Institution & Community

Triptych 2013, Hashtags 2016

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This work continues through the accompanying hash tags. Though there is humour in the use of appropriating text that was originally written by a certain individual in a specific context, this is a serious critical approach to (different meanings of) industry, language and physical positioning of idea in space.

[Podcast #9] Interview with #hamont Heritage Activist Graham Crawford

Listen to the Audio Podcast here (also available on iTunes)

I had the honour and pleasure of interviewing Silver Jubilee Medal recipient Graham Crawford at his HIStory & HERitage Museum storefront space. Crawford is a hero to some and a thorn in the side to others with his outspoken views on city business and priorities. Retired from a very successful run in the corporate world, he perhaps is the best example of the methodical and intelligent activist who vexes the myth of the malcontent and uninformed activist that seemingly is applied to anyone who speaks out in this community.

When I first moved to Hamilton, Ontario three years ago, Graham’s storefront window full of “culture jamming” images and commentary was an intriguing and accessible point of entry to learn about this city in transition. During this interview, I try to get an overview from Crawford on what makes Hamilton architecture so special, some of the current problems with the political leadership and where Hamilton is going next.

The interview goes for an hour and a half, and could of gone on for another hour and a half. I hope you enjoy.

(Bonus: Fellow Silver Jubilee Recipient Matt Jelly art included below)

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The last days of Sanford Avenue School – a raw video walk around

It was a cold and windy evening…

This heritage worthy building we fought for is now in mid-demolition and I am not sure how much longer there will be any structure left. It really was suddenly cold and windy, but I felt the urgency to document this last stand of one of the last of the great Barton Village classic buildings.

This is pretty raw footage of me walking around the building. I do make a brief statement at the beginning, but this is for reference for … future use. Hopefully, we’ve made a difference overall in Hamilton for other communities going forward.

Sanford Avenue School was a very special heritage building, built in 1932 during the great depression. One of the gems of a notoriously poor neighbourhood, this is the sort of structure that is attractive for a very wide range of opportunities including a college, a community centre or health facility. Despite well documented flaws in the public consultation process and the demolition / heritage process, the HWDSB, the City of Hamilton and then the Government of Ontario failed the future interests of  the Barton Village community and allowed the first 100% steel framed building in Canada to be sold as scrap. No public interest from developers was allowed to be entertained.

For the record, below is a list of  trustees who voted to allow Sanford Avenue School to be demolished, and not to allow any alternatives to be presented by private or non-governmental organizational interest. Also included on this list of “Heritage & Community Shame” are the City and Provincial elected officials without whose express support and approval this tragedy could not have happened.

At the time of this posting, there is no secured funding or concrete plans for any development of the site into a park, soccer field or Recreation Complex expansion.  The most frustrating part for most of us? There would of been enough room for all of this if they had agreed to re-arrange parking instead of demolishing this beautiful structure that would have served nicely economic tool for revitalization. There is a need for new leadership in Hamilton, and the following elected officials should not trusted with public office again:

Ward 3 Councilor 

Bernie Morelli

Hamilton Wentworth District School Board Chair

Tim Simmons

HWDSB Trustees:

Bob Barlow

Todd White

Lillian Orban

Wes Hicks

Jessica Brennan

Karen Turkstra

Ray Mulholland

(Former) Liberal Education Minister

Laurel Broten

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friend, fellow heritage activist and Photographer Joanna St. Jacques

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See also http://hamiltonsusualsuspects.blogspot.ca/?m=1 for more photos and discussion

reminder: Oct 13th artist talk & tour 1pm @ Barton Village, Hamilton

Join artist Christopher Healey for a talk and guided tour of the project starting at Woodlands Park on Saturday, October 13th, from 1pm to 2pm.

“(Project)ions of Community” A augmented-reality mobile device art installation throughout Barton Village

[Hamilton, Ont] New media installation projects scenes and sounds onto neighbourhood from another urban village – Parkdale, Toronto. Artist offers free public talk and guided tour of the work starting at Woodlands Park on Saturday, October 13th, from 1pm to 2pm.

Using an internet connected iphone or android mobile device installed with the free app “Aurasma Lite”, certain areas and angles throughout this neighbourhood will activate a work by local resident and artistChristopher Healey. For example, standing on the north-east corner of Wentworth and Barton and facing west is a “trigger image” that will bring up a video overlay of Parkdale from a similar vantage point. The contrast between the two communities can be disorienting.

More about Aurasma technology can be found via this presentation at TED Talks. Though a mobile device is not required for attendance, those who want to participate fully in the experience are advised to download this free app beforehand from your App Store or Google Play.

Maps, trigger images, a video demo, download links and more information is available at http://www.projectionsofcommunity.chrishealey.name

See the original press release here.

Media contact:
Chris Healey
email

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Interview with artist Paul Elia, an artist based in Hamilton, Ontario

ALP’s choice for
ART TO SEE THIS WEEKEND:
RustBelt: New work by Paul Elia
September 10-24, 2010.
Socald Studio Gallery
244 James Street North
Hamilton ON

Having met Paul a year ago at one of his Queen Street W exhibits, I was new to Toronto and excited to ask him about Toronto’s art scene. What I got was a tip-off about a little place nearby called Hamilton and a good sense of how passionate this digital print artist is about architecture and community.

Paul is a heritage whisperer of sorts, and his civic vision is super-simple and super-detailed – urban decay brings artists, and artists renew neighborhoods in neglect. I guess that’s why he convinced me to move to Hamilton.

artist website http://www.wrecovery.com/

Socald Gallery Facebook fanpage http://www.facebook.com/#!/group.php?gid=116045891768654&ref=ts