City of Kitchener meets Poetry City Challenge

The City of Kitchener is rising to a challenge from the City of Regina Mayor, and I have been asked to read a poem during the City Council meeting on Monday April 23, at 7pm.

I will be reading a poem from my Grand River: Grand Conversations series that I created as part of my 2010 City of Kitchener Artist In Residence project.

Here is an overview of the challenge as issued by Regina Mayor Pat Fiacco:
The Mayor’s Poetry City Challenge project encourages municipal councils across Canada to take a few minutes in their Council meetings in March or April 2012 to recognize the poets in their communities, the contribution of poetry to the arts in Canada, the enormous contribution small publishers to the history and cultural development of Canada. Poetry City will be coordinated with programs to promote reading, writing and study activities in schools, universities and community venues during National Poetry Month. The Poetry City project is led by the Saskatchewan Writers’ Guild (SWG) in partnership with the League of Canadian Poets.

According to Regina’s Mayor Pat Fiacco, the Mayor’s Poetry City Challenge “will be a world-first in recognizing the enormous contribution of our poets, other writers, and publishers to the cultural history and identity of our communities and our nation.”

Plan to attend to find out which poem I will read at the Kitchener City Council meeting and to show support for poetry during National Poetry Month; the first person at the meeting to tell me, “I’m here to support Canadian Poetry by a living poet!” will win a copy of my Grand River: Grand Conversations exhibition catalogue (a photo and poetry book).

Please come to the City of Kitchener Council Chamber on Monday April 23, 2012, at 7:00 pm!

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Hello world! A revamped Grand River: Grand Conversations site

Welcome to the new Grand River: Grand Conversations site on WordPress.com. This is a brief posting to let you know that the site has been relocated to grandconversations.wordpress.com.  There will be new and updated content coming soon.

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Publication – Grand River: Grand Conversations catalogue

Grand River: Grand Conversations catalogue
 
The catalogue documenting the exhibition Grand River: Grand Conversations is now available on the web!
 
If you’ve seen the exhibition at Kitchener City Hall’s Rotunda Gallery, you can re-read the poems at your leisure.
 
View all sixteen images and poems on the web in an Adobe Acrobat PDF form, or choose to print it for your personal use.
 
The file is large (14.5Mb) but gives a sense of the exhibition, in a 6"x10" book form.
 
Images in the catalogue are approximately 3"x8", much smaller than the original 8"x20" photographs in the exhibition; this is one reason to visit the exhibition, running until the end of Sunday, January 2nd, 2011.
 
Click on the link to go to the Public documents page to view or download the file: Grand River: Grand Conversations exhibition catalogue.
 
 
 
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Exhibition – Grand River: Grand Conversations

Grand River: Grand Conversations exhibition/opening reception
 
 
Stop by the Rotunda Gallery in December for some grand conversations
 
Stefan Rose’s year as Kitchener’s Artist in Residence culminates with his exhibition, Grand River: Grand Conversations

Meet Stefan and celebrate his achievement: Thursday, December 9, 5-7 pm  
 
 

A year’s worth of work by the City of Kitchener’s artist-in-residence, Stefan Rose, will be on exhibit at the Rotunda Gallery at Kitchener City Hall for the month of December.

The exhibition, called Grand River: Grand Conversations, examines Kitchener’s geography and history, residents’ sense of place, and the environment using photographs and poems. Throughout his residency, Rose exhibited his work on Grand River Transit buses, and ran public workshops on photography.

A Waterloo artist and poet, Rose is interested in creative and documentary art forms, using photography, videography, and poetry. He uses a large-format banquet camera, among others, for his creative work.

Born in Leeds, England, he immigrated to Canada in 1977. He has exhibited his photographs in numerous solo and group exhibitions, and has collaborated with other artists across many media.

Rose’s collaborative works include Townsend Retraced, 2004 (with Laura Cunningham and Hilary Martin); Death by Chocolate, 2008 (with photographer Andrew Wright), and several video works commissioned by the Penderecki String Quartet, to accompany their performances across Canada and internationally.

In 2008 his poetry chapbook, The House That Stands, was published by Anchorage Press, and was awarded first place in the poetry category of the 2008 Alcuin Society Book Design Awards (designer: Andrew Steeves); earlier this year it represented Canada in competition at the World Book Design Awards in Leipzig, Germany.

There are currenty five image/poem combinations from Grand River: Grand Conversations displayed inside Grand River Transit buses as interior advertising panels, to provide access to these artworks as a surprise for the riders. The panels are randomly distributed among the GRT fleet, on buses numbered 2413, 2426, 2705, 2707 and 8021, and may be assigned to any of the bus routes daily.

In mid-December, check back at this space for a free downloadable online publication with the photographs and poems of Grand River: Grand Conversations.

The artist-in-residence for 2011 is Sean Puckett, a Kitchener photographer.

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Public Talk – The Word On The Street

Reading from Grand River: Grand Conversations, poems in progress
 
Kitchener Radio Group Tent, Victoria Park, Kitchener
Sunday, September 26, 12:15pm – 1:15pm
 
On Sunday September 26th, I will be reading poems-in-progress from my Grand River: Grand Conversations project, as well as works from previous poetry sequences that relate to landscape and identity.  I will have examples of some of my images and poems that were turned into bus advertising panels.
 
I’m thankful for the opportunity to have a full hour to read poems from this Artist In Residence project, and will also be interested in talking to more Kitchener residents about what the Grand River means to them and their sense of community.
 

 On another bright note, five new panels will be going inside buses for the month of October, overlapping with the annual Oktoberfest celebrations. More information will follow soon about which buses will contain the poetry.  Here is an example of one of the bus panels.
 
 
 
 

 

 
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Public Talk – Grand River/River Grand: Chronicles and Conversations

 

Grand River / River Grand: Chronicles and Conversations

Kitchener-Waterloo Art Gallery, 101 Queen Street North, Kitchener, ON

Tuesday June 29, 2010, 7:00pm

What part does the Grand River play in the imagination of today’s residents of Kitchener, and how can sense of place translate into artwork?  Join photographer Stefan Rose for an evening talk about his creative process, and how conversations with residents and engagement with the landscape can reveal grander artistic insights, using large-format photographs and poems.  Rose will describe how temporality, psychogeography, seriality, and beauty coincide in his artwork, in relation to his ongoing project Grand River: Grand Conversations, and in context with the Kitchener-Waterloo Art Gallery’s ongoing series River Grand Chronicles, this year featuring the art of Gwen McGregor.  This is the second in a series of public talks by City of Kitchener’s 2010 Artist-In-Residence, Stefan Rose.
 
 
 
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Earth Day art installed on city buses – update

Here’s a update regarding the bus interior art panels; they are in buses numbered 8019, 2612, 2323, 2605, and 2311, and could be on any route in the Kitchener-Waterloo area on any given day (GRT has over 150 buses in their fleet, so the five buses could be anywhere)!  The panels will be inside the buses until May 15, 2010.  If anyone actually sees all five, please send me the names of the five poems and drop me an e-mail to let me know which is your favourite panel.
 
Here’s a quick note regarding the five panels, which are 11 x 35 inches in size.  Several poems have quotes from random residents of Kitchener (printed in italics), and the poems also refer to some aspect of the history of the area and my own responses to the landscape when I’m making the photographs.  The original images were made using a 1927-vintage large format view camera, that takes 8 inch x 20 inch (20cm x 50cm) film.  Below is an example of one of the panels.
 
Happy travels on a more environmental way to commute!
 
 
 
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Celebrate Earth Day with the City of Kitchener

From the City of Kitchener website http://www.kitchener.ca/news/MediaDetail.asp?tid=18741

 

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For Immediate Release
Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Celebrate Earth Day with the City of Kitchener

KITCHENER -Thursday, April 22, 2010 marks the 40th anniversary of Earth Day. The City of Kitchener and community partners have organized a variety of events to celebrate and we encourage residents taking part in the many activities around the region.

”Earth Day is all about empowering and encouraging Canadians to take environmental action in their communities,” said Councillor Berry Vrbanovic, council vice-chair of the city’s environmental committee.  ”Citizens are encouraged to get involved whether they volunteer to pick up litter, visit the Bloomin’ Earth Festival or learn more about energy and wildlife conservation through one of our activities.”
 
Each year the city organizes a number of events to mark Earth Day including litter clean ups for residents, businesses and schools, festivals and entertainment and planting and stewardship opportunities.
 
Kitchener’s Earth Day events for 2010 include the following:
 
20-Minute Makeover
Friday, April 16 at 2 p.m. near home or work.
Businesses and residents are encouraged to take 20 minutes on Friday, April 16 to get out there and pick up litter close to their place of work or residence. The city provides garbage bags and gloves to all registered participants while supplies last. For more information, visit www.kitchener.ca/earthday or call 519-741-2227.
This activity happens simultaneously in Waterloo and Cambridge.
 
Tim Hortons Community Clean-up
Saturday, April 17 from 10 a.m. to noon outside the Victoria Park Pavilion (80 Schneider Ave.).
Citizens are invited to pitch in and help out with the annual Tim Hortons Community Clean-up. Enjoy refreshments and a chance to win prizes. Pre-registration is not required. The event will take place rain or shine. For more information, call 519-741-2227. 
This activity happens in locations in Waterloo and Cambridge.
 
Kitchener Natural Areas Program (KNAP) Celebration
Saturday, April 24 from 1 to 4 p.m. at Huron Natural Area (801 Trillium Dr.).
Canadian Raptor Conservancy will have live birds of prey shows starting at 1, 2, and 3 p.m. Families will have the opportunity to build and take home a bird box (limit of one per household). There will also be opportunities to plant trees and go on nature walks. For more information, contact 519-741-3400 x3349 or knap@kitchener.ca.
 
Operation Spring Clean – school clean-up
Schools are encouraged to clean up their own schoolyards and/or adjacent public space. The city provides gloves and garbage bags. Visit www.kitchener.ca/earthday for more information.

Community organized clean-ups

The City of Kitchener also supports groups looking to organize their own clean up by providing free bags and gloves, as well as tip sheets on how to organize a clean up. During April, Tim Hortons provides prizes and supplies for those who organize their own clean-up. Register at www.kitchener.ca/earthday or by calling 519-741-2227.
 
Living Earth Festival
Join this vibrant, grassroots celebration, revealing our living connection to each other and the earth. Events include the Blooming Earth Artisan Market, Procession of the Species Parade and Earth Day Eco-Showcase along with many others. Visit http://www.livingearthfestival.org for more details.
 
Earth Day art installed in Grand River Transit buses
In conjunction with Earth Day 2010, running through April and May for a month, City of Kitchener Artist In Residence, Stefan Rose, will be exhibiting photographs and poems of the Grand River. The artwork is part of Rose’s project Grand River: Grand Conversations, which examines Kitchener’s geography and history, residents’ sense of place, and the environment using photographs and poems to stimulate dialogue. The five panels will be randomly placed inside the fleet of buses. More information about the project can be found at http://grandconversations.spaces.live.com
 
Background:
First launched as an environmental awareness event in the United States in 1970, Earth Day is celebrated as the birth of the environmental movement. More than six million Canadians will join one billion people in over 170 countries worldwide to heighten awareness of local environmental issues. 
 
Recently, the City of Kitchener joined millions around the world by during, turned off non-essential lights in city facilities to celebrate Earth Hour.
 
The purpose of these initiatives is to help raise awareness about environmental issues by encouraging as many people, businesses and other organizations as possible to participate. For more information, visit www.kitchener.ca/earthday
 

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Earth Day art installed on city buses

 From the City of Kitchener’s news site at http://www.kitchener.ca/news/MediaDetail.asp?tid=18872
 
 
For Immediate Release
Monday, April 19, 2010
Earth Day art installed on city buses
 
KITCHENER – Grand River Transit buses may be an unlikely place to find a new display of art work.
 
In conjunction with Earth Day 2010, running through April and May for a month, Grand River Transit buses will feature poetry and photographs by Stefan Rose, the 2010 City of Kitchener Artist In Residence in their interior advertising panels.
 
The artwork is part of Rose’s project Grand River: Grand Conversations, which examines Kitchener’s geography and history, residents’ sense of place, and the environment using photographs and poems to stimulate dialogue. The five panels will be randomly placed inside the fleet of buses, so frequent Grand River Transit passengers will be lucky enough to see all five!
 
”I’m interested in hearing from Kitchener residents why the Grand River is significant to them,” Rose explains. ”I hope to initiate conversations that will be reflected in the creation of photographic images, poetry and video that can be placed in various settings within the community.” 
 
Throughout the program, Rose will organize artist talks, engage in conversation with residents about their experiences with the river, and conduct photo critique sessions for the public. E-mails can be sent to GrandConversations@live.ca
 
Stefan Rose, a Waterloo artist, is interested in creative and documentary forms using photography, videography, and poetry. He uses a large-format banquet camera, among others, for his creative work. He has exhibited his photographs in numerous solo and group exhibitions, and has collaborated with other artists across many media, including several video works commissioned by the Penderecki String Quartet to accompany their performances across Canada and internationally.
 
More information about Stefan Rose’s 2010 City of Kitchener Artist In Residence program can be found at http://grandconversations.spaces.live.com
 
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Public Talk – Large Matters: Contemporary Canadian Large-Format Photography

Large Matters: Contemporary Canadian Large-Format Photography
Sunday February 21st, 2010, 2:00 p.m.
Conestoga Room, Kitchener City Hall, 200 King Street West, Kitchener, ON, N2G 4G7
 

Have you recently seen a photographer using a large camera with bellows, and a black cloth over his head? Do you think they only exist in old movies? You might soon be surprised! Join photographer Stefan Rose for an insightful look beneath the dark cloth. Find out why large cameras that use sheets of film (up to 8 inches x 20 inches in size) are still relevant in the digital age and important to today’s artists, and who these Canadian artists are, including photographers in Kitchener-Waterloo. This is the first in a series of public talks by City of Kitchener’s 2010 Artist-In-Residence, Stefan Rose.

In addition to artist talks, as Artist In Residence Rose will explore the effects of landscape and geography on people’s community-building experiences, using photography, videography, and poetry. The year-long program, entitled “Grand River: Grand Conversations,” will be showcased in a number of locations, including the Rotunda Gallery, and inside Grand River Transit buses, along with a publication, and video.
“The project will visually investigate the Grand River and its tributaries, and the place they occupy within the geography and the imaginations of the residents of Kitchener and area,” said Rose. Throughout the program, Rose will engage in conversation with residents about their experiences with the river. “I’m interested in hearing from Kitchener residents why the Grand River is significant to them; e-mail can be sent to GrandConversations@live.ca.”
 

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