The Conversation of Art

By Nathan Levasseur

imagePhoto: Sara French as Reena Smith at Buying and Selling

The Works to Work Internship has given me the opportunity to meet and work alongside professional artists, both local and national, up and coming artists, students, volunteers and the public.

During the internship I was fortunate enough to discuss many topics including systematic oppression, Canadian colonialism, male privilege, power and hierarchy both pre and during festival. The pre-festival discussions were facilitated by Stephanie Bailey and ran through May for four hours a day. During this time our group had many class discussions and workshops, some facilitated by artists, the most notable being Dawn Marie Marchand. Marchand discussed pan-indigenizing, Canadian colonialism, residential schools and multi-generational violence. I found the discussion to be very positive and I hope to engage in more discussion and become more active in community.

 During festival I had positive conversations with performance artist Reena Smith and my supervisor Olivia Chow. Reena and I discussed alternative housing styles and personal fulfillment through ‘home’ and space. Her exhibit, Buying and Selling,  in collaboration with the Department of Unusual Certainties (DoUC) provides insight into these themes. Olivia and I discussed gender and performance through video and installation. This conversation was sparked by Tony Olivares’ performance at The Works Gala.

 In conclusion it was the people I met, the relationships I formed, the discussions and the sharing of information that made the internship meaningful.