Canadian Artist

Canada: Artist publishes book about ‘dirty oil and government censorship’

This post comes to you from Culture|Futures

FrankeJamesDoNotTalk_260In 2011, the Canadian artist Franke James was supposed to have her work exhibited in 20 European cities. But the local NGO that was sponsoring her was allegedly bullied and intimidated so badly by Canadian officials that it pulled out and the entire show was canceled. A spokesperson for the government had explained that Ms. James’ show was about climate change and her opinions were contrary to those of the government.

However, Franke James does not intend to keep quiet about what she experienced — now she is publishing a graphic 368-page book, ‘Banned on the Hill: A True Story about Dirty Oil and Government Censorship’, about the ordeal which features passages from more than 2,100 pages of official memos, internal federal emails, and other records.

125 funders supported her crowdfunding-initiative onIndiegogo.com to advertise her cause in the Hill Times, an Ottawa political weekly, and to launch an outdoor campaign Monday in the capital. She managed to raise over 5,000 US dollars already a month before the fundraising deadline, and her ad began appearing in the Hill Times on 20 May 2013 with the headline: “Do not talk about climate change. It is against government policy.”

American climate activist and founder of the organisation 350.org, Bill McKibben, was quoted as saying: “The Canadian government has clamped down on scientists who tell the truth about the tarsands, and it’s tried to shut up artists too. Happily, Franke James is indefatigable.”

Franke James hopes her book will be a how-to guide for other activists.
Read more and see Franke James’ artwork:

The Guardian – 17 May 2013:
Artist finds inspiration in Canadian government’s attempt to silence her
Visual essays by Franke James reveal how the ‘troublesome artist’ was targeted because her views on climate change clashed with the push to develop Alberta’s tar sands. By Suzanne Goldenberg, US environment correspondent 

The Toronto Star – 26 May 2013:
Climate activist’s book claims Conservatives tried to silence her
A new book by Toronto artist Franke James says her frequent criticism of Conservative climate change policy cost her federal funding for a European tour. By Raveena Aulakh

Franke James

This blog-post is re-published from artsfreedom.org.

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Monsantra

This post comes to you from EcoArtSpace
Patricia Watts, ecoartspace founder and west coast curator was recently invited to write a short essay for a gallery exhibition catalogue titled Monsantra published by TNG Gallery in Calgary featuring the work of Canadian artist Wendy DesChene and American artist Jeff Schmuki. The essay is online HERE. Since 2006 when she curated Hybrid Fields at the Sonoma County Museum, there have been numerous exhibitions and many artists creating work that explores our food systems. Most recently at the Smart Museum is Feast: Radical Hospitality in Contemporary Art curated by Stephanie Smith, which closes June 10th in Chicago, and upcoming Fall 2012 Green Acres at the CAC in Cincinnati curated by Sue Spaid.
 

“Using GMO seed obtained from the Monsanto Corporation, artists Wendy Deschene & Jeff Schmuki have grafted genetically modified food plants onto remote controlled robotic bases, constructing artificial organisms with no clear heritage or future.”
The exhibition runs through June 9th, 2012.

ecoartapace ecoartspace is a nonprofit platform providing opportunities for artists who address the human/nature relationship in the visual arts. Since 1999 they have collaborated with over 150 organizations to produce more than 40 exhibitions, 100 programs, working with 400 + artists in 15 states nationally and 8 countries internationally. Currently they are developing a media archive of video interviews with artists and collection of exhibitions ephemera for research purposes. Patricia Watts is founder and west coast curator. Amy Lipton is east coast curator and director of the ecoartspace NYC project room.

A project of the Social and Environmental Entrepreneurs since 1999

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