With support from the Visual Arts Nova Scotia residency program in North end Halifax, two unique floats participated in the 2017 Natal Day Parade. Operating in two locations have given these projects a wide variety of input from the community members. On Fridays and Saturdays, I worked with folks attending Wonder’neath Art Society‘s Open Studio program on a project called Moving Mountains.
On Tuesdays and Wednesdays, I worked at Halifax Library North Branch location on float concepts and visualizations created through discussion with community members. We are working on a float representing Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, called The Vision, a concept developed entirely through consultation with community members on the issues facing the north end library community.
Volunteers performed these floats, walking 4kms on Monday August 7th in the Natal Day Parade during a beautiful and well attended day. Thanks to everyone who participated!
making mountains at Wonder’neath
Mountain costumes and props
Mountain hat details
Mountains emerge at Wonder’neath
The Vision, concept sketch
The Vision under construction
This project, Ris Publica, proposes the site of the civic parade as a unique possibility, as an event that carries forward a history and infrastructure of civic culture, while containing potential for the enactment of a diverse civic identity (articulating the chains of equivalence in the various public spheres). In a humorous form of open, generous and joyful participation, the project ensconces itself in the event of the parade, by creating the semblance of conventional float entries.
Ris Publica (trans. Public Laughter), Version 1, occurred on Monday August 1st, from 10:30 am until noon, along the Dartmouth waterfront as part of Halifax’s civic parade on Natal Day Parade. Four unique floats were included:
Domestic Cleansing – performers sweep around the rolling carpet Continue reading
detail of installation in orchard
24 karat overview of installation
Late August 2013 I installed this preliminary work at the White Rabbit Open Air residency in Economy, Nova Scotia. My piece is located in an old orchard, with all the tree scars covered as above, in gold leaf. I will be installing this work for the 2014 Uncommon Common Art event in King’s county NS.
In people, scars reveal clues to the history of a life lived. They are not wounds any longer; in fact, they are a testament to endurance – stronger and less likely to be injured in the future. Curiously, a tree contends with a limb removal by growing bark over the edge and sealing itself off from infection or burrowing insects. This process often continues to reveal the inner wood at the center.
The application of 24-karat gold leaf to these interior surfaces aims to initiate dialogue through metaphor with the viewer on the intrinsic qualities of valuation. How should we look at the personal experiences of injury and healing? As a wider discussion, valuation of ecological sustainability and economic systems of our Nova Scotian natural resources. The question at the crux of 24 Karat: what and how should we prioritize our development, both personally and as a society?
Bloomfield Awaits installation on building
On the side of the Bloomfield Centre in North end Halifax., there is a 1940’s style school speaker. I had been noticing it for some time as I passed by for breakfast or to take my son to the park. The Bloomfield Centre is a historic location that now acts as a community hub. The ownership of the property has been migrated to The Imagine Bloomfield Society and Housing NS, and is finally at the brink of transition into a more useful and productive center. They both supported my contribution to the discussion surrounding the future of the Centre in my own fashion, via a small site-specific artwork that incorporates the aforementioned speaker.
I have created a small installation that I feel addresses the sentiments of the Centre awaiting its destiny. I have fashioned (from copper) a decorative party hat, complete with pom-pom and ribbons which, when installed above the speaker, visually transforms that forgotten speaker into a New Year’s Eve style celebratory “noisemaker”- one that has been waiting for some time.
Garbarella (back view)
Community Compass, Spirit Wheel Bike
This project which was a funded 4Cs project in the spring of 2012. The 4Cs is committed to the concept that time spent creating together fosters lasting connections between the children and the community members. I collaborated with three other local artists: Heather Wilkinson, Jyelle Vogel (the artists who proposed the project) and William Robinson, together we worked to continue the revitalization of the St. Joseph A McKay elementary school ground as a vibrant community space culminating in outdoor community art projects. The project was facilitated by the Ecology Action Center and its volunteers, who helped us create unusual characters surrounding trashcans to encourage their use, and also a “Spirit Wheel” powered by children’s exuberance!
Dwell: the colony, location #4
Dwell: the colony, location #1
Dwell: the colony, location #5, before/after installation
Prototype for Dwell: the colony, Nocturne 2012
Dwell: the colony, location # 2
This project brought to light the small overlooked niches set into buildings in six small installations for Nocturne 2012 viewers, as they wandered the downtown core. Each one was filled with a glowing light and a translucent cover, the surface of each installation mimicking the texture of the wall surrounding it. Upon closer inspection, the cover is made from beeswax and the glow that emanates has a honeycomb pattern from within.
In the days of ancient civilizations, when the wild wasp was domesticated into the bee, humans and bees developed a close relationship with each other. An external representation of this relationship is the bees’ dwelling, the hive. The modern frame-based beehive, with its underlying principles of rationality and profit making, has existed only for some 150 years. The death of many modern hives has likely occurred due to overpopulation and inattention to the health of the colony population. This project recognizes the tenuous and precarious nature of current bee populations and draws parallels faced by our urban downtown core. We are in the process of seeing many vacant properties and small businesses dying out, replaced by huge box stores in the suburbs, due to inattention to the needs of our downtown businesses and residents. Both colonies and cities are social organisms, needing stable structures and healthy environments to prosper. This project attempts to merge concepts of social and environmental responsibility, employing beehive metaphors within a locative context.
Mom from the road
Mom close up
This piece was created just before Mother’s Day. Non-toxic materials were used – remnants of the work remain to this day on Kaye Street in Halifax.