Neighbourhood Art Tour with Anique J. Jordan

 

Thursday, September 15, 2016 - 4:00am

On September 8, graduate students from the Interdisciplinary Master’s in Art, Media and Design  and Criticism and Curatorial Practice programs joined artist Anique J. Jordan for a unique neighbourhood tour that highlighted the hidden history of a construction site close to OCAD University.

The tour started behind City Hall on Chestnut Street where the new provincial courthouse building is planned for construction. Anique shared with the group that this site has a deep history that is obscured by the large, grey, hoarding that now traces the perimeter of the lot. Upon beginning construction, the development company discovered thousands of cultural artifacts from the site’s history as the location of a British Methodist Episcopal church, rooted in one of the most ethnically diverse areas of the city called The Ward. Originally built in 1845, the church was a crucial site for Toronto’s black community playing an important role as a spiritual, community, and cultural centre.

Now the site is surrounded by imposing hoarding that demands to ‘post no bills’; it offers no narrative or suggestion of the site as one of historical civic significance. Anique is particularly interested in what she perceives as an erasure of the histories of the black and immigrant communities that previously thrived in that neighbourhood. With no signage, no commemoration, and no invitation for conversation, the current construction site illuminates a complicated relationship between historical preservation and the high-speed drive for new development in Toronto.

From this former church site Anique led the tour group to the Art Gallery of Ontario’s exhibition The Idea of North, where works by contemporary artists are exhibited alongside paintings by the iconic Canadian artist Lawren Harris. Anique’s works in the exhibition speak directly to the history of the black community within The Ward that Harris also used as a subject in many of his early paintings. Her works, that directly reference the Chestnut Street site, create a contemporary history that speaks back to the historical narratives that are currently being built over, in an attempt to recreate a more accurate and honest conversation about the history of our city and its citizens.

This artist tour was organized by Dr. Andrea Fatona, the Graduate Program Director for the Criticism and Curatorial Practice program. It was part of Graduate Studies Orientation week where all new students were welcomed to OCAD U - and its surrounding neighbourhood!

For more on Anique’s work in The Idea of North exhibition, see her interview: http://artmatters.ca/wp/2016/08/an-interview-with-toronto-artist-anique-jordan-lawren-harris-toronto-and-a-complicated-history/

For more on Anique’s work: https://aniquejjordan.com/

For more on the British Methodist Episcopal church construction site: https://www.thestar.com/news/insight/2016/02/15/torontos-black-history-unearthed-in-excavation-of-landmark-church.html

For more on OCAD University graduate programs: http://www.ocadu.ca/academics/graduate-studies.htm

 

Images courtesy of Karina Iskandarsjah www.karinais.com

Recipient of 2019 Nuit Blanche Independent Project Career Launcher Announced
Nuit Blanche Toronto and the Centre for Emerging Artists & Designers are excited to announce Crutch CAC as the recipient of the 2019 Independent Project Career Launcher.
Winning designs in 'I Voted' sticker competition
In the lead up to the upcoming 2019 federal election, OCAD University and Instagram have teamed up to encourage Canadians to participate in the election. This past spring, OCAD and Instagram launched the “I Voted” sticker competition, which provided design students at OCAD U and NSCAD with an opportunity to design an Instagram Story sticker that will allow Canadians to share their voting experience with the rest of the Instagram community. The sticker will also link to timely Election Day information on when and where Canadians can vote.  
Partial Gallery x OCAD U Artist Showcase banner
Partial Gallery and OCAD University are excited to announce a new partnership and opportunity for OCAD U Faculty of Art students and alumni. A select number of OCAD U students and graduates are receiving complimentary 1-year Pro Accounts on Partial and inclusion as featured artists within the OCAD University Artist Showcase on Partial’s online platform.
Paranoia by Doug Panton
Illustrator and OCAD U instructor Doug Panton was chosen as a winner n the Fine Art Category
Pick up the October issue of Elle Canada Magazine!
The Textile Museum of Canada is looking for Creatives in Residence! Three emerging professionals – an artist, a curator, and an educator – are invited to explore new forms of engagement with Museum audiences by animating exhibition spaces and activating the permanent collection.
Bordering Flags, courtesy: Fylbert Marion Tan
Five OCAD U students – some current and some recent grads – won Top Talent in the 2019 Adobe Design Achievement Awards. The Awards are the world's premier digital media competition for students and emerging creators, which aims to promote exposure to creative leaders and influencers.
The Inclusive Design Research Centre (IDRC) at OCAD University has received a $2.9 M grant from the Government of Canada, through the Accessible Technology Program for Project We Count. The project will address barriers to participation and employment for persons with disabilities in the rapidly growing data economy. 
construction hoarding with 'post no bills' warning
Anique standing in front of her artwork on display at the Art Gallery of Ontario
Thursday, September 15, 2016 - 4:00am

On September 8, graduate students from the Interdisciplinary Master’s in Art, Media and Design  and Criticism and Curatorial Practice programs joined artist Anique J. Jordan for a unique neighbourhood tour that highlighted the hidden history of a construction site close to OCAD University.

The tour started behind City Hall on Chestnut Street where the new provincial courthouse building is planned for construction. Anique shared with the group that this site has a deep history that is obscured by the large, grey, hoarding that now traces the perimeter of the lot. Upon beginning construction, the development company discovered thousands of cultural artifacts from the site’s history as the location of a British Methodist Episcopal church, rooted in one of the most ethnically diverse areas of the city called The Ward. Originally built in 1845, the church was a crucial site for Toronto’s black community playing an important role as a spiritual, community, and cultural centre.

Now the site is surrounded by imposing hoarding that demands to ‘post no bills’; it offers no narrative or suggestion of the site as one of historical civic significance. Anique is particularly interested in what she perceives as an erasure of the histories of the black and immigrant communities that previously thrived in that neighbourhood. With no signage, no commemoration, and no invitation for conversation, the current construction site illuminates a complicated relationship between historical preservation and the high-speed drive for new development in Toronto.

From this former church site Anique led the tour group to the Art Gallery of Ontario’s exhibition The Idea of North, where works by contemporary artists are exhibited alongside paintings by the iconic Canadian artist Lawren Harris. Anique’s works in the exhibition speak directly to the history of the black community within The Ward that Harris also used as a subject in many of his early paintings. Her works, that directly reference the Chestnut Street site, create a contemporary history that speaks back to the historical narratives that are currently being built over, in an attempt to recreate a more accurate and honest conversation about the history of our city and its citizens.

This artist tour was organized by Dr. Andrea Fatona, the Graduate Program Director for the Criticism and Curatorial Practice program. It was part of Graduate Studies Orientation week where all new students were welcomed to OCAD U - and its surrounding neighbourhood!

For more on Anique’s work in The Idea of North exhibition, see her interview: http://artmatters.ca/wp/2016/08/an-interview-with-toronto-artist-anique-jordan-lawren-harris-toronto-and-a-complicated-history/

For more on Anique’s work: https://aniquejjordan.com/

For more on the British Methodist Episcopal church construction site: https://www.thestar.com/news/insight/2016/02/15/torontos-black-history-unearthed-in-excavation-of-landmark-church.html

For more on OCAD University graduate programs: http://www.ocadu.ca/academics/graduate-studies.htm

 

Images courtesy of Karina Iskandarsjah www.karinais.com