Where is Here? Small cities, Deep mapping, Sustainable Futures

July 20 2016 / 7:00am - July 22 2016 / 10:00pm

Schedule of events

community partners: CVAG / VIU / NIC / SFU / TRU / UBC
July 20 registration 4–6pm / July 21 9–5:30 / July 22 9:30–4 for details:

July 21 5:30 pm place-based site works tour: Andy Everson, Karver Everson, George Littlechild
July 22 8:00 pm symposium closing remarks, video screening / performance (dusk): Liz Carter, Steven Thomas Davies and Lindsay Delaronde with guest curator Toby Lawrence
July 23 10 am TALK WALK MAKE group exhibition: reception / artist talk (Clive Powsey) / community walk at Mount Washington (North Island College Shadbolt Studios)
MAKE ART WEDNESDAY community drop in program at CVAG July 13/20/27, August 10/17/24 11am–1pm

Where is Here?: Small Cities, Deep Mapping and Sustainable Futures
 is a symposium taking place at CVAG and Native Sons Hall that seizes on the tremendous interest shown in cultural mapping and placemaking practices by artists, researchers and small city placemakers, and brings to bear multiple knowledge-domains to move our collective understanding of these practices forward. The project, a partnership between the Comox Valley Art Gallery and Vancouver Island University, includes the following components:

– Explore Here – a symposium engaging over 25 experts from local, provincial, national and international circles on the topic of cultural mapping with a focus on Canadian small cities;
– Create Here – an arts-based research program MAP consisting of exhibitions,performances,workshops program MAP/unMAP, creative residencies, and a symbolic reclamation and honouring of territory for First Nations artists.

MAP consists of a series of site installation and time-based explorations (in video, performance, installation and photography) by Canadian artists working with ideas of place in politicized and localized ways. Presenting artists are challenging dominant understandings surrounding place and community, and putting forward new ways of ‘inhabiting’, ‘approaching’, ‘occupying’ and ‘representing’ space. Their work, rooted in deep research and exploration, will form an integral part of the Where is Here? symposium – running from July 20 to 22, 2016. Work created in MAP will also be disseminated through a publication created post-project by CVAG to explore and communicate the ideas and investigative processes embedded within.

The MAP program aims to:

– Challenge dominant representations and manifestations of place, allowing for new ideas to emerge;
– Draw upon the investigative processes at play within a select group of contemporary artists to critically and thoughtfully consider the potentials underlying place;
– Apply these processes within a small-city context – recognizing small cities as potential sites of innovation as related to arts-based development;
– Raise awareness surrounding these processes – including to the symposium presenters (municipal planners and developers, cultural mapping advocates, academics, artists, etc.), and to the wider public (via the symposium, exhibition and publication).

Small cities throughout the globe have been impacted by the ailments of globalization, witnessing, for instance, the out-migration of youth populations, the rise of crime and the evaporation of economic mainstays. Many such cities (including Courtenay/Comox Valley and other resource-dependent communities on Vancouver Island), are struggling to re-define their place within the ‘knowledge economy’, and to activate new forms of citizenship, meaning and identity as a way to survive and thrive. Artists can play a powerful role in this act of re-imagining and re-constructing. MAP brings a select group of place-based professional artists into contact with a small-city creative development conversation – asking what insights these practices might afford for a holistic, sustainable and critically-rooted approach to development.

Facebook Photo Album – Where is Here? Symposium