Stories from the Creative Edge

Try this art history holiday quiz!

Nothing says the holidays quite like a quiz—whether it’s focused on movies, carols or the roots of traditions, a holiday quiz has become a staple for most people. With that in mind, the annual Art History & Visual Studies Christmas Quiz is back to challenge your visual knowledge.

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Syrian quartet escapes ravages of war for fellowship at UVic

The dramatic story of a Syrian guitar quartet escaping the ongoing destruction of the Syrian civil war for a fellowship at the University of Victoria offers a remarkable message about the power of music, hope and determination. Alexander Dunn, an internationally renowned guitarist and instructor with UVic’s School of Music for nearly three decades, played a vital role in bringing the Orontes Guitar Quartet to the university as recipients of a prestigious Artist Protection Fund Fellowship grant.

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TubaChristmas a “sonic hug” for the city

For 40 years now, tuba and euphonium players from all across Vancouver Island and beyond have been gathering at Market Square in downtown Victoria for one of the city’s most anticipated holiday traditions. TubaChristmas returns to once again raise money for the Times Colonist Christmas Fund, a charity that assists the people most in need in the Greater-Victoria community.

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Writing alumna wins second Giller Prize in seven years

Internationally acclaimed Department of Writing alumna and Greater Victoria-based author Esi Edugyan has won the 2018 Scotiabank Giller Prize for her latest novel, Washington Black. Edugyan wins $100,000 on this, the 25th anniversary of Canada's richest literary...

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AHVS professor Carolyn Butler-Palmer advised on new $10 bill Copy

When Art History & Visual Studies professor Carolyn Butler-Palmer received an email from the Bank of Canada back in 2017, she didn’t put much stock in it. “To be honest, I thought it was a scam email,” she laughs, “but in fact they wanted to speak to me as an art historian.”

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Leader in Art Song performance receives honourary degree

One of the world’s great interpreters of the German art song tradition known as Lieder and one of the most frequently recorded lieder singers of modern times, Mitsuko Shirai is acclaimed worldwide for her extraordinary performances and recordings of songs by Franz Schubert, Robert Schumann, Hugo Wolf, and others.

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UVic hosts 2018 Building Reconciliation Forum

UVic is this year’s host for the fourth annual Building Reconciliation Forum, in partnership with Universities Canada, the national organization for Canadian universities, and Fine Arts will be hosting a panel discussion on First Nations Art Practice & Reconciliation.

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New artist residency strengthens connections between art & science

Victoria-based artist Colton Hash is the inaugural recipient of an Artist-in-Residence program announced today by the Faculty of Fine Arts and Ocean Networks Canada (ONC), a UVic initiative. The new ONC residency will strengthen connections between art and science, and broaden perspectives on major issues ranging from technology and the environment to biodiversity and healthy communities.

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Jazz ensemble offers new soundtrack for silent classic

How do you improve on one of the greatest films ever made? If you’re the UVIc Jazz Ensemble, you “comprovise” a new score to be played alongside a screening of the 1925 Russian silent classic Battleship Potemkin. For jazz ensemble leader and School of Music professor...

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New adjunct professor heading up Canadian-born Broadway hit at the Phoenix

“Mix ups, mayhem and a gay wedding… of course the phrase gay wedding has a different meaning now… but back then it just meant fun, that’s all this show is – fun!” says the Man in the Chair as he reads the back of the record cover of his favourite musical from 1928: The Drowsy Chaperone. But this fictitious musical is the foundation for the real 2006 Broadway hit musical of the same name, running at the Phoenix Theatre from November 8 to 24.

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Bill Gaston wins Victoria Book Prize

Department of Writing professor Bill Gaston has won the 2018 City of Victoria Butler Book Prize for his short-story collection The Mariner’s Guide to Self Sabotage (Douglas & McIntyre). Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps and co-sponsor Brian Butler presented Gaston with his...

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It’s that time of year for This Side of West

No question, UVic's Department of Writing has produced scores on notable alumni — see the current success of writers like the 2018 Man Booker finalist & Giller Prize shortlisted Esi Edugyan for one — but this week, current students will be in the spotlight when the...

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Wind & song highlighted in Faculty Chamber Music Series

Welcome the fall breezes with this special Faculty Chamber Music concert on Saturday, October 13. Wind and Song will highlight the School of Music’s brass, woodwind and voice faculty, along with some special guests, with a bold and surprising lineup of pieces. From...

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Flute concert offers rare & daring program

Prize-winning flutist Suzanne Snizek has a dedicated practice of bringing lesser-known and previously suppressed music to the concert stage. In a noon-hour Faculty Concert on Tuesday, October 9, Dr. Snizek will present a rare selection of music by Czech, Korean, Jewish and Soviet composers.

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Alumni show spotlights the ups & downs of new motherhood

From Jedi knights and gold-rush explorers to doomed puppets and romantic clowns, over the past 15 years Phoenix Theatre’s annual Spotlight on Alumni has presented a range of shows as diverse and accomplished as the graduates themselves. But this month, Phoenix is entering a world as strange and terrifying as any yet imagined: motherhood.

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Visiting Artists program a fall highlight

Always an exciting part of each semester, the long-running Visiting Artist program in the Department of Visual Arts has announced their fall lineup. Organized by Visual Arts instructor Doug Jarvis and MFA candidate Dani Proteau, all these illustrated talks take place...

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Dept of Writing busy at Victoria Festival of Authors

Looking to familiarize yourself with the fantastic range of talent associated with the Department of Writing? Don’t miss the third annual Victoria Festival of Authors, where the literary talents of Writing faculty and alumni will be showcased alongside top local and...

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Benjamin Butterfield named to Royal Society of Canada

Three University of Victoria faculty members have received the country’s highest academic honour, named 2018 fellows of the Royal Society of Canada (RSC). Among those elected to the RSC's distinguished ranks are School of Music professor Benjamin Butterfield, one of...

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Student reflections: A Series of Nudges

He told me about a violin teacher his daughter had had when she was growing up. The teacher hardly ever spoke, or directed; she simply supported his daughter’s arm, repositioned her bow hold . . . I asked if that was teaching; he asked what teaching is supposed to be....

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Visual Arts students & alumni colouring the city

The creative practice of Department of Visual Arts students and alumni are in the spotlight in a series of street-level artistic initiatives around Victoria right now — a number of which are sponsored by the City of Victoria itself. Hop on your bike or plan a walking tour to catch some of this inspiringly creative work in action.

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Fine Arts fantastic at Fringe Fest

If it's late August, it must be time for the Victoria Fringe Festival. Running August 22 to September 2, this annual explosion of live performance returns with 47 shows from around the globe in 12 venues, plus outdoor events for the whole family and late night...

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New donations benefit students

Never underestimate the impact a donation can have for students. For many, both undergraduate and graduate, it can make all the difference in their academic career. “As a student from a rural town and a lower income family, this scholarship will go a long way in...

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Theatre historian Sasha Kovacs joins Phoenix

While the Department of Theatre crossed the half-century mark with their 50th anniversary in 2016, they’ve already started planning for the future by welcoming a number of new professors to their teaching faculty. Due to a round of recent retirements that saw the likes of design professor Allan Stichbury, director Linda Hardy and theatre historian Jennifer Wise step down, they had the opportunity to bring in fresh talent in the guise of acclaimed designer Patrick DuWors, voice and speech expert Michael Elliott and theatre historian Sasha Kovacs.

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Vanier Scholar Dennis Gupa on his Paddling Visions

What are the interconnections between climate change, sea rituals and traditional ecological knowledge and practices, and how those be explored through applied theatre practices? That’s the focus of the research currently being conducted by Theatre PhD candidate and Vanier Scholar Dennis Gupa.

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AHVS professor Carolyn Butler-Palmer advised on new $10 bill

When Art History & Visual Studies professor Carolyn Butler-Palmer received an email from the Bank of Canada back in 2017, she didn’t put much stock in it. “To be honest, I thought it was a scam email,” she laughs, “but in fact they wanted to speak to me as an art historian.”

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Summer is the time to register for electives

Ever taken a course where you study — and play — video games? Or watch Pixar movies? What about the acting experience, public speaking, humour writing, art forgery, or the cultural impact of film music or the history of fashion & body modification? It’s tough to beat Fine Arts when it comes to cool electives.

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Professor challenges WHO “video game addiction”

When the World Health Organization (WHO) announced on June 18 that they were declaring "video game addiction" a mental health condition in the 11th edition of its International Classification of Diseases, Department of Writing chair David Leach felt compelled to...

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