RESIDENCY # 26


ARTIST RESIDENCY # 26: JULY 29th & 30th

ARTIST: ARIEL GORDON

 
ARTIST BIO
 
ARIEL GORDON IS A WINNIPEG WRITER. BOTH HER BOOKS OF POETRY, STOWAWAYS (2014) AND HUMP (2010) WON THE LANSDOWNE PRIZE FOR POETRY AT THE MANITOBA BOOK AWARDS. SHE IS CURRENTLY WORKING ON TWO BOOKS, GUSH, A COLLECTION OF LITERARY WORK ON MENSTRUATION FOR CALGARY’S FRONTENAC HOUSE, EDITED WITH TANIS MACDONALD AND ROSANNA DEERCHILD, AND TREED, A BOOK OF CREATIVE NON-FICTION ABOUT WINNIPEG’S URBAN FOREST FOR HAMILTON’S WOLSAK & WYNN. OTHER RECENT PROJECTS INCLUDE CURATING THE NATIONAL POETRY MONTH IN THE WINNIPEG FREE PRESS PROJECT TWO YEARS RUNNING. WHEN NOT BEING BOOKISH, ARIEL LIKES TROMPING THROUGH THE WOODS AND TAKING MACRO PHOTOGRAPHS OF MUSHROOMS.
 
 
PROJECT DESCRIPTION
 
“TREE TALK”
 

WINNIPEG’S STREET TREES WERE RECENTLY HOSTS FOR THREE INFESTATIONS: CANKERWORM, ELM SPANWORM, AND TENT CATERPILLARS. WHICH MEANT MOST WINNIPEGGERS ATE/WORE WORMS FOR WEEKS AT A TIME. THE WORST-HIT TREES HAD THEIR LEAVES EATEN DOWN TO THE STEM, WHICH MEANS THEY’LL SPEND JULY GROWING A NEW CANOPY’S WORTH OF LEAVES…

 

THE MATURE ELM OUTSIDE TALLEST POPPY IS MIDDLE-AGED, ANYWHERE FROM 70 TO 100 YEARS OLD. IT’S SURVIVED ROUND AFTER ROUND OF CONSTRUCTION, BILLOWS OF POLLUTION, DROUGHT, EVEN GIG POSTERS STAPLED TO IT.

 

IN TREETALK, GORDON WILL WORK WITH/NEXT TO THE TREE TO ADD A NEW LAYER OF LEAVES TO OUR IDEAS ON STREET TREES.

 

THROUGHOUT THE WEEKEND, GORDON WILL WORK ON THE TALLEST POPPY PATIO, COMPOSING SNIPPETS OF POEMS WHICH SHE WILL HANG FROM THE TREE USING PAPER AND STRING. PASSERSBY WILL BE INVITED TO TREETALK TOO — THEIR SECRETS/ONE-LINERS/MEDITATIONS/HAIKU WILL ALSO BE HUNG FROM THE TREE. ALONG THE WAY, GORDON WILL DOCUMENT THE LEAVES VIA PHOTOGRAPHY. SHE WILL ASK PEOPLE IN HER WINNIPEG AND CANADIAN NETWORKS TO ADD LEAVES VIA COMMENTS ON SOCIAL MEDIA.

 

BY THE END OF THE WEEKEND, THE TREE WILL HAVE A NEW, TEMPORARY COAT OF LEAVES, AS EPHEMERAL/BEAUTIFUL AS THE ORIGINAL. IT WILL BE INFESTED WITH WORDS/IDEAS. GORDON WILL COMPILE ALL THE TEXTS INTO A FOUND POETRY PIECE, WHICH WILL BE LAUNCHED AT THE FIRST FRIDAY AFTER PARTY ON AUGUST 4, 2017.

 

ON SUNDAY, JULY 30, GORDON WILL HOLD A ONE-HOUR WRITING WORKSHOP, WHERE PEOPLE ARE INVITED TO COME AND TREETALK, WRITING POEMS AND LETTERS TO THE TREE. 

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