Sunday, July 8, 2018

Changes at WIAprojects!


WIAprojects will be leaving the Centre for Women’s Studies in Education at OISE UT on January 1, 2019. The Centre is closing and it is with much regret that our program must leave. We are deeply grateful to the Centre for 14 years of office, storage and exhibition space, research and workshop opportunities, the collegiality of fellow associates, and the extraordinary support of many Centre Heads.

WIAprojects will be continuing to develop projects – in research, publication and exhibition - on an ad hoc basis at different sites across Canada. We will however have an ongoing presence in Toronto thanks to the support of Phil Anderson and Gallery 1313. WIAprojects@1313 will present monthly exhibitions in the gallery courtyard window at Gallery 1313. These exhibitions may be accompanied by courtyard performances.

For 2018 WIA Directors, Leena Raudvee and Pam Patterson will, as co-curators, present a series of 6 window exhibits by provincial artists and designers opening with an ARTIFACTS window, Tiny Homes: Everyone is Downsizing on August 1st. Starting January 1 2019 to July 2019 WIA Associate Director and curator, Julia Louise Pereira will work with Joyce Jodie Kim and Shirley Shoning as  CARPOS COLLECTIVE  and curate a series of 6 window exhibitions by emerging artists. August 1 will be an anniversary window and the fall 2019 series will feature work by disability artists.



THE CANADIAN POSTCARD PROJECT
Mallory Diaczun

On daily 10-5pm to Sept 2018 

CWSE Hallway Gallery, 2nd floor 252 Bloor Street West, Toronto. 


The Canadian Postcard Project is a nationwide community initiative which connects young individuals (ages 12-20) with Canadian artists. Emerging and established professional artists from across the country participate in a postcard exchange. The project begins with each student choosing an artist/artwork s/he admires and then creating a postcard in reaction to that chosen piece. Once the student artwork is made and mailed, the Canadian artist sends a new artwork, in the form of a postcard, back in response.

Through a variety of classroom lessons that teach the act of looking, describing, analyzing, interpreting, and critiquing, students engage in cooperative learning and collaboration that results in an authentic visual dialogue between young and practicing artists. The Canadian Postcard Project brings Canadian artwork into the public school realm, and helps educate youth on different styles, mediums, and themes countrywide.

Mallory Diaczun is an artist working mostly in sculpture, installation, and community art. Her artwork flows from her love of basketball, as she hand-makes and installs basketball nets on abandoned hoops in various neighbourhoods. As an arts educator, Diaczun uses her love of sports and athletics to engage students who are at-risk. Her focus is to empower youth to build strong relationships with their communities, both locally and nationwide, and to develop a lifelong passion for the arts. Diaczun is currently facilitating a community art project in rural Palmerston, where her students with special needs will be painting murals directly onto the basketball courts and backboards in town.

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Lillian Allen & Joanna Black: Learning for Social Change

(Joanna Black) Work by Scott Boyko

(Lillan Allen) Photo of HYP by Martin Reid

Opening Feb. 5, 5.30 - 7 pm. Conversation 6 pm
Exhibition runs from Feb 6 - May 4, 2018 9 AM -8 PM daily.
CWSE Hallway Gallery
OISE/UT, 252 Bloor Street West (just east of St. George & Bloor), 2nd Floor, Toronto
FREE and accessible.

Link to images from the opening as photographed and reinterpreted by Miklos Legrady: http://www.mikloslegrady.com/joanna_black/social_change/index.html

While socially engaged art, as a category of practice, is still a working construct, the artist who identifies as such is an individual whose specialty includes working professionally with/in society. Writes Pablo Helguera (2011) in Education for Socially Engaged Art, “Standard education practices – such as engagement with audiences, inquiry-based methods, collaborative dialogues, and hands-on activities – provide an ideal framework for process-based and collaborative conceptual [creative] practices (p. xi).” “Students” facilitated by socially engaged artists/educators become aware of why they are acting and learn how to act in an effective way.
Toronto, dub poet, activist and writer Lillian Allen and Manitoba artist, researcher and educator Joanna Black, as socially engaged cultural workers, facilitate artists'/educators' creative work within precarious and racialized communities. Both women are professors at universities and value partnerships, process, and collaboration toward action-in-community. Their students’ creative activity has been animated, shared and presented locally and internationally.
Each woman mentors young adult students: Lillian Allen works with artists, designers and writers in liberal studies at OCAD University and Joanna Black facilitates emergent teachers in visual art teacher education at University of Manitoba. Their teaching encourages students to focus not only internally in critical and creative making, but also outward among each other and in company with community. A complex dialogue ensues where social critique, understanding, and engagement are valued.
Black’s digiART project provides a venue where emergent teachers, mostly young adults, can examine human rights issues through the creation of new media texts ranging from photographs, videos, and animations to graphic novels and performance art; while Allen’s students develop and facilitate interactive creative writing and art workshops to connect youth to their creative power in context of developing a collective voice. Allen's projects are in collaboration with the Winsom Foundation in Belize and the Hamilton Youth Poets. 

These education–as–art projects aim to democratize viewers, making them partners, participants, or collaborators in the construction of the works. “This is a powerful and positive re-envisioning of education that can only happen in art, as it depends on art’s unique patterns of performativity, experience, and exploration of ambiguity (Helguera, 2011, p. 81).” It is a productive and transformative activity.







Joanna Black would like to thank the University of Manitoba for funding assistance for this project.
Lillian Allen would like to thank OCAD University, the Hamilton Youth Poets, Winsom Foundation.