On the issue of creative space: Reflections on Arts Ecology Salon #5

Over the past year or so doing creative projects in the area, I’ve dipped into Arts & Culture in Brantford; at first a toe, later a whole leg. I’ve learned a lot about the city, including the artists which constitute the creative community, and how the general public views the Arts & Culture sector. What… Continue reading On the issue of creative space: Reflections on Arts Ecology Salon #5

The Institution of Stan’s Fries: How Downtown Brantford History is Told Through French Fries

Stan's Fries at Market Square

A familiar smell has been greeting residents and visitors of Brantford’s downtown for over 50 years: the smell of freshly frying fries with just a hint of malt vinegar. To many locals, this is not only a staple of their routine, but engrained richly in their very identities. As part of exploring the stories that… Continue reading The Institution of Stan’s Fries: How Downtown Brantford History is Told Through French Fries

Shared Voice and an Empowered Arts & Culture Community: Reflections on Arts Ecology Salon #4

The diversity and creativity in the Arts & Culture community always amazes me. Unique and specialized skills combine with visionary ideas of what hasn’t yet been “done” and new spins on old favourites for stories we just can’t get enough of. Personally, I have participated in musical performances from opera to community choir, staged theatre… Continue reading Shared Voice and an Empowered Arts & Culture Community: Reflections on Arts Ecology Salon #4

Stretching the Community Theatre Envelope

Community Theatre, as the name would suggest, is about community. A gathering of kindred spirits who thrive on the high-octane thrill of putting on a show. Community Theatre is a stir fry recipe of enthusiastic people who volunteer their time to act, direct, write, help back stage or push buttons on a sound or lighting… Continue reading Stretching the Community Theatre Envelope

“Arts Without Permission” or Seven Tales from the Field: Notes on Bob Egan’s VIA Address at Salon #3

Something which he believes does not happen to many people, Bob Egan undertook a dramatic career and lifestyle change in midlife. He “lived out his dreams being on the road” as a musician with Blue Rodeo, but recently retired from playing to work as Manager of Community Connections and Development at the Kitchener Public Library and… Continue reading “Arts Without Permission” or Seven Tales from the Field: Notes on Bob Egan’s VIA Address at Salon #3

“Being Unrealistic” or Innovation Through Collective Imagination: Notes on Dr. Kathryn Carter’s Keynote at Salon #3

Appalshop

The key point of Dr. Kathryn Carter’s talk is to implore us to “be unrealistic” when it comes to building a future for “Arts & Culture” in Brantford/Brant. By letting our imaginations flourish, we can build the sort of creative ecology that we want as artists: one that nurtures us to create and innovate, and… Continue reading “Being Unrealistic” or Innovation Through Collective Imagination: Notes on Dr. Kathryn Carter’s Keynote at Salon #3

On Co-existence and Collaboration: Arts and Economy in Ontario

It is no secret that the cultural industries sector greatly contributes to the vibrancy and economy of our communities. In Ontario the direct contribution of culture industries to GDP was $27.7 billion in Ontario in 2014, which represents 4.1% of provincial GDP; a figure which is ten times larger than the sports estimate. Evidence demonstrates that… Continue reading On Co-existence and Collaboration: Arts and Economy in Ontario

Towards an Ecological Understanding of the Arts

The term “arts ecology” has been explored in recent years as way to understand the changing arts environment in a post-social reality. Artists and arts organizations face many challenges around financial sustainability, resource scarcity, and shifting audience preferences. Recently, scholars in performance studies, anthropology, economic development, and other social sciences, as well as government and… Continue reading Towards an Ecological Understanding of the Arts