed this and other local maritime heritage within the broader context of countless journeys along this shore. Through survey of historic maritime material culture alongside innovative museum development and immersive exhibits, we juxtapose ancient ships with still older and more recent heritage at the heart of this ‘Middle Sea’. In doing so, we aim to broaden 21st-century maritime archaeology in a way that leverages the past for new and challenging engagement with contemporary mobility and human connectivity.
  • unboxing the canon - Episode 8: Appropriation and Copying

    Steer, Linda (2020-11-25)
    In this episode, “Appropriation & Copying,” I take a look at the ways in which artists refer to the work of their predecessors through copying and appropriation. Art instruction uses copying as a method to learn. In addition, artists refer to their predecessors in a myriad of ways by quoting or remaking existing works of art. We can think of the history of Western art as a conversation between works of art, past and present. Appropriation differs. Appropriation art takes a known work of art and uses it in a way that reveals something about the original, but also creates a new work of art. Sometimes the differences between the original and the new work of art are theoretical, yet not visible. As a form of cultural critique, appropriation can reveal sublimated meanings in a work of art, political meanings, or socio-cultural meanings. While the verb “appropriate” has various meanings, in this episode, to appropriate means taking a work of art and re-making it in a way that reveals the original’s meaning and simultaneously creates new meanings for the appropriation. This episode will briefly consider the modern work of Manet and Duchamp before turning towards contemporary art by Kehinde Wiley, Kara Walker, and Yasumasa Morimura, all of which appropriate the content or forms (or both) of the canon of Western art.
  • unboxing the canon - Episode 7: Musing on Museums

    Steer, Linda (2020-11-04)
    This episode, called “Musing on Museums,” takes a look at the history of the modern Western museum and considers what stories museums tell and how. From wunderkammern and other private collections to the British Museum and the Louvre, museums are intimately connected to power. Contemporary artists Fred Wilson, Spring Hurlbut, and James Luna reveal the hidden histories of collecting and collections and ask us to think about what is collected and how those collections are organized. By troubling organization systems, contemporary artists uncover new ways of finding meaning in museum collections.
  • unboxing the canon - Episode 6: Light and Luxe

    Steer, Linda (2020-10-21)
    In this episode, called “Light and Luxe,” we take a look at the connections between Dutch painting, trade, and luxury during the so-called “Dutch Golden Age” of painting. We will focus on post-1650 genre painting as well as a new form of still life painting called Pronkstilleven (loosely translated as “ostentatious” or “sumptuous” still life) that emerged around the mid-17th century. Artists covered include Vermeer, Gerard ter Borch, and Willem Kalf.
  • unboxing the canon - Episode 5: Taken from the Headlines

    Steer, Linda (2020-10-07)
    “Taken from the Headlines” considers European history painting, its roots and its legacies. What exactly are history paintings? And why are they significant in the canon of Western art? In this episode of “Unboxing the Canon” Dr. Steer examines these questions along with some historical examples before turning to the present moment to consider how artists use this genre today and reflect on some of its limitations. This episode covers the concept of istoria and Renaissance narrative paintings, dramatic 19th century history paintings in France and their relationship to politics, and contemporary Indigenous work dealing with the trauma of the residential school system in Canada.
  • unboxing the canon - Episode 4: Swallowed Whole

    Steer, Linda (2020-09-30)
    In this episode, called “Swallowed Whole,” Dr. Steer considers Gothic cathedrals as an art form and examines their relationship to European power structures. The episode begins with the earliest Christian art, in the catacombs of Rome, and ends with a brief consideration of the role and function of Western European churches today. This episode also covers the important role of relics in Medieval Christianity, the rise of pilgrimage culture in Europe and its connections to economics and architectural innovation, as well as the affective impact of the interior spaces of cathedrals.

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