Haudenosaunee (Mohawk, Turtle Clan) dancer/choreographer/performer Santee Smith speaks with Andrew Hunter (AGG Senior Curator) about her development as an artist, her relationship to her family, culture and community at Six Nations, the importance of intergenerational and intercultural Indigenous collaborations, cultural appropriation, and her relationship with her daughter Semiah Smith. Recorded in July 2018 at at her home and Talking Earth Pottery, the studio she shares with her father Steve Smith.
Andrew Hunter (AGG Senior Curator) speaks with artist Couzyn van Heuvelen from his home outside Bowmanville, Ontario. Born in Iqaluit, Nunavut, van Heuvelen received his BFA from York University in 2011 and his MFA in 2015. His artistic practice primarily consists of sculptural and installation works that draw from Inuit art, history and contemporary Inuit life. A contributor to the AGG exhibition Getting Under Our Skin (March 10-September 5, 2018) with his work Avataq, he addresses the importance of the seal hunt to the Inuit, the impacts of international sealing bans on northern communities and the misinformation spread by environmental and animal rights organizations. Getting Under Our Skin features works by Alethea Anarquq-Baril, Tanya Tagaq and Katherine Takpannie, complimented by work from the AGG's extensive collection of Inuit art curated by Inuit youth.
Jen Budney: On the Imbecile Institution, Art Museums, Globalization and Contemporary Art, Inequality and Community.
Jen Budney, PhD (University of Saskatoon) speaks candidly with Andrew Hunter (AGG Senior Curator) about the contemporary Art Museum as an “Imbecile Institution” that is elitist, uncreative, gendered and hierarchical, a place that doesn’t learn and often fails to live up to its stated PUBLIC role and responsibilities. Based in Saskatoon, she speaks of that communities strengths and struggles, a place of both progressiveness and divisiveness, a “microcosm of contemporary Canada.”
Katherine Takpannie, Avianna MacKenzie and Parr Etidloie discuss the importance of the seal hunt to the Inuit, the impacts of international sealing bans on northern communities and the ignorance informing the misinformation spread by various celebrity supported environmental and animal rights organizations. In conversation with Andrew Hunter (AGG Senior Curator), these Inuit youth express their pride in their culture and their hope that real dialogue can be established with these organizations. A compliment to the AGG exhibition Getting Under Our Skin (2018) featuring works by Alethea Anarquq-Baril, Tanya Tagaq, Couzyn van Huevelen and Katherine Takpannie, complemented by work from the AGG’s extensive collection Inuit art.
Artist Jeff Thomas (Urban Iroquois/Haudenasaunee) speaks with AGG Senior Curator Andrew Hunter about his exhibition “Birdman Rising: Conversations with Colonialism,” the history of Mississippian culture in the St. Louis/Edwardsville area, and the Cahokia Mounds, while reflecting on his three decades of work, his relationship with his Elder (Emily General), his father, his son BEAR, and the many Birdmen he was encountered. Thomas and Hunter are working on a major solo exhibition of Thomas’s work for AGG.
Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville Professor of Anthropology Dr. Cory Willmott speaks with AGG Senior Curator Andrew Hunter about working with Jeff Thomas on his exhibition “Birdman Rising: Conversations with Colonialism,” the history of Mississippian culture in the St. Louis/Edwardsville area, the Cahokia Mounds, and the challenges raised by the collections at SIUE.
Author, Community Historian and Advocate Arlene Chan speaks about growing up in Toronto's original Chinatown (at Dundas and Elizabeth Streets), Chinese Canadian history (including family experiences with the Head Tax and Chinese Exclusion Act), her remarkable mother Jean Lumb (Restaurateur, Citizenship Judge, Save Chinatown! Activist, and recipient of the Order of Canada, 1976) and her numerous accessible publications for youth and adults that have addressed significant gaps in the presence of the Chinese Canadian narrative in schools, libraries and public discourse. The absence and erasure of communities, cultures and histories in Canada remains a continuing theme of discussion in this ongoing series.
While in Glasgow, Andrew Hunter (AGG Senior Curator) talks with Marenka Thompson-Odlum (PhD candidate at University of Glasgow and Glasgow City Museums) about the history of slavery in Glasgow and the public work being done to raise awareness of the role Glasgow played in the Trans-Atlantic slave trade as well as its traces in the contemporary cityscape and finanical legacies. Born in St. Lucia, Thompson-Odlum talks about her background and how she came to study in Glasgow and her hopes for a new museum and cultural centre of Black culture and history in the city. Hunter draws parallels to the work being done in Canada by scholars and artists engaged with Black history and slavery interviewed in the Black Lives Rooted series of podcasts (particularly Dr. Charmaine Nelson of McGill University, and artists Camille Turner and Charmaine Lurch). A compliment to Hunter's interview with Rosie Spooner.
While visiting Glasgow, Andrew Hunter (AGG Senior Curator) talks with Rosie Spooner PhD (Lecturer, Design History and Theory, Glasgow School of Art and Lecturer, Information Studies,University of Glasgow) about her research on the history of the British Empire and Canadian Identity as it is embodied by, and embedded in, museums, Empire exhibitions and the Glasgow cityscape. Spooner speaks about the major Glasgow Worlds Fairs, the Doulton Fountain and current issues in Glasgow regarding public history. A compliment to Hunter's interview with Marenka Thompson-Odlum.
Liz Ikiriko (independent curator, photo editor and graduate student) and Andrew Hunter (Art Gallery of Guelph Senior Curator) introduce themselves and the Black Lives Rooted program, a series of interviews conducted in January and February of 2018 and broadcast on CFRU 93.3 - University of Guelph campus and community radio. Originally commissioned by the UofG's Office of Diversity and Human Rights and Black Student Association as a collaboration with the Art Gallery of Guelph.
"Rooted to our families, to our hidden histories and our present day place in Canada. The Art Gallery of Guelph’s podcast series Black Lives Rooted explores the creative practices of black intergenerational, emerging to established artists, curators and scholars as we look back at our absented presence, to the current space we inhabit. The series carries forward our known, studied and felt experiences, providing a platform to anchor on the course ahead." - Liz Ikiriko