studiOCanada  "Creations"

studiOCanada is intended to provoke conversation through art. Inspired by the Project "Learning to Love You More" by social artists Miranda July and Harrell Fletcher (2002-2009), this is our version, only it's more like, "Canada ... Can We Learn to Love you More?"  Between January & July (2017), weekly invitations for "creations" will be posted here for you to entertain & submit.

Everyone is invited to participate. All we ask is that you read and agree to the terms of the project, which you will be asked to consent to at the time of your submission. Entries will be featured on our website (as an on-line archive) & select entries will be featured with/in the faculty of education at UBC in various pop-up shows throughout the year.

CREATION #1: Canada … Learning to Love you more!

What is the meaning of love? Love is difficult to define. How do you avoid confusing it with infatuation or lust ... or even like? Many philosophers and psychologists have attempted to define love, at least how it differs from other terms…

Prompt: Make a simple list about what you love about Canada.

It can be as long or short as you like. Please don't list what you dislike, or what you like (like is a luke-warm bath on a cold day, when all you really want is HOT water to warm your soul) – list only what you LOVE about Canada.

Documentation: Send us your list as a text in the body of a message here.

        See Submissions

CREATION #2: Post Cards Canada

Inspired by artist Basil AlZeri's, The Post Card Project, this creation centers on the Canadian landscape through the use of national postcards. The postcard, as a tourist and postal document, is often used as a reminder of what Canada is “supposed” to look like.

Prompt: Using a found (or made) postcard, recreate this photo (by artist Basil AlZeri) in a place of your choosing. Hint: You may want to play with the contrast between the postcard and the background/landscape.

Documentation: Send us your photo as a .jpg attachment here.

Be sure to include the location where your photo was taken.


        See Submissions

CREATION #3: Hybrid Canada

Many Canadians today identify as being, or having mixed heritage. Artist Brian Jungen, who is of Swiss and Dunne-za First Nations ancestry, is one such Canadian, and he uses art to evoke complex cultural connections. His sculptures, “Prototypes for New Understanding” were made by re-assembling Nike Air Jordans into North West Aboriginal masks. Some of his work can be seen here.

Prompt: Select an image or an object from your personal cultural heritage, and use it to re-create an iconic Canadian symbol — or vice versa (transform something that is symbolically Canadian into something from your own personal cultural heritage). Although the beaver, the moose, the maple leaf, or poutine may be first to come to mind, you may think of many more!

Documentation: Send us a photo of your final creation as a .jpg file here. Even better, send us a series of photos of your creation "in-process".

CREATION #4: Canadian Migration

Did you move to/or immigrate to Canada? Or have you moved with/in Canada? Perhaps from a rural to an urban place, or from one city/province to another?

Prompt: Tell us your story of moving in/to Canada. For example, your story can describe the details of the day/night that you left and your arrival. Where did you leave? Where did you arrive? Who was there for your arrival (was there someone there for your arrival)? Tell us everything you want us to know about this experience. What were you feeling? How do you feel about the experience now? Write down as many details as you can.

Documentation: Give your story a title such as “I moved from Glasgow to Montreal at age 17 and did the unthinkable – I married a French Canadian!” If you don't want to use your last name, or if you want to use a pseudonym (false) name, that's ok. Send us your story here.

Options: If you don't have a moving story of your own, talk to someone who does and use the questions listed above to guide and document your conversation. Another option for this creation, is to send in a visual, in the form of a photograph, drawing, or other media of your choice, to accompany your story.

CREATION #5: Canada … Learning to Love you more Part II

Currently on exhibit at the Vancouver Art Gallery is "We Come to Witness: Sonny Assu in Dialogue with Emily Carr," an evocative series of work that challenges the representation of Indigenous peoples in Canada. In Assu's words, his work is "confronting the dominant colonial culture's continued portrayal of Indigenous peoples as a vanishing race.” Learn more about his work here.

Prompt: As a follow-up to Creation #1, sometimes the action of identifying what we love about something (or someone) provokes us to think about the "bigger picture." For this creation, submit a list of things that, in your opinion, Canada can improve on. What questions or uncertainties do you have for Canada (now and/or for the future)?

Documentation: Send us your list as a text in the body of a message here.

As usual, visual representations to accompany your list are always welcome!