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Arts and Culture

“Words that are lasting”

The Faculty of Law has unveiled a permanent art installation in their lobby, paying tribute to Indigenous Peoples.

[Queen's University Faculty of Law Indigenous art]
Recreations of seven wampum belts are now hanging from the ceiling of the Faculty of Law building. (University Communications)

Every time students, faculty, staff, and visitors enter the Faculty of Law building, they will be met with a reminder of the original inhabitants of the land on which Queen’s sits.

This spring, the faculty launched a competition to commission a piece of Indigenous art to reside in the Gowling WLG Atrium. The goal of this installation was to portray the relationship between Indigenous Peoples in Canada and the law.

“I know that the entire Queen’s Law community is thrilled with this beautiful addition to the school’s atrium, a moving recognition that Queen’s University is situated on the traditional territory of the Anishinaabe and Haudenosaunee peoples, as well as an important tribute to Indigenous legal systems,” said Dean Bill Flanagan.

Artist Hannah Claus’ proposal, “Words that are lasting”, was announced as the winner in May, and she spent the summer preparing the art piece, which includes recreations of seven wampum belts suspended from the lobby ceiling.

“I spent a fair bit of time tracking down different individuals to ensure I had permission to reproduce the wampum belts, so there was some time spent getting in touch with different people,” she says. “The wampum belts that I selected to reproduce vary in function: some relate to governance structure within the Haudenosaunee Confederacy, and others represent nation to nation agreements between the Haudenosaunee and the Anishinaabe – the two main Indigenous groups who inhabit this area.” 

  • [Queen's University Faculty of Law wampum belts Hannah Claus Indigenous art]
    The seven piece installation can be viewed from the lobby and from all levels of the main staircase. (University Communications)
  • [Queen's University Faculty of Law Bill Flanagan]
    Bill Flanagan, Dean of the Faculty of Law, spoke about the importance of reconciliation and Indigenous law. (University Communications)
  • [Queen's University Faculty of Law Hannah Claus art]
    Hannah Claus speaks about her art installation. (University Communications)
  • [Queen's University Faculty of Law Indigenous]
    Students, faculty, staff, and community members attended the unveiling. (University Communications)
  • [Queen's University Faculty of Law Indigenous]
    Back to front, left to right: Principal Daniel Woolf, Bill Flanagan, Brandon Maracle, David Sharpe, Hannah Claus, Shelby Percival. (University Communications)

Ms. Claus is a visual artist of English and Kanien'kehÁ:ka / Mohawk ancestries and a member of the Tyendinaga Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte. She teaches contemporary Indigenous art as a sessional lecturer at Kiuna, a First Nations post-secondary institution, in Odanak, Québec.

She is hopeful the art will both give Indigenous students, faculty, staff, and visitors something that relates to them when they enter the building, and encourage non-Indigenous people to learn more about the populations and cultures who live where they have chosen to study.

“I hope that the installation creates an Indigenous presence as soon as you come into the space,” she says, noting that wampum belts are a memory device that belongs to Eastern Indigenous nations' oral cultures. “As the artwork was being installed, a professor from an Indigenous Law course came out onto the stairs to see, and was very excited – he says he intends to bring his class down to the lobby at the start of term going forward.”

The installation of this public art piece is an important element of the Faculty of Law’s multifaceted response to the Calls to Action of Canada’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

The ceremony was video recorded and can be streamed

Women of impact

The Agnes Etherington Art Centre will host an announcement by Canada’s Minister of Status of Women on Tuesday.

[Women of Impact]
The federal government is honouring a number of "Women of Impact in Canada", and seeking nominations of additional women to honour. (Supplied Photo)

Editor's note: This event was originally scheduled for Monday, Oct. 1 and has been moved to Tuesday, Oct. 2.

A number of Canadian women of impact will visit Queen’s next week, in a sense.

To launch Women’s History Month in Canada, the Honourable Maryam Monsef, Canada’s Minister of Status of Women, will make an announcement at the Agnes Etherington Art Centre on Tuesday.

She will launch a Government of Canada initiative called the “Women of Impact in Canada” Gallery – an online museum exhibit where Canadians can learn about and celebrate the accomplishments of women in fields ranging from science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM); arts; politics; human rights; and women who were trailblazers in new fields. Some prominent Queen’s women appear in the group, including Suzanne Fortier – the university’s former Vice-Principal (Academic) and Vice-Principal (Research) who is now the Principal of McGill University.

Minister Monsef will be hosted by the Queen’s Female Leadership in Politics (QFLIP) student group. Co-chair Meredith Wilson-Smith and Frannie Sobcov were contacted by the Minister’s office earlier this week about the announcement.

“We’re thrilled and proud to have the opportunity to work with Status of Women Canada to amplify the representation of these Canadian women and leaders whose successes often go under-recognized,” says Ms. Wilson-Smith. “The Women of Impact initiative shows every Canadian that women have always had the ability to make trailblazing strides in the face of sociocultural barriers.”

[Queen's University Agnes Etherington Art Centre QFLIP]
Frannie Sobcov and Meredith Wilson-Smith. (University Communications)

“Meaningful relationships between organizations such as these provide an incredible chance for discourse on our shared passion of women’s political leadership,” adds Ms. Sobcov. “It’s an honour to launch Women’s History Month with a woman like Minister Monsef—a living example that age, nationality, and gender are not impediments to a political career in Canada, but rather assets and opportunities.”

The Women of Impact gallery is a living initiative, meaning that Canadians can also nominate a woman of impact in their communities by completing a form on the government’s website.

Elizabeth Goodyear-Grant, faculty supervisor for QFLIP, says she was “very excited and honoured” that the Minister will be launching the gallery and Women’s History Month at Queen’s, and believes the gallery is an important initiative.

“Most immediately, it is important because it serves a role modelling function for younger women and girls who will see people like them in all types of roles and fields, particularly in roles as innovators and leaders,” she says. “Also, research is clear that women are less comfortable talking about and promoting their own achievements – so it’s important to have initiatives that ensure women’s achievements receive due recognition.”

The unveiling of the online gallery will take place Tuesday. Oct. 2 at 10 am at the Agnes Etherington Art Centre, and the event is open to the public.

Visit the Women of Impact in Canada website for a full listing of honorees.

An artful donation

The most prolific donors in Queen’s history have added to their legacy with a gift of just over $1 million (U.S.).

[Rembrandt van Rijn, Head of an Old Man in a Cap, around 1630, oil on panel. Gift of Alfred and Isabel Bader, 2003 (46-031).
Rembrandt van Rijn, Head of an Old Man in a Cap, around 1630, oil on panel. Gift of Alfred and Isabel Bader, 2003 (46-031). Photo by John Glembin

Alfred Bader (Sc’45, Arts’46, MSc’47, LLD’86), and Isabel Bader (LLD’07) have agreed to support four projects, all of which exemplify their passion for the arts. 

“The visual and performing arts are important for all people,” says Isabel Bader. “Sharing these opportunities is important. We all blossom when we are helped and encouraged. This is why we are supporting these programs.”

Alfred is a lifelong art collector with a special appreciation for Dutch and Flemish paintings from the Baroque period, and two of the four projects reflect this interest.

The gift includes a $645,000 donation to the Agnes Etherington Art Centre to promote The Bader Collection, The Agnes’s prized collection of more than 200 European paintings donated by the Baders. The money will fund a touring exhibition – the Collection’s first in 30 years – that will launch in Fall 2019 at The Agnes. The exhibition, Leiden, circa 1630: Rembrandt Emerges, focuses on a pivotal period in Rembrandt’s development as an artist and his artistic network in his native Leiden. It will also fund The Isabel and Alfred Bader Lecture in European Art, a lecture that will give Queen’s students and faculty access to some of the world’s most-acclaimed scholars. A portion of the gift is also earmarked for creating a digital platform for the Collection so that students, scholars, and art enthusiasts around the world can enjoy easy online access to these treasures and related research.

The gift also includes a $200,000 donation to the Department of Art History and Art Conservation to purchase a digitally assisted 3-D microscope and an electromagnetic multi-band image scanner. 

“These two pieces will transform our ability to examine works of art without destroying them,” says Patricia Smithen (MA’93), a professor in the department who specializes in paintings conservation. “No other school in Canada can offer students the opportunity to develop these skills.” 

While Alfred is a visual arts aficionado, Isabel is a long-time musician who enjoys all forms of the performing arts. The remaining two projects reflect her passions.

A third component of the gift is $70,000 for the Musicians in Residence Program at the Bader International Study Centre at Herstmonceux Castle near Isabel’s former home in East Sussex, England. The funding will enable musicians in residence Shelley Katz and Diana Gilchrist to relaunch the long-dormant Castle Concert Series, host free masterclasses and lecture-recitals for students, and take students to off-campus cultural events.

The final component is $150,000 to fund Queen’s first-ever Indigenous arts festival and an ambitious exhibition. A collaboration between The Agnes and the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts, the festival will take place at both venues in March.  

“With the Baders’ support, we can celebrate and affirm the vitality of contemporary Indigenous arts across music, dance, theatre, and film,” says Tricia Baldwin, Director of the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts. “We can all take part in thought-provoking conversations that will arise as Indigenous artists come together to define new protocols for resurgent futures.”

The exhibition, “Soundings: An Exhibition in Five Parts,” is co-curated by Candice Hopkins and Dylan Robinson, Queen’s Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Arts, and will take place at Agnes from January through April. Dylan Robinson will curate The Isabel's concurrent Ka'tarohkwi Festival of Indigenous Arts, which will include sound, performance, and installation art by leading Indigenous artists. 

“The Indigenous peoples were here long before ‘we’ came as explorers, conquerors, immigrants – however we came,” Isabel says. “They have not been well treated. Now we have at Queen’s the opportunity to celebrate and share their cultures. I believe it is important to support this.” 

The gift was made through the Isabel & Alfred Bader Fund, a Bader Philanthropy. Bader Philanthropies is a Milwaukee-based philanthropic organization dedicated to supporting causes that are important to the Bader family, including Queen’s University.

This article was first published on the Queen's Alumni website.

A welcoming website

The Inclusive Queen’s website provides information on resources, training, and support services to help all members of the Queen’s community feel welcomed. 

[Queen's University Inclusive Queen's Nour Mazloum]
Employee and student Nour Mazloum browses the Inclusive Queen's website. (University Communications)

The university’s efforts to create a more inclusive community have a new home on the web.

Visitors to the Inclusive Queen’s website can browse links to resources within the university community, learn about different initiatives underway such as the University Council on Anti-Racism and Equity (UCARE), and find a list of training courses available to help students, staff, and faculty broaden their understanding of how to foster an inclusive campus.

Creating this website was a recommendation of the Principal’s Implementation Committee on Racism, Diversity, and Inclusion (PICRDI).

“We are fortunate to have a campus community that is made up of people from all walks of life, says Teri Shearer, Deputy Provost (Academic Operations and Inclusion). “Having a greater understanding of and appreciation for different cultures is important for our staff and faculty, and for our learners as they join increasingly diverse work and study environments.”

“This site is intended for all members of the Queen’s community – whether you are seeking resources like prayer spaces, the Queen’s Inclusion and Anti-Racism Advisor, or student cultural clubs; or if you wish to further your understanding of Indigenous knowledge, employment equity, or racism and oppression,” she adds.

In addition to launching the website, the Office of the Provost and University Relations will continue to collaborate on efforts to raise awareness about inclusivity initiatives and resources on campus, as well as to communicate the university’s progress in implementing the PICRDI recommendations.

The Office of Indigenous Initiatives and University Relations are also working on a website focusing on Indigenous initiatives and reconciliation at Queen’s, to launch this academic year.

To view the new Inclusive Queen’s website, visit queensu.ca/inclusive.

Queen’s Reads book for 2018-19 unveiled

This year’s Queen’s Reads book will take the university community on a trip down the 401. 

[Queen's Reads University book Catherine Hernandez Scarborough]
Volunteers prepare copies of Scarborough for distribution during the Queen's Reads campaign. (University Communications)

This year’s Queen’s Reads book will take the university community to a place that may be familiar for some, and may challenge students, faculty, and staff to look at it through different eyes.

Scarborough by Catherine Hernandez tells the interconnected stories of members of a culturally diverse Scarborough neighbourhood, including recent immigrants, Indigenous Peoples, single parents, and children.

Queen’s Reads is an annual common reading program which seeks to engage the university community in dialogue. Every year, a selection committee comprising students, staff, and faculty members aims to choose a book by a Canadian author which covers themes that are part of ongoing conversations on campus, will engage students, and are topical in the broader Canadian context. Last year, the committee chose The Break by Indigenous author Katherena Vermette.

After evaluating a number of options, Scarborough was chosen as this year’s book. With the selection made, the Student Experience Office in the Division of Student Affairs coordinates the year-long programming. And Woo Kim, Manager of the Student Experience Office, says they have a lot planned.

“We encourage everyone to take advantage of these opportunities, even if you've only read a page - part of the campaign is about reading the book, and part of it is engaging on the topics and themes,” says Ms. Kim.

The Student Experience Office will be giving away 5,000 copies of the book to students, faculty, and staff, with the majority of copies being distributed in the first weeks of the fall term.

In addition, the team has plenty of activities planned throughout the year. There is a documentary screening and panel discussion planned for the fall, an author event with Ms. Hernandez in November, and discussion groups taking place throughout the fall and winter.

There will also be designated ‘Reading Nooks’ – physical locations across campus where the university community will be encouraged to read together – and regular blog posts on the Student Experience Office website from members of the Queen’s community writing about the book, the topics and themes, and their love of reading.

And if you cannot make it to the groups or events, you can always organize your own – like one group of staff did as part of last year’s program.

In addition to her book’s selection for this year’s edition of the Queen’s Reads program, Ms. Hernandez will also be the Writer-in-Residence for the Department of English for the fall term, focusing on creative writing. The residency is funded through the Queen’s Research Opportunities Funds - Arts Fund – Visiting Artist in Residence, as well as the Canada Council for the Arts.

[Catherine Hernandez]
Catherine Hernandez, author of Scarborough, will be the Writer-in-Residence for the Department of English this fall. (Supplied Photo) 

As part of this residency, she will be working on her next novel, Crosshairs, and organizing workshops and healing circles around LGBTQ2s and racialized communities at Queen's University, and within the larger Kingston community.

"Crosshairs is a difficult novel to write because it means engaging in difficult discussions around race, religion, and identity,” she says. “With the support of Queen's, I look forward to digging deeper into the questions, 'What price do we pay by being passive in the face of white supremacy? And what price do we pay for fighting back?'"

There will be a welcome event for Ms. Hernandez on September 21 at 2:30 pm in Watson Hall Room 517, which the Queen’s community and general public are welcome to attend.

Those seeking a copy of Scarborough should keep an eye out for the Queen’s Reads booth at the ASUS Sidewalk Sale, Queen’s in the Park, and pop-up shops at Union and University (U&U) events during Orientation Week.

The book will also be available to students at the AMS offices and the Student Experience Office in the John Deutsch University Centre, Stauffer Library, Duncan McArthur Hall, residences, and the Four Directions Aboriginal Student Centre. In addition, distance education advisors will be mailing free copies of the book to their students.

Some advanced copies have been distributed to offices on campus; staff and faculty are encouraged to share these copies within their offices.

Anyone requiring an accessible format copy of the book is asked to contact the Adaptive Technology Centre at adaptive.technology.centre@queensu.ca.

Learn more about Queen’s Reads on the Student Experience Office website.

Breathing new life into Indigenous languages

Queen's University is working with a local Indigenous cultural organization and Indigenous leaders to help with language revitalization.

[Queen's Tyendinaga Indigenous languages Haudenosaunee]
Dakota Ireland, an Oneida representative, makes notes during one of the conference's discussion sessions. (Supplied Photo)

Queen’s and Tsi Tyónnheht Onkwawén:na Language and Culture Centre played host to a historic meeting this week as six Indigenous nations met to help plan the future of their languages.

The three-day meeting and conference was part of a collaborative project between Tsi Tyónnheht Onkwawén:na and Queen’s, which began this spring and was funded by Ontario’s Ministry of Education Indigenous Languages Fund. Establishing this meeting and bringing together the Six Nations was a key milestone in the project’s overarching goals of developing community-specific plans for language revitalization.

“It’s a momentous event and a historical moment. It is the first time in our memories that members of all six language families are in one room talking about preserving our languages,” says Kanonhsyonne (Janice Hill), Director of Indigenous Initiatives.

The representatives of the six language families included learners, academics, policy makers, administrators, and teachers. The six language families of the Haudenosaunee, also known as the Iroquois Confederacy, are the Mohawk, Oneida, Onondaga, Cayuga, Seneca, and Tuscarora. The word Rotinonhsyón:ni is the Mohawk word for Haudenosaunee, while Haudenosaunee is the agreed upon Iroquois Confederacy Council term.

The agenda for the conference included discussions around how to move language beyond the classroom and language legislation, building resources such as a teacher’s association and online resources, and opportunities for group discussions.

“Queen’s is proud to be a partner on this project, which is enabling the revitalization of all of the six Rotinonhsyón:ni languages and meeting the calls to action in the national and Queen’s Truth and Reconciliation (TRC) reports,” says Gordon E. Smith, Vice-Dean (Faculty Relations) with the Faculty of Arts and Science. “We’re excited about the Rotinonhsyón:ni Language Cooperative meeting happening here at Queen’s, supporting Onkwehonwe/Rotinonhsyón:ni language family revitalization and uniting the work of these communities to share resources.”

The collaboration between Queen’s and Tsi Tyónnheht Onkwawén:na has already seen the creation of a certificate in Mohawk Language, which will be delivered in Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory starting this month. Over the next two years, the project will also develop an indexed online archive of Mohawk language resources; and will research best practices for teaching, assessing, and evaluating Indigenous language learners.

“We have come to the table in the spirit of sharing,” says Callie Hill, Director of Tsi Tyónnheht Onkwawén:na. “We are sharing knowledge, experiences, and resources for language revitalization and we are encouraging and supporting each other in revitalizing our languages”.

Some next steps for Tsi Tyónnheht Onkwawén:na, the six Rotinonhsyón:ni/Haundenosaunee groups, and Queen’s include the formation of four working groups to continue this work, as well as additional conferences.

The conference was held as the world marked the International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples

[Queen's TTO Haudenosaunee Indigenous languages conference]
Representatives from across the Haudenosaunee nation gathered in Robert Sutherland Hall for a three-day conference centred on language revitalization. (Supplied Photo)


Faculty Artist Series building upon success

[Isabel Quartet]
The Isabel String Quartet will perform three concerts as part of the 2018-19 Faculty Artist Series at the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts. (University Communications)

Hear great classical music concerts in the wonderful acoustics of the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts performed by faculty from the Dan School of Drama and Music and invited musicians.  

[Joel Quarrington]
Joel Quarrington

For the 2018-19 season, the annual Faculty Artist Series expands from four concerts to six. 

Most of the concerts are being held on Sunday afternoons at 2:30 pm and include three presentations by the Isabel String Quartet and three concerts by a variety of faculty performers. The latter concerts range from an event featuring local composers and visual artists, to a concert of two-piano music that also includes award-winning multimedia pieces, and ends a concert of French art song for baritone and piano. 

Of particular note are the first two concerts in the series. On Saturday, Sept. 15, 2018 at 7:30 pm, the Isabel Quartet is joined by double bassist, Joel Quarrington.  Quarrington, currently principal double bassist of the National Arts Centre Orchestra, is renowned for his virtuosity and expertise. In addition to playing some solo Bach on the bass, Quarrington will join the quartet in a performance of a Dvorak Quintet – a beautiful work that is not often heard in a concert setting given its unusual instrumentation.

[Matt Rogalsky]
Matt Rogalsky

The second concert on Sunday, Oct. 14 at 2:30 pm features music by Matt Rogalsky and friends. Rogalsky, one of the winners of the inaugural 2017 Kingston Mayor’s Arts Awards, is a talented and innovative composer who has been involved with many community arts groups such as the Tone Deaf Festival and the Skeleton Park Festival. Rogalsky has invited Kingston visual artists Julia Krolik and Owen Fernley to collaborate on this concert. Rounding out the program will be a new work by Queen’s Music Professor Emeritus Kristi Allik that includes video by Robert Mulder. This concert will surely be a feast for both the eyes and ears.

Single ticket prices begin at $10 for students and $20 for adults ($16 for Queen’s faculty and staff), and subscribing to any three or more concerts can generate a savings of 25 per cent. 

More information about the concerts and ticket ordering, can be found at The Isabel website, or through The Isabel Box Office between 12:30-4:30 pm, Monday to Friday at 613-533-2424

Exploring art worlds

The "Art Worlds" pilot program is a partnership between the Smith School of Business and the Agnes Etherington Art Centre.

  • [queen's agnes etherington art centre art worlds mba students Jacquelyn Coutré]
    In the first session of Art Worlds: A User’s Guide, Jacquelyn N. Coutré delves into the masterpieces of The Bader Collection and historical European art. (Photo by Tim Forbes)
  • [queen's agnes etherington art centre art worlds mba students Jacquelyn Coutré]
    Ms. Coutré, the Bader Curator and researcher of European Art, incorporates the Artists at Work exhibition into a session of Art Worlds: A User’s Guide. (Photo by Tim Forbes)
  • [queen's agnes etherington art centre art worlds mba students Jacquelyn Coutré]
    MBA students ask Ms. Coutré questions, preparing for their own presentations later this summer. (Photo by Tim Forbes)
  • [queen's agnes etherington art centre art worlds mba students Tau Lewis]
    Stonecroft Artist-in-Residence, Tau Lewis, presents her work and process during a session of Art Worlds: A User’s Guide. (Photo by Garrett Elliott)

This summer, alongside art camps and classes, the Agnes Etherington Art Centre is offering a new custom program for Smith School of Business students.

Art Worlds: A User’s Guide is a cultural enrichment series designed to provide MBA students with foundational knowledge about art, its history and purposes, and the systems through which it thrives.

Expanding on the Agnes’ Learning through Art initiatives, sessions took place in the galleries and in the David McTavish Art Study Room, augmented by a studio field trip and conversation with 2018 Stonecroft Foundation Artist-in-Residence Tau Lewis.

“This pilot program is designed to introduce the language of art, and to explore the art museum as a forum for ideas and shared encounters,” says Jan Allen, Director of the Agnes. “Through guided discussions and close examination of works of art, these students are gaining insight into how visual art circulates, inspires, and moves people. We want to empower these future business leaders to enjoy artistic culture at large, and to embrace the value of creative process in new ways.”

The program takes advantage of the Agnes collections and expertise to enrich the intense year-long MBA program. This collaboration between the Agnes and Smith was supported by David Saunders, Dean of the Smith School of Business, who sits on the board for the art centre.

“Strong business leadership is more than PowerPoints and numbers. Great leaders need to draw on both sides of the brain – the quantitative, analytical left side and the creative and intuitive right side,” says Dean Saunders. “This program, led by the excellent curators of the Agnes Etherington Art Centre, challenges our students to literally see the world differently. I have no doubt they will be stronger leaders as a result.”

In the first session, Jacquelyn N. Coutré, Bader Curator and researcher of European Art, delved into the masterpieces of The Bader Collection to explore the enduring value of Old Master paintings and their high stakes at market. The exhibition Artists at Work: Picturing Practice in the European Tradition provided a setting for discovering the ways in which the history of art is constructed, curated and mobilized.

Sunny Kerr, Curator of Contemporary Art, built on that theme to talk about the ways artists create languages of process and form in a session culminating in an encounter with artist Tau Lewis in her Ontario Hall studio.

Other sessions included Alicia Boutilier, Chief Curator and Curator of Canadian Historical Art, discussing why people collect art and how taste is nurtured, mapping out the paths that artworks take from private homes to public collections, including the role of collectors in evolving museum mandates. Ms. Allen also mapped out big-picture forces and frameworks that shape the creation, presentation, and meaning of art today. 

In the final session, to be held July 12, the tables will be turned when program participants make presentations on artworks within a chosen scenario for their instructors and special guests.  

“Our MBA instructors often encourage us to seek out diverse experiences and flex the mental muscles that enable us to approach problems with a new perspective,” says Danilo Prieto (MBA'19). “As an engineer, I felt it was important to round out my skill set with this experience – to challenge myself to truly appreciate art and creativity and how it adds value to a society.”

The 16 students who completed this initial offering each received a certificate from the Smith School of Business to complement their studies.

Faculty are encouraged to explore bringing the power of art to their programs and courses: information is available on the Agnes' website.

Agnes artist-in-residence brings in the community

During her residency, Tau Lewis has spent time with pre-teen girls to help them explore their identity. 

[Tau Lewis artist-in-residence Agnes Etherington Art Centre Queen's]
Tau Lewis, the Agnes' 2018 Stonecroft Foundation Artist-in-Residence, is working out of Ontario Hall this summer. (Photo by Garrett Elliott)

The Agnes Etherington Art Centre is welcoming a Jamaican-Canadian artist to campus this summer.

Tau Lewis is the Agnes’s 2018 Stonecroft Foundation Artist-in-Residence. During her thirteen-week stay, which started in June and ends in September, Ms. Lewis is teaming up with Kingston-based Roots and Wings, a grassroots community group that works towards making space for racialized girls in Kingston.

Through Roots and Wings activities, girls are encouraged to explore their diverse identities and are provided with learning opportunities about social justice issues in a fun, engaging, and age-appropriate way. They are encouraged to teach and share their unique skills with each other, as well as the larger community through action on social justice issues.

“Getting to be a part of the Roots and Wings program was a great privilege for me,” Ms. Lewis says. “I always feel blessed to encounter children's artworks and the process by which they create them, because you'll rarely encounter a more honest kind of storytelling. I feel honoured to work with such a talented and diverse group of young women, and happy that I'm able to contribute to something that was crucial to me as a kid, and I think in some ways helped me to arrive to where I am now.”

The link between Ms. Lewis and Roots and Wings has a Queen’s connection – Ms. Lewis visited Queen’s in 2017 and was introduced to Yasmine Djerbal, a PhD candidate in Cultural Studies. Ms. Djerbal, along with various other community members including Lulama Kotze and Michelle LaMarche, co-founded Roots and Wings, and this collaboration was formed from their discussions.

Ms. Djerbal says the collaboration was a wonderful experience for the girls.

  • [tau lewis queen's university agnes etherington art centre artist-in-residence workshop]
    A group of local pre-teen girls were invited to participate in a workshop with Tau Lewis, the 2018 Stonecroft Foundation Artist-in-Residence at the Agnes Etherington Art Centre. (Photo by Tim Forbes)
  • [tau lewis queen's university agnes etherington art centre artist-in-residence workshop]
    The workshop was offered in partnership with Roots and Wings, a grassroots community group that works towards making space for racialized girls in Kingston. (Photo by Tim Forbes)
  • [tau lewis queen's university agnes etherington art centre artist-in-residence workshop]
    On the wall behind Ms. Lewis, a sign says, "Earth without art is just Eh". (Photo by Tim Forbes)

“They were able to see and meet an artist that looked like them, that they could look up to, and maybe even aspire to become one day,” she says. “Our goal is to have our girls grow strong roots into our community, and create lifelong connections to people and organizations from which they will learn about social justice, identity, and culture, and collaborating with Ms. Lewis really exemplified the work we want to do!”

The exhibition Tau Lewis: New Work will be on view at the Agnes from August 25 through to December 2. Several programs are scheduled for fall including an artist talk; two star-studded panel discussions on Art and Black Canada; and an open workshop where Ms. Lewis will introduce her practice, drawing connections between her material choices and the thematic concerns of her work.

The Stonecroft Artist-in Residence program is generously supported by the Stonecroft Foundation for the Arts, the Queen’s University Department of Gender Studies through Katherine McKittrick, the Queen’s Arts Fund–Visiting Artist in Residence, and the Bachelor of Fine Arts (Visual Art) Program.

For more information on Ms. Lewis and her work, visit http://www.taulewis.com.

Indigenous scholars visit Queen’s for year-long fellowship

The Faculty of Arts and Science has announced the recipients of its pre-doctoral fellowships for Indigenous graduate students.

This brand new opportunity, announced in February, was designed to recognize outstanding scholarship among four Canadian Indigenous PhD candidates. The initiative will provide each fellow with an annual stipend of $34,000 and up to $3,000 for research and conference travel. In addition, each fellow will be appointed and compensated separately as a Term Adjunct to teach a half-course (three unit) university course.

Following a positive response and many worthwhile applications, the Faculty decided to expand the initiative to include a fifth scholar.

“The widespread enthusiasm for the Indigenous pre-doctoral fellowships, coupled with the intensity of the response and the high quality of the applicants, was such that we decided to award five fellowships,” says Lynda Jessup, Associate Dean (Graduate Studies) within the Faculty of Arts and Science.

During their year at Queen’s, these five scholars will each teach a course within the Faculty of Arts and Science, engage with local Indigenous peoples and communities, broaden their networks, and complete their doctoral work to receive their degree from their home institution.

The recipients are coming to Queen’s from different universities the west coast to Ottawa, and represent five distinct Indigenous cultures. Keri Cheechoo, from Long Lake #58 First Nation, says she is “incredibly honoured” to have been selected as one of the recipients.

“Wachiye (that means ‘hello’). The many positive Indigenous initiatives being undertaken at Queen’s have much to offer in terms of building community and promoting reconciliation efforts, and I am pleased to be a part of that revitalization and growth,” says Ms. Cheechoo. “I remain grateful that the “rafters have been extended”, to quote the Queen’s Truth and Reconciliation task force report, to welcome my Indigenous knowledge, my capabilities as a Cree scholar, and the ancestral teachings I bring with me. Meegwetch (thank you).”

The five scholars include:


[Scott Berthelette]
Scott Berthelette (Supplied Photo)

Scott Berthelette
Pre-Doctoral Fellow, Queen’s Department of History
PhD Candidate, University of Saskatchewan

Scott Berthelette’s doctoral research examines how French-Canadian voyageurs and coureurs de bois were instrumental intermediaries between the French State and Indigenous Peoples in the Hudson Bay Watershed.

Mr. Berthelette is Métis. 


[Keri Cheechoo]
Keri Cheechoo (Supplied Photo)

Keri Cheechoo
Pre-Doctoral Fellow, Queen’s Department of English Language and Literature
PhD Candidate, University of Ottawa

Keri Cheechoo's research questions what Indigenous women's stories reveal about public and customary practices, as well as the policies and practices of forced sterilization, and she uses an arts-based methodology in the form of poetic inquiry, along with an Indigenous conversational methodology.

Ms. Cheechoo is Cree.


[Jennifer Meness]
Jennifer Meness (Supplied Photo)

Jennifer Meness
Pre-Doctoral Fellow, Queen's Cultural Studies Program
PhD candidate in the joint Communication and Culture program through York and Ryerson Universities.

Using Anishinaabe conceptual frameworks and methodologies, Jennifer Meness' research gathers stories of experiences with Gaa-dibenjikewaach and seeks to further understand these types of relationships through the social lens of powwow participation.

Ms. Meness is Algonquin.


[Evelyn Poitras]
Evelyn Poitras (Supplied Photo)

Evelyn Poitras
Pre-Doctoral Fellow, Queen’s Department of Gender Studies
PhD Candidate, Trent University

Evelyn Poitras's research is on Nikawiy (mother) to Nitanis (daughter) narratives on the Nehiyaw Iskwew role in governance, leadership, and Treaty enforcement with particular focus on Treaty Four and Treaty Six.

Ms. Poitras is Nehiyaw Iskwew (Cree and Saulteaux).


[Adrianne Xavier]
Adrianne Xavier (Supplied Photo)

Adrianne Lickers Xavier
Pre-Doctoral Fellow, Department of Global Development Studies
PhD Candidate, Royal Roads University

Adrianne Lickers Xavier's research is an autoethnographic account examining the implementation of a food security initiative, "Our Sustenance," at Six Nations.

Ms. Lickers Xavier is Onondaga.


For more information on this new program, visit the Faculty of Arts and Science’s website.


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