Image caption: Artist and educator Adrian Blackwell (left) and architect David Fortin (right) will be co-moderating an upcoming online roundtable discussion about land ownership in Canada.
WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 03, 2021 | by Gillian Minaker
An upcoming Brock University panel discussion will bring together distinguished Indigenous and other artists, designers and architects to reimagine Canadian cities towards a more inclusive future.
Presented by the Centre for Studies in Arts and Culture (STAC) and Department of Visual Arts (VISA), “Rethinking Property in c\a\n\a\d\a” will be hosted as a Zoom webinar on Wednesday, Nov. 10 from 1:30 to 3 p.m. and is open to the Brock and wider community.
The online event will be co-moderated by artist and educator Adrian Blackwell, Associate Professor, School of Architecture at the University of Waterloo, whose art practice spans photography, video, sculpture, urban theory and design; and David Fortin (Métis Nation of Ontario), a LEED-accredited professional and registered architect. Fortin is also a member of the Royal Architectural Institute of Canada (RAIC) Indigenous Task Force that seeks ways to foster and promote Indigenous design in Canada.
The discussion will bring together a diverse group of panelists, including artist Bonnie Devine (Genaabaajing First Nation), Founding Chair of the Indigenous Visual Culture program at OCAD University and winner of the 2021 Governor General Award in Visual and Media Arts; landscape architect Tiffany Kaewen Dang, a territorial scholar from Treaty 6 Territory in Edmonton, Alta.; and Luugigyoo Patrick Reid Stewart (Nisga’a, B.C.), the first Indigenous president of an architectural association in Canada and the first Indigenous person in B.C. to own and operate an architectural firm.
Rethinking Property in c\a\n\a\d\a is the first of four events in a series called Fictive Architecture presented by STAC. The series is funded through a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Connection Grant, with matching funds from the Office of the Vice-President, Research at Brock University.
Catherine Parayre, Associate Professor and Director of STAC’s Research Centre in Interdisciplinary Arts and Creative Culture, said these events will provide a creative and intellectual environment for all participants to express and debate views, sharing experiences that touch on personal perspectives or matters of social urgency.
“This series is part of the activities of the Research Centre in Interdisciplinary Arts and Creative Culture, whose vision is predicated on the fact that researchers and creators, no matter their discipline, share a passion and drive for their subject in which creativity is often at the root of their unique vision or forms of inquiry.”
The series is also connected to STAC’s Small Walker Press (SWP), a small innovative publishing house that produces two companion books each year as part of the Walker Cultural Leader Series. Blackwell is one of the artists (along with Landon Mackenzie) who will contribute to the 2022 SWP publications informed by the roundtable discussion.
Derek Knight, Associate Professor, History of Art and Visual Culture and co-editor for the Small Walker Press, said this timely panel promises to be informative, far-reaching and will posit new, inclusive ways of re-imagining the land, concepts of ownership and shelter in Canada.
“Blackwell is committed to thinking about new ways of interacting with our built environs, especially at this critical time in which decolonialization brings into focus the pressing need to resolve the challenge of unceded territories and respect the role of First Peoples as integral to how we re-envision Canada in the future,” Knight said.
The webinar is free to attend, although registration is required through the Zoom event web page.