Orion Series presents Kade L. Twist

The Orion
Lecture Series in Fine Arts

Through the generous support of the Orion Fund in Fine Arts, the Faculty of Fine Arts, University of Victoria, is pleased to present:

Kade L. Twist

Visiting interdisciplinary artist 

7:30pm (PST) Wednesday, January 11, 2023

Room A162, Visual Arts building + streaming online

 Free & open to the public

Click here for the Zoom session 

 

Presented by UVic’s Department of Visual Arts

For more information on this lecture please email: visualarts@uvic.ca

Our first Orion Visiting Artist of 2023 is award-winning interdisciplinary artist Kade L. Twist: citizen of the Cherokee Nation, professor at LA’s Otis College of Art & Design and co-founder of the interdisciplinary Postcommodity artist collective. Working with video, sound, interactive media, text and installation environments, Twist’s art examines the unresolved tensions between market-driven systems, consumerism and American Indian cultural self-determination. 

Join us for this free talk at 7:30pm Wed Jan 11 in the Visual Arts building room A162. You can also watch the talk live via Zoom.

About Kade Twist

A US Artist Klein Fellow for Visual Arts (2015) and recipient of the Native Writers Circle First Book Award, Kade Twist has exhibited work nationally and internationally both individually and as part of Postcommodity.

Postcommodity’s work has been included in the Sydney Biennale, Whitney Biennial, Carnegie International and documenta 14, as well as numerous solo exhibitions including the Art Institute of Chicago Museum, San Francisco Art Institute, LAXArt, Scottsdale Museum of Art, Remai Modern Museum and their historic land art installation Repellent Fence at the US/Mexico border in Arizona/Sonora.

Image to the right: Postcommodity’s 2020 installation, “Let Us Pray For the Water Between Us” (Minneapolis Institue of Art, courtesy of Postcommodity & Bokley Gallery). 

 

About the Orion Fund

Established through the generous gift of an anonymous donor, the Orion Fund in Fine Arts is designed to bring distinguished visitors from other parts of Canada—and the world—to the University of Victoria’s Faculty of Fine Arts, and to make their talents and achievements available to faculty, students, staff and the wider Greater Victoria community who might otherwise not be able to experience their work.

The Orion Fund also exists to encourage institutions outside Canada to invite regular faculty members from our Faculty of Fine Arts to be visiting  artists/scholars at their institutions; and to make it possible for Fine Arts faculty members to travel outside Canada to participate in the academic life of foreign institutions and establish connections and relationships with them in order to encourage and foster future exchanges.

Free and open to the public  |  Seating is limited (500 Zoom connections) |  Visit our online events calendar at www.events.uvic.ca

Giving Tuesday supports Student Impact Fund

Tuesday, November 29 is Giving Tuesday—the world’s largest generosity movement! Today, Fine Arts is asking our creative community to help us raise funds for the Fine Arts Community Impact Award—and we’re fortunate enough to have a generous donor offering to match all donations up to $1,000!

“In the arts, we put a lot of ourselves into our work because we love it,” says 2022 recipient & current Music student Isolde Roberts-Welby (seen here with additional 2022 recipient Tori Jones and Dean Allana Lindgren). “This award means that I can spend less time at work and more time pursuing opportunities and projects that are deeply fulfilling.”

Donate here to our Student Community Impact Award! 

Thanks to our Fine Arts Community Impact Award, over the past two years we have given out 5 awards of $1,000 each to 5 different Fine Arts undergraduate students honouring their contributions to community organizations like Open Space, Pacific Opera Victoria, VOS Musical Theatre, Victoria Children’s Choir and Sidney’s ArtSea Community Arts Council.

“My goal as an artist has always been to use my passion for creativity to enhance the community, and being recognized for my efforts felt incredible,” says 2021 recipient Alison Roberts. “As a student, it ensured that I could continue volunteering my time for projects and productions that brought me joy and fulfillment instead of worrying about finances. I am very grateful to everyone who made this award possible!”

With your support, we can continue to financially assist the community efforts of our students: in 2021, Giving Tuesday saw Fine Arts raise $5,167 in support of Faculty of Fine Arts Indigenous Student Award.

In addition to donating, here are three other ways to support our students on Giving Tuesday:

UVic Philanthropoly 

To celebrate Giving Tuesday, the UVic Alumni Association is inviting UVic alumni and friends to play an online game of Philanthropoly, like monopoly but with a giving twist. Each player will unlock $10 to the Giving Tuesday fund of your choice and have the chance to win in 1 of 5 UVic prize packages!

Purchase a coffee

Between 8am & Noon at participating UVic Food Services outlets, proceeds ($1 from drip and $2 from specialty) will support our Giving Tuesday priority fund.

Hot chocolate by donation

Find the Bubble Bus on campus from Noon-4pm and get an afternoon treat by donation!

Explore UVic on Nov 26

Considering a future as a student in the Faculty of Fine Arts? Join us on Saturday, Nov 26, as we open our doors as part of Explore UVic—UVic’s free, all-day open house. We’ve created a fun-filled day of student panels, sample lectures, presentations, tours and more. Check out the schedule of events, plan ahead and make the most of your visit!

This is your chance to discover what it’s like to be part of BC’s only stand-alone fine arts faculty, which means you’ll be learning as part of a dedicated arts-specific community. On Saturday, we’ll be hosting an open house (12-2pm in the lobby of the Fine Arts building) with representatives from our departments of Art History & Visual Studies, Theatre, Visual Arts, Writing and the School of Music who can answer your program questions. We’ll also have a general representative on hand to answer your questions from 11-12 and 2-3pm if you can’t make the open house.

Explore where you’ll be learning

We’ll also be offering behind-the-scenes tours of our facilities at these times and locations:

  • Art History & Visual Studies: 11:00, 12:00, 1:00, 2:00, 3:00 (meet in the Fine Arts building lobby)
  • Fine Arts/Writing: 11am-3pm (meet in the Fine Arts building lobby)
  • School of Music: 11:00, 12:30, 2:00, 3:30 (meet in Music’s upstairs lobby, MacLaurin B-Wing)
  • Theatre: 11:00, 11:45, 12:30 (meet in the Phoenix Building lobby)
  • Visual Arts: 11:00, 12:00, 1:00, 2:00 (meet in the Visual Arts building lobby)

Enjoy a sample lecture

You can also catch a sample lecture on “Activating Performance” with Theatre professor Sasha Kovacs from 2:15-3pm in room 167 of the Elliott Building.

The word “performative” is everywhere across social media. People add “performative” in hashtags to denounce those who don’t, as Hamlet advised his players, “suit the action to the word, the word to the action.”

Performance has always gotten a bad rap. People criticize performance as hollow, ineffective, lazy and false. But does this account for performance’s power to activate and incite real-world change? Through historic and contemporary examples, we’ll reconsider the power of performance as an agent of positive change.

Sasha Kovacs

Take in a show

If you’re specifically interested in Theatre, take the opportunity to see first-hand what our students can do by catching a matinee of our mainstage show Spring Awakening, running 2-4pm Saturday. This powerful rock musical transformed Broadway in 2006 and went on to win eight Tony Awards including Best Musical, Best Book of a Musical and Best Original Score — now, our Phoenix students are bringing this electrifying fusion of morality, sexuality and rock ‘n’ roll to life on stage. (Note: this is a separate ticketed event that must be booked separately from Explore UVic.)

Spring Awakening (photo: Dean Kalyan)

And if you’re interested in Music, you can hear what our students are creating at two separate concerts on Saturday: a Piano Studio Recital (2-4pm, featuring students from the studio of May Ling Kwok) and a Student Composers’ Concert (8-10pm, featuring new and daring works by composition students), both in the School of Music’s Phillip T Young Recital Hall in the MacLaurin B-Wing. 

Register now for Explore UVic

Register in advance now for this free day of exploration and activities . . . or just drop by on Saturday. We’d love to meet you!

Fine Arts active with 5 Days of Action

UVic’s 5 Days of Action is back! Running Nov 14-18, Five Days of Action: 365 Days of Commitment is UVic’s annual free, week-long event aimed at amplifying the work groups, units and organizations are doing to create a more diverse, inclusive and equitable campus and community throughout the year—both on- and off-campus. Fine Arts is once again organizing a number of events as part of this week of significant interactions.

Each day of the week represents a different call to action: Monday asks us to listen, Tuesday to reflect, Wednesday to dialogue, Thursday to engage, and Friday to take action. There will be many opportunities to reflect on what we can do as individuals and as part of a team to improve the sense of inclusion and belonging in our greater community. We’re all encouraged to take part throughout the week by visiting an events, attending a workshop or seminar, or engaging with the curated list of things to read, watch and do. 

Here’s a quick roundup of what Fine Arts has coming up:

KILLJOYS art exhibition: Mon-Fri, Nov 14-18, Audain Gallery, Visual Arts Building

Explore how art can use various mediums to confront forms of systemic violence and oppression in this annual exhibition by Visual Arts students, staff and faculty.

Walk with Me: 10 & 11:30am Mon-Tues Nov 14-15, SUB Pujol Room

Join Fine Arts Indigenous Resurgence Coordinator Karla Point, Theatre PhD alum & sessional Will Weigler plus Lydia Toorenburgh (Anthropology) for this one-hour, in-person experiential and creatively rewarding activity designed to deepen Settler Canadians’ felt-understanding of the lived experiences of Indigenous peoples.

Karla Point

Arts for Action: 12:30-1:30pm Tues, Nov 15, Visual Arts Room A111

Poets will be performing up to three poems while collaborating with visual arts students to live capture the themes and experiences during the performances. With poetry ranging from free-verse and Haiku to rhymed poetry, the themes will  address different topics of anti-racism, equity, diversity, inclusion and/or sexualized violence prevention. 

Featuring poets & Writing alumni Yvonne Blomer and Arleen Paré, plus Alexa Taylor-McCallum, ALHS and Visual Arts students Tori Jones and Satya Underhill.

Amplifying Voices: 12:30pm Tues, Nov 15, Phillip T. Young Recital Hall, MacLaurin B-wing

The first of two School of Music events being presented, Amplifying Voices sees UVic’s Music Student Association present a lecture-recital featuring underrepresented identities in music. Student performers and composers will present and discuss works that highlight marginalized voices, bringing awareness to EDI-related challenges that musicians and musical institutions are facing.

Equal Measure: 8pm Tues, Nov 15, Phillip T. Young Recital Hall

That same evening sees the recital Equal Measure featuring pianist Rachel Kiyo Iwaasa (BMus ’93) and violinst Sarah Westwick performing a concert of works for violin and piano by historical and contemporary women composers including lsabella Leonarda, Amanda Maier, Florence Price, Elizabeth Raum, and Jessie Montgomery. A short post-concert Q&A and reception will follow. This concert is made possible in part by funding from the University of Victoria Alumni Association.

Rachel Iwaasa (photo:SD Holman)

“It’s Just Black Hair” 12:45-1:45pm Thurs, Nov 17, McIntyre Studio, Phoenix Building • Register here

Join Fine Arts playwright-in-residence Thembelihle Moyo for this artist talk, which will feature a Q&A plus premiere excerpts of her new play, It’s Just Black Hair. She’ll be joined on-stage by Theatre professors Sasha Kovacs & Yasmine Kandil.

Born and raised in Zimbabwe, Moyo’s previous plays include Colour Blue, Let it Out, Who Said I Don’t Want to Dance and I Want To Fly. “Black hair is more than just strands that unite in kinky solidarity, demanding to be seen and heard,” says Moyo. 

Thembelihle Moyo

Spring Awakening: Nov 10-26, Bishop Theatre, Phoenix Building (Tickets $18-$33)

While not directly associated with this overall event, the themes behind the mainstage Phoenix production Spring Awakening definitely match the goals of 5 Days of Action. As high-school teenagers in an 1890s provincial German town struggle to reconcile their budding sexual feelings, the moral code of their society leads them to tragedy. An electrifying fusion of morality, sexuality and rock music, Spring Awakening forever changed the definition of what a Broadway musical could be when it debuted in 2006, breaking boundaries by exploring the journey from adolescence to adulthood with poignancy and passion. 

Broadway veteran directs Spring Awakening at the Phoenix

When mounting an acclaimed Broadway musical, it’s always good to have somebody in the director’s chair who knows of which they ing. Enter veteran performer Michelle Rios, whose impressive credits on and Off-Broadway include a number of Tony Award-nominated productions—including starring alongside reining musical theatre king Lin Manuel Miranda in a little show called In the Heights.

Now a university instructor, applied theatre facilitator, and director herself, Rios was invited to the Department of Theatre this year as both a sessional and the director of the mainstage production Spring Awakening, the coming-of-age high-school rock musical that swept the Tony, Grammy, and Drama Desk awards back when it debuted in 2006.

The cast of Phoenix Theatre’s Spring Awakening (photo: Dean Kalyan)

Popular but challenging

Yet, despite its impressive rock & roll pedigree, Spring Awakening—which runs November 10-26 at the Phoenix—remains a challenging show that never flinches from tackling youthfully sensitive topics like abuse, abortion, suicide, homophobia, teen pregnancy and the crushing pressure of unrealistic academic expectations.

“There are a number of moments in this show that can be triggering for young actors,” says Rios. “We’ve had several conversations, because some scenes are rather vulnerable.  I’m trying to keep this process safe—emotionally and psychologically—because I know that this piece requires a certain level of emotional connection and urgency. Therefore, safety, collaboration, and open communication are key.”

In addition to these emotional pressures are the inevitable singing/dancing/acting anxieties that come with mounting a full musical. Unlike the students Rios usually works with as part of the teaching faculty at the Canadian College of Performing Arts, UVic’s theatre program doesn’t specifically focus on musical theatre . . . despite the fact it was the students themselves who chose to mount Spring Awakening.

Not an easy show

But Rios says she’s more than up for the challenge, seeing it as an ideal fusion of her experiences both on Broadway and working with young artists. “Teaching is something I really love, even though I come from a strong performance background,” she says. “While I was performing in New York, I was also working as a teaching artist with an organization that used drama as a means of conflict resolution and drop-out prevention.”

The first step in her process was finding out why the students chose this production. “At our first rehearsal, we had a great conversation about where they’re at, what they’re feeling, and what they need to say,” she explains. “This was an important conversation. Musical theatre is a multilayered process. This isn’t an easy show to sing, act, and dance multiple times a week. But now that the students are immersed in it, they’re learning a lot about the process and the demands of this kind of production—they have learned so much material in very little time.”

Sharing her experience

While Victoria may well be just about as far from Broadway as you can get in North America—both geographically and culturally—Rios feels she’s in the right place at the right time.

“As an artist and educator, I’ve spent a lot of time on the road — directing a musical with 20 young actors is another exciting journey for me,” she says with a quick laugh. “I’m at a point in my life where I really want to focus on passing the torch by working with young actors and helping them achieve their goals. I also feel lucky to have learned from some great directors and mentors throughout my career, so I try to bring that knowledge into the work. All in all, it’s been a great opportunity and process!”

Orange Shirt Day 2022

Artist Carey Newman Hayalthkin’geme (Kwakwaka’wakw/Coast Salish) on “Hearts and Hands”
UVic is committed to reconciliation. We’re working to foster truth, respect and mutual understanding with all Indigenous peoples and communities. You can partner in the work of reconciliation by listening, learning and sharing on Orange Shirt Day.

The theme of this year’s Orange Shirt Day event is resurgence. Resurgence means to reclaim, regenerate and reconnect one’s relationship with Indigenous homelands, culture and community.

Faculty, staff, students, alumni and community members are invited to attend campus Orange Shirt Day events on Thursday, September 29 in the quad. You are welcome to drop in and stay for as long as you are able.

The university will be closed and the university flags lowered on September 30 to mark the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, a federal statutory holiday to honour the lost children and survivors of residential schools, their families and communities.

Schedule of events

Emcees: Dr. Jacquie Green, executive director, Office of Indigenous Academic and Community Engagement, and Mercedes Neasloss

9 a.m. Lighting of the Sacred Fire

9:30 a.m. Opening remarks
With Eugene Sam and Christine Sam, Songhees Nation

  • opening blessing
  • welcome to the Territory
  • singing and drumming
  • calling of the Witnesses

9:50 a.m. Significance of the Sacred Fire with Ry Moran, associate university librarian, Reconciliation and co-chair, Orange Shirt Day committee

10:05 a.m. Survivors share their reflections
Speakers: Eddie Charlie, Karla Point, Mark Atleo and Laura Manson

11:45 – 12 p.m. Witness reflections

1 – 2 p.m. Open dialogue on resurgence

  • moderator: Dr. Heidi Stark, associate professor, Indigenous Governance and director, Centre for Indigenous Research and Community-Led Engagement at UVic
  • panelists: Dr. Sarah Hunt, assistant professor in Environmental Studies & Canada Research Chair; Dr. Sarah Morales, associate professor, Faculty of Law; Dr. Gina Starblanket, associate professor in School of Indigenous Governance; and Andrew Ambers, 4th year Political Science and Indigenous Studies student

2 – 2:30 p.m. Closing remarks and closing prayer

About the design

The design for the t-shirt was created by Fine Arts Impact Chair in Indigenous Art Practices Carey Newman Hayalthkin’geme (Kwakwaka’wakw/Coast Salish).

“This design was made to honour the children who died in residential school. The hearts express love for all those in unmarked graves and compassion for the families and communities who waited for them to be found. The small and colourful hands remind us of the uniqueness and beauty of every child. Taken together, they represent our commitment to listen to our hearts and use our hands, to do the work that needs to be done,” says Newman.

“The visceral confirmation of Survivor accounts that has come from locating these graves has affected many of us on an emotional level. It has changed the way that many people think and feel about our histories and current realities in Canada.”

If you would like to support Orange Shirt Day initiatives, please consider making a $25 donation directly to the Elders Engagement Fund, Witness Blanket Project or Orange Shirt Society.