Tag Archives: social justice

grow garden grow

Everything is green and everywhere is green!  Things are growing and changing  … the trees are wide with love, the birds are finding worms all over the place, and the air is warm.  And the gardens are exploding!

For the first time in three years, I have not started a garden – and I miss it!  My first garden was with my dear friend in a yard where we battled with deer and grew kale, carrots, lettuce and tried to grow corn – with not much success. Growing in community can be a really exciting, challenging, and expanding type of experience.

Community gardens are all over the place – there was one in my old Victoria neighbourhood and although I wasn’t really part of it, I really appreciated the people who made it happen!

Growing things is very creative!  How will you arrange your growing space?  What types of plants will you grow? Why? What does it feel like to grow things?  I have always found weeding a very rewarding experience and oh-so-tangible!

And how are people connecting gardens, art, and social justice?  Here are just two projects to check out:

Name: EcoArtLab – Ella Cooper
Location: Vancouver, BC
What’s happening:Multidisciplinary artist and educator, Ella Cooper has recently gained four of the City of Vancouver’s Green Street plots and would like to turn them into a veritable eco-arts gallery and space for community engagement. Collaborating with the Community Arts Council’s Eco Arts Salon, gardeners, guerilla knitters, creative minds, poets and interested members of the community we will be working to create a happy blend of community gardening and eco arts projects that creates an interactive green space that will evolve as the plants grow.”  EcoArtsLab

Name: LoveArtLab –  Annie Sprinkles and Elizabeth Stephens
Location: California
What’s happening: A manifesto, an EcoSex symposium this very weekend, the chakras, love art lab and ecosexuals!  Who knew?  I want to go to California right now! Here is the first point from the manifesto: “(i) WE ARE THE ECOSEXUALS. The Earth is our lover. We are madly, passionately, and fiercely in love, and we are grateful for this relationship each and every day. In order to create a more mutual and sustainable relationship with the Earth, we collaborate with nature. We treat the Earth with kindness, respect and affection.” Sexecology.org

There are many other projects, activities, websites, and neat ideas floating around … but I think that is it for me for now!

Peace out,

handmade is where it’s at.

Happy saturday!  Thinking of all things handmade today …  today is my first craft show … in Regina at St. Paul’s Cathedral from 12-6! You can see a few images of my felted creatures in the gallery of this blog.

And .. here is some Bansky for ya!  Happy Saturday!  Some crazy dance music attached so … be prepared to turn it down or dance!

World Community Arts Day! Today!

Don’t forget — today is World Community Arts Day – Art as a Catalyst for Caring and Sharing.

Make some art!  Share it with your friends, family, and community!  Send some love out to the universe and eachother.

Today, I stood outside with a group of awesome and committed individuals concerned about social justice and homelessness in Saskatchewan and specifically Regina.

1% Home Sweet Home,  a collaborative effort by individuals and over seven organizations, was created to raise awareness about the low vacancy rate in Regina (1%)  and the cost of housing in relation to our wages.  It was freezing!!  And, in a way, the weather kicked it up a notch to really prove the point – everyone needs a warm, dry safe place to live – don’t they?

Photo credit:  Prairie Dog Mag

The average cost of a one-bedroom apartment in Regina is $802.  If you are on social assistance, that is 93% of your cheque!  If you work at a minimum wage job, 73% of your income will go towards that $802 apartment and food.

Creator and photo credit: Gerry Ruecker

As a teenager,  I was both kicked out of and voluntarily left my parent’s house (a few times).  I always had a place to stay and have always been grateful to those people who let me stay with them.  I never thought of myself as homeless but I guess that couchsurfing is a form of homelessness.  My experience has given me an understanding of how it can happen and compassion for those who are experiencing it right now. But do you have to experience it or know someone who has to have compassion?

There are so many stories.  As part of the installation, there were also videos playing that Dr. Marc Spooner recorded as part of his study on homelessness in Regina.  He spoke with the experts – those who are homeless.

Today, someone stopped and asked me .. are the homeless just people who don’t work?   It wasn’t really a question.  Even though I have personal experience and a heart for the issue, it is really so complex, I wasn’t really sure what to say.  I tried to say a few things but I don’t feel I said the things that will bring this man to a deeper understanding.  Maybe the media coverage will help to bring the message across – CBC, Prairie Dog, Leader Post, radio stations like MBC all came out to interview and take pictures.

I don’t know.  I still have a lot to learn – so do we all.

montreal is happenin

Oh my! I just discovered an on-line magazine based in Montreal and it is called Inspire Art – here is the pic from their main page! It is a place to find out what is happening in Montreal and beyond – filled with awesome resources, posts, and news …  and definitions … i love it and will definitely check it out regularly!

Art and Education

Well, unfortunately the Art Smash was cancelled so I couldn’t get there … however a couple friends of mine and I had our own in my living room .. not quite the large community gathering that was planned but interesting and fun nevertheless!   I will post a few pictures in the next couple days in the gallery.

Here is a neat course that I am interested in taking … wondering if anyone has taken anything in this program?  Exploring Arts for Social Change

A while back I went to a conference organized by Common Weal Community Arts —   Dr. Judith Marcuse (one of the founding members of the Simon Fraser – International Centre of Art for Social Change) was there and talked about her work and this new program  — very inspiring ….   I wonder what other programs there are like this in the world?

Art projects I love

1. Aurora – the felted snail

2.  The Sketchbook Project – thanks ben for this great link and awesome project!

3.  A current project of ARTivention. The first of 365 hand-knit miniature sweaters was placed in Albuquerque, New Mexico on May 5, 2010 launching a yearlong collaborative project. Since the inception of the project, sweaters have been prominently placed in public areas across the United States. Attached to each sweater is a tag that asks the finders and collectors of these publicly placed sweaters to make a monetary contribution to the National Coalition for the Homeless.

4. Ernesto Neto – Brazilian artist talking about his fibre-wood art sculpture  -he also uses spices in his work — imagine going into a space where you explore and smell cinnamon,  clove, ginger, and pepper …  ohhh lovely .. wish i could experience this in person …

5.. Sâkêwêwak Artists’ Collective –  This week, this Regina-based artists collective is putting on performance art mini-festival .. I am going to check it out .. I will let you know what happens

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