Monthly Archives: December 2011

Happy Gung Haggis Hogmanay 2012

Scottish Hogmanay New Year
+ Chinese-Canadian History

Gung Haggis Fat Choy


2009_Scotland_ThisIsWhoWeAre 098

Todd Wong in Edinburgh, at the 2009 Scottish Parliament display for This Is Who We Are: Scots in Canada

It seems like only last year, when I was in Scotland for my first visit…
Actually,
I was in Edinburgh, Scotland for Homecoming Finale on November 30, 2009 – now two years ago.  Since then, I have lots lots more about both Scottish and Chinese New Year traditions.

Right now I am in Vernon BC, while planning the 2012 Gung Haggis Fat Choy Robbie Burns Chinese New Year event for January 22nd 2012, as well as a smaller dinner for Victoria on January 28th.  There will also be large dinner in Seattle organized by my friend Bill McFadden with the Seattle Caledonian and St. Andrew's Society.  Right now.  I am listening to BBC Radio Scotland through the internet, as I have done many times over the years.  Midnight in Scotland is 4pm Pacific Standard Time, so this gives me plenty of time to relax and enjoy the New Year's Eve Day… as the sun starts to set over the ridge across Kalamalka Lake. 

Tonight I am going to Silver Star Ski Resort.  We like to watch the 8pm torchlight parade down the ski runs, followed by a torchlight parade.  You can see my pictures from past years here:

dec 31 Silver Star Mountain

Dec 31 2010 Silver Star Mountain

photo


It can be cold wearing kilts in winter, but here are Joe McDonald, Bruce Clark, Todd Wong and Xavier MacDonald at Dr. Sun Yat Sen Gardens for the Winter Solstice Lantern Festival.  Joe, Xavier and myself with The Black Bear Rebels music ensemble helped to create a Winter Solstice Music Ceilidh on December 21st for the event.


DSC_5772_143286 - end of day jam session by FlungingPictures

Members of the Gung Haggis Fat Choy Pipes & Drums – included Dan Huang of the Kelowna Pipes & Drums

New
years are new beginnings, and every culture celebrates them differently
and similarly.  That's the great thing about being in a multicultural
nation such as Canada.  All of the world's cultures live inside our
borders and we can freely share and partake of each other's cultures. 
Yes, there are still racist bigots and idiots out there, and that is why
it is so important for us to embrace cultural harmony and help to build
a country we want to be proud of.

The origin of Gung Haggis Fat Choy
started when I was asked to participate in the 1993 Robbie Burns Day
celebration at Simon Fraser University.  In 1998, I decided to
host a dinner for 16 guests that blended Robbie Burns Day(January 25th)
with Chinese lunar New Year (late January to early February).  Now the
dinner event that has grown to an size of almost 500 guests, a CBC
television special, an annual poetry night
at the Vancouver Public Library, a recreation event at Simon Fraser
University…. and media stories around the world!


Hogmanay is the Scottish New Year's Eve, and it is celebrated on New Year's Eve with a Grand Dinner. It can be very similar to Chinese New Year's in many ways:


1) Make lots of noise. 
Chinese like to burn firecrackers, bang drums and pots to scare the
ghosts and bad spirits away.  Scots will fire off cannons, sound
sirens, bang pots and make lots of noise, I think just for the excuse
of making noise.

2) Pay off your debts. 
Chinese like to ensure that you start off the New Year with no debts
hanging onto your personal feng shui.  I think the Scots do the
same but especially to ensure that they aren't paying anymore interest.

3) Have lots of good food.  Eat lots and be merry.  Both Scots and Chinese enjoy eating, hosting their friends and visiting their friends.


4) Party on dude!  In
Asia, Chinese New Year celebrations will go on for days, lasting up to
a week!  Sort of like Boxing week sales in Canada.  In
Scotland, the Scots are proud partyers and are well known for making
parties last for days on end.

Come to think about it… the above traditions can be found in many
cultures… I guess the Scots and Chinese are more alike than different
with lots of other cultures too!

What to expect at the 2012 Gung Haggis Fat Choy Robbie Burns Chinese New Year Dinner


What to expect at the Gung Haggis Fat Choy 2012 Dinner…


DSC_3644_103213 - view from middle of the hall by FlungingPictures. picture by Patrick Tam from the 2009 Gung Haggis Fat Choy Dinner

Special for 2012
Every year, we invite new people to perform and co-host. For 2012, there is Chinese New Year theme emerging… because midnight will be the start of Chinese New Year's Day, Year of the Dragon!!!

Tetsuro Shigematsu
– Co-hosting duties are the responsibility of the inscrutable and irreverent samurai expert from the tv show “Deadliest Warrior” – better known as a comedian, writer and film maker.
  Tetsuro
himself is very intercultural, very Gung Haggis.  While he is technically of
Japanese ancestry, he was born in London England, and raised in Quebec. 
I first got to know Tetsuro back in
the early 2000's when he was a member of the sketch comedy group, The
Hot Sauce Posse.  Soon after he was the new radio host for CBC Radio's
“The Round Up” replacing Bill Richardson.

Fred Wah is the just announced Parliamentary Poet Laureate.  He is winner of both the Governor's General Prize for Poetry (Diamond Grill) and BC Book Prize (Is A Door). Fred is a true Gung Haggis-Canadian with both Scottish and Chinese ancestry, all dominated by his Swedish mother.

Dr. Jan Walls is beloved in both Chinese and Academic and other circles.  He is a scholar of Chinese language, as well as a former cultural attache for the Canadian Embassy in Beijing.  We love him because he performs the ancient tradition of Chinese clapper tales.  We are daring Dr. Walls to set the poetry of Robert Burns to the rapping beat of Chinese bamboo clappers.

Other
performers include Gung Haggis Pipes & Drums, and the Black Bear Rebels celtic ceilidh ensemble… 
More on them in later posts…

The Arrival

What are you wearing?  Kilts and tartans, as well as Chinese jackets and cheong-sam dresses are preferred. But our guests are dressed both formal and casual – be comfortable, be outrageous, be yourself.  If you want to wear a Chinese jacket or top, paired with a kilt or mini-kilt… that is great! 

We might have a kilt fashion show for 2012… we might have a Chinese cheong-sam fashion show… we will see what happens.  One year, one guest dressed up like a Chinese mandarin scholar.  Another year, two guests dressed up as cowboys.

Arrive Early: 

The doors will open at 5:00 pm, All tables are reserved, and all seating is placed in the
order that they were ordered.

If
you bought your tickets through Firehall Arts Centre, come to the
reception marked Will Call under the corresponding alphabet letters. 
We
have placed you at tables in order of your purchase.  Somebody who
bought their ticket in December will be at a table closer to the stage
then somebody who bought it in mid January, or on the day before the event.  We think this
is fair.  If you want to sit close for next year – please buy your ticket
early.

If
you are at a table with one of the sponsoring organizations: Historic
Joy Kogawa House, ACWW/Ricepaper Magazine, Gung Haggis dragon boat team -
then somebody will meet you at the reception area and guide you to your
table.

The Bar is open at 5:00 and Dinner Start time is 6:00

We
expect a rush before the posted 6:00pm
dinner
time. We have asked that the 1st appetizer platter be placed on the
table soon after 6pm.  Once this is done, we will start the Piping in of
our performers and head table.  We sing “O Canada” from the stage, and
give welcome to our guests. “Calling of the Clans” is done for sponors, and reserved table clans – if you would like to have your clan or group announced, please reserve a table of 10.

Buy Your Raffle Tickets:



Please
buy
raffle tickets… this is how we generate our fundraising to support
this organizations dedicated to multiculturalism and cultural harmony. 
Food prices have been rising, but we have
purposely keep our admission costs low so that they are
affordable and the dinner can be attended by more
people.  Children's tickets are subsidized so that we can include
them in the audience and be an inclusive family for the evening.
We have some great door
and raffle prizes lined up.  Lots of books (being the writers we
are), gift certificates and theatre tickets + other surprises.

FREE Subscription for Ricepaper Magazine:

Everybody is eligible for a subscription to RicePaper Magazine,
(except children). This is our thank you gift to you for attending our
dinner. And to add value ($20) to your ticket. Pretty good deal, eh?
Ricepaper Magazine
is Canada's best journal about Asian Canadian arts and
culture, published by
Asian Canadian Writers' Workshop,

This dinner is the primary fundraising event for:

The Gung Haggis Fat Choy Dragon Boat team
continues to promote multiculturalism through
dragon boat paddling events. Some paddlers wear kilts, and we have been
filmed for German, French, and Canadian television documentaries + other

Since 2001, Asian Canadian Writers' Workshop,
has been a partner in this remarkable dinner event. ACWW works actively
to give a voice to ermerging writers.  ACWW is the publisher of Ricepaper Magazine.

Historic Joy Kogawa House committee joined our family of recipients in 2006, during the campaign to save Joy Kogawa's childhood home from demolition.  The Land
Conservancy of BC
stepped in to fundraise in 2005 and purchase Kogawa House
in 2006 and turn it into a National literary landmark and treasure for all
Canadians. In 2009, we celebrated our inaugural Writer-in-Residence program.


The FOOD

This year haggis dim sum appetizers will
again
be served. Haggis is mixed into the Pork Su-mei dumplings which we introduced a few years. This year we are adding vegetarian pan-fried turnip cake to represent “Neeps and Tatties.”  Our signature dish is our deep-fried haggis won-tons served with a special sauce.

Soon
after 6:00 pm the dinner formalities begin. People
are seated, and the Piping in of the musicians and
hosts begins.  We will lead a singalong of Scotland the Brave and give
a good welcome to our guests, and have the calling of the clans – all
the reserved tables and large parties of 10.  This is a tradition at
many Scottish ceilidhs (kay-lees), or gatherings.

From then on… a new dish will appear somewhere around 15 minutes -
quickly followed by one of our co-hosts introducing a poet or musical
performer.  Serving 40 tables within 5 minutes, might not work
completely, so please be patient.  We will encourage our guests
and especially the waiters to be quiet while the performers are on stage.
Then for the 5 minute intermissions, everybody can talk and make noise
before they have to be quiet for the performers again.

Check this video from past year's Dinner


07:59 - 

The Performances

Expect the unexpected:  This year's dinner event is full of surprises. Even I don't know what is going to happen.  The idea is to recreate the spontaneity of the very
first dinner for 16 people back in 1998 – but with 400+ guests.  For
that very first dinner, each guest was asked to bring a song or a poem to share.  I
don't want to give anything away right now as I
prefer the evening to unfold with a sense of surprise and
wonderment.  But let it be known that we have an incredible
array of talent for the evening. 


Poetry
by Robbie Burns and Chinese Canadian poets.  What will it be?  We often
like to read “Recipe for Tea” – a poem by Jim Wong-Chu, about the
trading of tea from Southern China to Scotland

Our non-traditional reading of the “Address to the
Haggis” is always a crowd pleaser.  But
this year, audience members might also be reading a different Burns poem to
tie their tongues around the gaelic tinged words.  Will it be “A
Man's A Man for All That,” “To a Mouse,”
My Luv is Like a Red Red Rose,” or maybe even “Tam O-Shanter?”

The evening will wrap up somewhere
between 9:00 and
9:30 pm, with the singing of Auld Lang Syne – we start with a verse in Mandarin
Chinese, then sing in English or Scottish. Then we will socialize further until 10pm.  People will
leave with smiles on their faces and say to
each other, “Very Canadian,”  “Only in Vancouver could something
like this happen,” or “I'm telling my friends.”

Tickets now on sale
through Firehall Arts Centre

https://tickets.firehallartscentre.ca/TheatreManager/1/tmEvent/tmEvent526.html

Tetsuro Shigematsu returns as co-host to Gung Haggis Fat Choy Dinner

Tetsuro Shigematsu (actor/writer/comedian/former CBC radio host) will
be returning to co-host the Gung Haggis Fat Choy dinner.

photo


Tetsuro Shigematsu (centre) tells wild and crazy stories about co-hosts Toddish McWong (left) and Jenna Chow (right), as Todd and Jenna prepare to read the poem “Recipe for Tea” composed by Jim Wong-Chu, one of our traditional Gung Haggis Fat Choy poems – photo Lydia Nagai

We love
Tetsuro, and he always brings lots of great energy and enthusiasm to the
stage.  He is a very talented entertainer with a gift for the gab.  He is comfortable with a large audience.  And outrageous when he is old friends with his co-host and fellow stage performers.

Tetsuro himself is very intercultural, very Gung Haggis.  While he is of Japanese ancestry, he was born in London England, and raised in Quebec.  His wife is Persian… He speaks Persian as well as English, French and Japanese…  And his beautiful spirited children are Japanese-Persian-Canadians.

I first got to know Tetsuro back in the early 2000's when he was a member of the sketch comedy group, The Hot Sauce Posse.  Soon after he was the new radio host for CBC Radio's “The Round Up” replacing Bill Richardson.

In February, Tetsuro was a speaker for TedX – the topic sounds soooo Gung Haggis.  Chinese in Kilts?  A walking Oxymoron?

TEDxTerrytalks 2010 – Tetsuro Shigematsu – The Awesomeness of Your Contradiction

www.youtube.com/watch?v=EHlSuPe0imA22 Feb 201117 minUploaded by TEDxTalks
Stick out your thumb. That's the thickness of my press package. If you flip through it, fanning past you would

This past summer Tetsuro has been very busy.  He hosted the Asian Comedy Night by Vancouver Asian Canadian Theatre in June.

But in August, I saw Tetsuro in the play Salmon Row, about the history of the Steveston community in Richmond.  It was a brilliant play that told the history of BC and the salmon and cannery industry which also focused on the interactions of the non-White communities.  The audience witnessed the effects of the provincial legislation against Chinese workers such as the head tax and Exclusion Act, against the First Nations workers such as the Potlatch Law and Residential Schools, and against the Japanese fisherman such as reduction of fishing licenses, and the internment during WW2.  Tetsuro did an incredible job, playing multiple roles and

For 2012, we hope to get this UK born example of “Sexy Asian
Man” (as featured in Ricepaper Magazine) to wear a kilt and show us his
legs!!!

Enjoy this clips from Tetsuros's video website www.shiggy.com

Racism?


History of the World Part 1


China VS Japan – Who is Smarter


Thumbnail

UBC's Way Too Asian, Macleans

This is the video that went viral – a response to the Maclean's article “Too Asian?” – As
seen in the National Post, Global Television, Vancouver Sun, Geist
Magazine, Epoch Times, Vancouver Observer, etc. 

Tickets now on sale
through Firehall Arts Centre

https://tickets.firehallartscentre.ca/TheatreManager/1/tmEvent/tmEvent526.html

WINTER SOLSTICE CEILIDH in Chinatown

Kilts & Ceilidh Music will take over
the Dr. Su
n Yat Sen Chinese Gardens

for the Winter Solstice Lantern Festival\

image

Oh look – a teapot ad cup lantern set… There will be incredible lanterns everywhere…  speaking of which… I wonder if I can get a “kilt lantern”.  The18th Annual Winter Solstice Lantern Festival, in partnership with Secret Lantern Society.

I am very excited to be part of the 18th Annual Winter Solstice Lantern Festival this year. 
The Black Bear Rebels Ceilidh Music group will be playing traditional Celtic
& Scottish songs.  I have been playing my accordion with them for 2
years now, and they haven't stopped inviting me back, we have lots of fun, so I
must be doing something right. 

So we thought it would be great to bring this fun, and songs to share with the
Winter Solstice Lantern Festival.  And the chance to wear kilts in the
Chinese Classical Gardens just seemed like a very Gung Haggis type of thing to
do.

Organized & produced by the Secret Later Society, their artistic director
and founder is Naomi Singer – whom I first met when we were both awarded the BC
Community Achievement Award
.  Since then, we thought it would be great
to participate in each other's events.  Naomi has helped out with last
year's Gung Haggis Fat Choy Dinner (secretly of course)… and while I have
attended past Winter Solstice Lantern Festival Events at The Roundhouse
Community Cetre, Granville Island ad Chinatown – this is the first time I will
be a performer!

We will be performing 2 sets in the Hall of 100 Rivers:

6:30-7:30pm
8:00 to 9:00pm


Please wear kilts if you have them – we will do a photo op for 6:15 or 7:45

Here is the full schedule

6:00 pm Procession
 
Procession from Strathcona Community Centre to Dr.
Sun Yat-Sen Garden
Russell
Shumsky & Friends (drummers); Procession leader: Terry Hunter
 
 
Zodiac Courtyard
 
6:30 – 7:00pm             Russell
Shumsky & Friends (drummers)
 
 
Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese
Garden
 
Hall of 100 Rivers
6:30 – 7:30pm             The
Black Bear Rebels                        
           
7:30 – 8:00pm             The
Real Treble Makers Choir                      
8:00 – 9:00pm             The
Black Bear Rebels                                              
9:00 – 9:30pm             The
Real Treble Makers Choir                      
 
Southern courtyard
7:30 – 8:15pm            Drum
Syndicate                                          
8:45 – 9:30pm            Drum
Syndicate                                          
 
Scholars Study
6:00 – 10:00pm            Replay
Your Tea With Me                                             
 
China Maple Hall
6:00 – 10:00pm            Community
Lantern with the Community Arts Council                                     
 
Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Park
 
6:30 – 7:30pm             Saul
Berson & Paul Blaney – jazz duo
7:30 – 8:00pm 
           
Break
8:00 – 9:00pm             Saul
Berson & Paul Blaney – jazz duo
 

2012 Tickets now on sale for Gung Haggis Fat Choy Robbie Burns Chinese New Year Dinner on sale next week

Tickets for
Gung Haggis Fat Choy
Robbie Burns Chinese
New Year
now on sale
through Firehall Arts Centre


https://tickets.firehallartscentre.ca/TheatreManager/1/tmEvent/tmEvent526.html

CULTURE: Our Performers create something special for us every year with
traditional and contemporary performances featuring everything
in-between and beyond!

FOOD: A quirky fusion/mix/buffet of Scottish Canadian and Chinese Canadian culture 10 course Chinese banguet dinner

January 22nd is Chinese New Year's Eve.
The 2012 Dinner is going to be special.

There
are surprises in store… so telling you who is coming would be like
reading the fortune cookie, before cracking it open… or without having
the wonderful 8 course dinner that precedes dessert.

information on performers is presently top secret and will be revealed on the website www.gunghaggis.com

Floata Restaurant # 400 – 180 Keefer St
Doors open at 5:30. Dinner & entertainment start at 6:00pm.

Please call the Firehall Arts Centre for tickets 604.689.0926

$65 Regular (+ $5 service charges/ $6 online)
$50 Student (+ $5 service charges/ $6 online)
$40 Children (+ $5 service charges/ $6 online -13 years or younger)

$625 Table of 10 (+ service fees) – Please call the Firehall Arts Centre to book for Tables of 10.

Tickets can be picked up at the Firehall Arts Centre during office hours before Jan 20.
Or picked up at the door at Floata Restaurant 5:30pm January 22.


Gung Haggis Deep-fried haggis wonton from Nanaimo's Tasty Wok restaurant… the best we have ever had!  Taking Haggis to the next level of culinary enlightenment!

stay tuned for announcements!

Here are some videos from past years events – special thanks to videographers

2010-01 – Gung Haggis Fat ChoyHaggis Rap

Robert Burns : 'Address to a Haggis' 1. Fair fa' your honest, sonsie face, Great chieftain o' the puddin-race! Aboon them a' ye tak your place

Gung Haggis Fat Choy Dinner 2011 GHFC

The haggis is introduced and addressed to the dinner guests at the annual Gung Haggis Fat Choy Burns supper in Vancouver, Canada.

Gung Haggis Fat Choy dragon boat team celebrates 2011

Gung Haggis Fat Choy dragon boat team celebrates 2011


- photo by Lisa Venables on Dave Samis' camera

Gung Haggis paddlers paddle neck and neck against each other in the Ft. Langley Cranberry Festival Canoe Regatta on Oct 8th 2011.  Both teams are battling for 3rd place in the B Division Final, trying to pull ahead of each other for bragging rights over each other.  Both teams finished in the top half of 24 teams, finishing 11th and 12th overall.  The Gung Haggis Flying Cranberries on the left had 4 rookies and and was anchored by seasoned paddling friends from the Eye of the Dragon team.  The Gung Haggis Firey Chili boat on the right had some of our more experienced paddlers with 2 rookies, combined with experienced paddling friends.  It was an exciting race final that celebrated the friendship of beginner and veteran paddlers, helping and supporting each other, in one of our favorite races of the year.

I am very proud and happy with the Gung Haggis Fat Choy dragon boat team.  It has been 10 years since the inception of the team in 2002.  Back then we only did two races a year, the Alcan Dragon Boat Festival and its regatta two weeks preceding.  The team had initially begun as the Celebration Team in 1997 which I had also founded and coached, and was renamed in 2002 because: 1) to give the team a new bring more sense of identity with multiculturalism and 2) bring more recognition to the fledgling Gung Haggis Fat Choy Robbie Burns Chinese New Year Dinner.

The Gung Haggis Fat Choy dragon boat team finished the last paddling event of the year last week with a paddle down Harrison River from Harrison Hot Springs. 

We started paddling in March – following the Gung Haggis Fat Choy Robbie Burns Dinner – which the team is named after.  Both created by Coach Todd Wong, to celebrate multiculturalism.  The dinner does it with poetry, music and food.  We celebrate by paddling and eating

We paddled on Burrard Inlet for the Lotus Club regatta.  It is a tradition for us to start our season by racing in May at the Barnet Marine Park.  My first-ever dragon boat practice in 1993, was here at the Lotus Club as a spare paddler for the Headliners dragon boat team.  I am always glad to support the Lotus Club, and we have many friends at Lotus.  Too bad, the weather was so wet and rainy that we could not bring out our Chinese dragon and lion for ceremonial dances.


We practiced in False Creek 2X week – Sunday 11am and Wed 6pm

Debbie (black shirt and red tartan head band) leads warm-up at the big Rio TintoAlcan drago boat festival in Jun.  Debbie started as one of our youngest paddlers, and is now an assistant coach and team leader.  We raced in the Rec E Final for medals, and came a very close 4th – just missing a medal by split seconds.

We had 3 paddlers from France on our team: Anne, Leo and Alice. Beside me in a red team shirt is Aidan, this season's rookie of the year – male.

2011 Steveston Dragon<br />
Boat Festival
photo courtesy of Philip Chin 
http://philflash.smugmug.com/Events/2011–Dragon-Boat-Festival/18654179_Grpt6V#1456365323_6wTzNTj

We went to the Steveston Dragon Boat Festival in August.  It was the hottest day yet of a damp
cold summer, and 37
dragon boat teams came to Steveston to enjoy the balmy 25 degree
temperature by
the sea.  The 2nd annual
Steveston Dragon Boat Festival was set at the Britannia Historic
Shipyard, located
just East of Steveston Village.  After 3 races, we came 3rd in the C Division Consolation.


- photo Deb Martin

We always enter two teams at the Ft. Langley Canoe Regatta for Cranberry Festival.  Gung Haggis Fiery Chilis had some of our veteran paddlers and paddling friends.  Steered by Todd Wong (myself), and captained by lead stroke Karl Castillo.  2nd seat is Michelle and Dave, 3rd seat is Carly and Tracey (both from Flight Centre team), 4th seat is Aidan and Steve, 5th seat is Remus and Caroline.


- photo Deb Martin

Gung Haggis Flying Cranberries was steered by steered by our friend Harvey, and anchored by Johnny and Maggie in seat 5 – all from the Eye of the Dragon team.  It was captained by lead stroke Debbie.  2nd seat is Xavier and Keng, 3rd seat is Sara and Gerard (in Sara's first race), 4th seat is Leo and Christian (both promising rookies).


Both teams smile together for a picture with our additional paddlers Lisa Venables - photo Deb Martin

We dressed up for a Halloween's Eve Day paddle to Granville Island

\
- photo Dave Samis on Todd Wong's camera

Deb and Debbie had big smiles, as the paddled down the Harrison River on Nov 27th, Grey Cup Sunday. It was our last official paddling event of the season.  Last year, some of our paddlers joined me on some of the final days of the 5 day “Paddle for Wild Salmon” from Hope to Vancouver.  We wanted to recognize the salmon migrations on the Harrison River, and the bald eagles that feed on them.  Our idea was to paddle and drift pass the eagles feeding on the spawned out salmon – but we ran into a strong headwind that slowed down our travel speed.  After paddling almost 4 km, we turned back to the Harrison Lake.  “A grand failure” was what rookie paddler Xavier called it, while we ate dinner in Agassiz while watching the 2nd half of the Grey Cup Football Game. 

Shirley Bear is coming to Kogawa House

Shirley Bear is coming to Kogawa House

Sunday December 4th 2pm
Historic Joy Kogawa House
1450 West 64th Ave.

Shirley
Bear (L) shakes hands with Governor General David Johnston after being
awarded the rank of Member in the Order of Canada at Rideau Hall in
Ottawa November 4, 2011. Photo credit: REUTERS/Chris Wattie


Join
writer-in-residence Susan Crean for her conversation with Shirley Bear,
activist, visual artist, and elder of the Maliseet First Nation.
Shirley Bear’s writing includes an essay in the third volume of the
anthology of writing from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission edited
by Ashok Mathur. Two additional pieces are considered essential
statements on her art and spiritual philosophy. The first is the opening
piece in her book Virgin Bones (2006). The second is her curatorial
statement accompanying the exhibition Changers: A Spiritual Renaissance
(1989). In November 2011, Shirley Bear was inducted as a Member of the
Order of Canada. She lives on the Tobique Reserve (Negootkook) in New
Brunswick.

“Artists are the movers and changers of the world.
They have always been revolutionaries, creating change in thought and style
within their societies.”
—Shirley Bear, Changers: A Spiritual
Renaissance, Curatorial Statement

Historic Joy Kogawa House,
1450 West 64th Avenue, Vancouver

Sunday, December 4, 2 to 4pm

Admission by donation, with all proceeds to our
writer-in-residence program.

Please join us!See
more

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