Don’t Listen to Me: Mark Harvey

on plants, toxic masculinity, + advice from grandmothers

I’ve descended into a dark room with a large video projection of what looks like a tropical jungle. The camera moves slowly and deliberately through rich vegetation while the narrator— New Zealand artist Mark Harvey—gently talks to you about Schrödinger’s Cat. Mark explains how plants absorb energy from other nearby plants, and the research suggesting this applies to people too. He talks about quantum entanglement. The whole thing is quite hypnotic. And sitting on the floor in the far corner of the room, is a small video monitor showing the artist wrestling with a young tree, yanking and pulling, trying to rip it out of the ground with his hands.

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Art Talks Gallery Tour

A free bus tour of K'jipuktuk/Halifax galleries featuring talks with indigenous artists and curators: Carrie Allison, Aiden Gillis, Tarah Hogue, Maria Hupfeld & Wanda Nanibush. Followed by the launch of the Fall issue of Visual Arts News: UNKOWN LANDS.

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Welcoming our new Editor: Shannon Webb-Campbell

Shannon Webb-Campbell is a mixed Indigenous (Mi’kmaq) settler poet, writer, and critic. Her forthcoming book, I Am A Body of Land (Book*hug, 2018) attempts to explore a relationship to poetic responsibility and accountability, and frame poetry as a form of revisioning. Still No Word (Breakwater 2015) was the recipient of Egale Canada’s Out In Print Award. She holds a MFA in Creative Writing from University of British Columbia, a BA from Dalhousie University, and is currently completing a MA in English Literature at Memorial University of Newfoundland and Labrador. Shannon is a member of Qalipu Mi’kmaq First Nation, and currently lives in Montréal.

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Resource Extraction: Meagan Musseau

Exploring memory, language and our relationships to the landscape

“My response to the landscape is emotional,” says Meagan Musseau. “I observe and engage with the land and the social environment in which I live.”

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Portable Culture: Soheila Esfahani

  Billions are said to be in global circulation. In the United States alone, five hundred million are manufactured every year. They are everywhere, including inside and outside of our large retail shops. Their ubiquity and number, however, do not guarantee their visibility. Few of us look at, let alone think about the wooden shipping...

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Difficult Woman: Emily Vey Duke

*This article appeared in the Summer 2018 Visual Arts News’ Special 40th Anniversary Issue Emily Vey Duke—one half of the creative duo Duke + Battersby— exudes this refreshingly raw honesty that makes people feel like they know her. She’s a bit of a Halifax art world legend, and speaks candidly about her own experiences with...

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JJ Lee’s Hyphenated Realities

Exploring Chinese-Canadian identities through the lens of "Chinese Food"

*This article appeared in the Summer 2018 Visual Arts News’ Special 40th Anniversary Issue Driving down the Bedford Highway in Halifax, you pass signs for China Town restaurant—a Nova Scotian behemoth dating back to the 70s, with that kitschy “Chinese-style” font in huge fire-engine red letters across faux panelling that you can’t miss. Artist JJ Lee’s...

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Beyond The Island, Another Island

Erik Moskowitz, Amanda Trager and Amish Morrell in Conversation

Cape Breton has existed as a Shangri-La of sorts for Americans for over half a century, firmly rooting itself in the imaginary of New York’s avant-garde circles, political radicals, draft dodgers, back-to-the-landers and, more recently, those simply looking for an affordable getaway.

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WAKA OKABAYASHI: Beauty in Biophilia

Waka Okabayashi on human-plant relationships

“Something happens when you’re walking and you’re kind of selecting which plant you want ... Sometimes I’m just walking and I’m not even thinking of collecting plants, but I see a plant and its almost like our eyes meet.”

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Pattern Clash: Andrew Cairns

Creating spaces for projection + finding freedom in paint

“It can be powerful and provocative to bring decoration in. It’s unexpected and not always seen as high fine art."

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