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Guelph, ON N1G 1Y1
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Thursday, January 18, 2018

Big Ideas in Art & Culture: Michael Roberson | Thursday, January 18, 2018, 7 pm

AGG is pleased to host the 2018 Big Ideas in Art and Culture Lecture, featuring Michael Roberson (New York). Roberson’s talk, The Trans Sound of Black Freedom, will detail insights and stories from his community of House | Ball artists, who are now establishing the Ballroom Freedom School in New York City. The lecture launches the 2018 ArtsEverywhere Festival.

Friday, January 19, 2018

Art as Activism | Activism as Art | Friday, January 19, 2018, 1-3 pm

A program of the 2018 ArtsEverywhere Festival, join us for a panel discussion at the Art Gallery of Guelph with Dolleen Tisawii’ashii Manning (University of Western Ontario, Centre for the Study of Theory and Criticism) and Amanda Cachia (Assistant Professor of Art History at Moreno Valley College), moderated by Andrew Hunter (Senior Curator, Art Gallery of Guelph). Co-organized by Carla Rice (Canada Research Chair in Care, Gender, and Relationships, University of Guelph) and Ajay Heble (Director, International Institute for Critical Studies in Improvisation).

Wednesday, February 7, 2018






Drawing upon the Art Gallery of Guelph’s permanent collection as well as the exhibition 150 Acts: Art, Activism, Impact, Inuk Elder Piita Irniq will explore the evolving character of the North and the region’s landscape, history, and stories through the lens of some of Canada’s most significant Inuit artists, past and present.

Piita Irniq is an Inuk educator, artist, former commissioner of Nunavut, and residential school survivor.  He speaks across the country and internationally of Inuit culture and Inuit Qaujimajatuqangit (Inuit traditional knowledge).

7 pm – doors open at 6:30; free admission

Image (detail): Pudlo Pudlat, Loon Ship with Airplanes, 1982-83, coloured pencil on paper. Purchased with funds donated by Blount Canada Ltd., with assistance from the Canada Council for the Arts, 1986, Macdonald Stewart Art Centre Collection at the Art Gallery of Guelph.

Sewatonhna ren - May Your Spirit be Well
Saturday, February 24, 2018

Tekaronhiáhkhwa Santee Smith’s
Sewatonhna ren – May Your Spirit be Well
Saturday, February 24, 2018

Afternoon Performance: 2pm
Evening Performance: 7pm
Suggested admission: $10 per person

The Art Gallery of Guelph is honoured to present two performances of Sewatonhna ren – May Your Spirit be Well by choreographer and dancer Tekaronhiáhkhwa Santee Smith with feature artists Semiah Smith, Julianne Blackbird and Montana Summers. This powerful production acknowledges the lives of Mohawk Institute Residential School students by symbolically offering past students what they did not receive: love, caring, tenderness, nourishment, cultural knowledge and language. It is a response to the residential school experience, an embodied way to feed the hunger of their spirits and to say: “kwè:iahre – we remember you, kwanorónhkhwa – we love you and tenkwáhsnie – we will care for you”.

Tekaronhiáhkhwa Santee Smith is from Six Nations of the Grand River, Ontario. She is a mother, multi-disciplinary artist, and award-winning producer, choreographer and Kaha:wi Dance Theatre’s Artistic Director. She holds performance in a sacred space, as all life is sacred. Santee maintains an Onkwehon:we understanding of performance, the body and role of artist: music and dance are celebrations of life; the body is a vessel to house our spirit during our earth walk and the artist as a storyteller, transformer and medicine person. From this perspective her work speaks about identity and humanity in relation to the creative universe.

The Mohawk Institute was built in Brantford in 1904, in the same year as the Macdonald Consolidated School (the building that is now home to the AGG). These two buildings have an identical red brick construction, a columned front porch facade, and architectural footprint; however, each was built with a distinct and separate educational, political, and cultural agenda. The Mohawk Institute had a mandate for the “aggressive civilization” of Indigenous peoples, including forced segregation and assimilation, the eradication of Native languages, and indoctrination to colonial culture and religion, achieved through an abusive “educational” system. The Macdonald Consolidated School was established as Ontario’s first public school, a day school for rural children.

Sewatonhna ren – May Your Spirit be Well is presented as the closing program of 150 Acts: Arts, Activism, Impact

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