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#Treasuring Strathcona A COMMUNITY ATLAS exploring our neighbourhood's People, Places, and Plants through diverse lenses and mediums.

Our vision for the residency is that neighbours get to know one another a little better; that making and collaborating together helps us get through tough conversations and bridge differences; and that everyone gets the chance to see how Strathcona -- human, more-than-human, and all together -- is resilient, capable and abundant.

Why Maps? Because maps are powerful, and community map-making invites people to think first about what the community already has, rather than what it needs. Maeve Lydon of the Common Ground Community Mapping Project in Victoria BC wrote:

Community mapping focuses on what people value and what they vision for the future. This kind of mapping is the antithesis of expert-led discourse and development, as everyone's views matter and can only enhance the map

http://www.aughty.org/pdf/community_mapping.pdf

A 19thC Tourist Map of Vancouver (looking south from the North Shore Mountains) contrasted against a contemporary map of the land now known as 'East Van' as it was before 1850 by Bruce Walker; and hand-drawn maps of Trillium Park by Strathcona Elementary students, and an emotional map of Strathcona by the lead artist. A map is a way of giving the land and its beings voices, showing and honouring what we value.

Not all maps show streets, and not all maps are drawn on paper. Some are made of songs, carved of wood, composed of sticks, or stitched or woven from fibres. The possibilities are many....

Maps on hands, a map that contrasts butterfly habitat and queer public spaces in the Bay Area in a book by culture critic and essayist Rebecca Solnit, and even a map of a year's worth of The Georgia Straight's "I Saw You" column mapped by Eastside Culture Crawl's cartographer Licker Geospatial Consulting https://www.lgeo.co/blog/2017/2/16/vancouvers-geography-of-desire
Part 1: Gathering our Thoughts and Inspiration: Public Events

Personal and Community Map Making at Public Events

A simple invitation to dream, imagine and play, stopping for ten minutes (or an hour!) to contribute a personal or collaborative image that could be collected and bound as a book or become part of a printed 'local's guide to Strathcona'.

Family Day - Scribbles, stories, and tall tales about favourite places in Strathcona, drawn on a simple base map of Strathcona's unique street grid. Materials: copy paper, felt pens, pencil crayons

Multicultural Fair - where are your ancestors from? where were you born? where are you now? Who are your neighbours? flags, fabrics, or other symbols of heritage posted onto a large collective base map. Possible Materials: poster paper, fabric, pins, felt pens, stamps and ink

Reconciliation in Action - A large hand-drawn base map shows historical shorelines & creeks, inviting people to imagine what their favourite places would have looked like -- would my house have been in the intertidal zone?! -- and note where native trees, shrubs or plants exist today. Materials: Fabric, paper, pins, pencil, fineliner, found objects (feathers, leaves, twigs, shells, sand); natural inks (walnut, snowberry, pokeberry, other)

Sustenance Fest - Stories of Gardens and Gardeners in Strathcona, past and present. Who had goats or rabbits? Who had the most diverse orchard, who grew the biggest veggies? Incorporating discussions of textiles and fibres and the results from Community Plant and Dye walks and the Youth Mapping components of the project (see below). Possible Materials: Fabric, natural dyes and inks, found objects (leaves, twigs, flowers, bottle caps), pencil, fineliner

Wild Salmon Caravan - Where did the salmon run through Strathcona? The large historical-shoreline base map is enhanced with stories of salmon streams and seafood in Strathcona, adding lines of meaning with handmade rope, beading, or salmon leather figures embroidered onto fabric. Possible Materials: fabric, paper, salmon leather, leaves and bark for cordage, seed beads, thread, natural inks

Eastside Culture Crawl - an exhibition of our Community Maps!

Family Day Stories, Scribbles, and Tall Tales: Jo Anna imagined new places to have fun and build community; Sasha showed the importance of croissant at Union Market by drawing one really big; and Monireh drew the nearby bus route that makes her life with small children so much easier
Part 1: Gathering our Thoughts and Inspiration: Youth Projects

Youth Workshops - documenting community places, people and plants

$1000 for the first part of the budget is earmarked for Youth Engagement in #TreasuringStrathcona, pending the approval of Gabe Dennis' work plan. We envision introducing the theme of the project -- map-making -- and letting the youth articulate the way they would like to explore this theme, bringing in guest speakers or artists to facilitate parts of the journey at their request.

Part 1: Gathering our Thoughts and Inspiration: Community Plant & Dye Walks

Three sessions of walks out of Strathcona Community Centre and four community dyepot studio evenings at Trillium Park dedicated to exploring and documenting the green inhabitants of Strathcona, the trees, shrubs and plants that make the neighbourhood so liveable. Dyed fabric and natural inks made as a result of these sessions will be used for creating and enhancing the large community maps for Reconciliation in Action, Sustenance Fest and Wild Salmon Caravan.

Documentation from EartHand's 2018 project Walking, Weaving and Wayfinding: The False Creek Fibreshed
Part 1: Gathering our Thoughts and Inspiration: Children's Programming, and Garden Work and Murals at the Childcare Centre

One session of garden love by EartHand artists, some new plants from the nursery, and five sessions dedicated to the kids, one at Red Fox, one at the Chat n Chew, and three for daycare, after school, or summer camp programming. This module of the project was inspired by Ronnie's desire to 'get a good feeling' when looking out over the childcare centre garden on the north side of the building. We envision the children's programming focused on mapping the imaginative landscape of the garden area, and developing imagery to use as the basis for murals on the walls facing the garden, pending funding for artists fees from the Anti-Graffiti Program (EartHand has some paint it can offer as in-kind to the project)

Different EartHand projects with children that can be folded into mapping: rope-makiing, found object installations, corn husk people, natural tapestries, fairy houses
Part 2: Bringing it All Together

One third of the budget is reserved for the second part of the project, October through December, in which the community comes together to combine, enhance, transform, or otherwise make ready to display the maps we have made. We picture the 'big reveal' being held in conjunction with the Culture Crawl weekend in late November, with the Community Centre's walls decorated with photographs of process, hand-bound books of maps, large fabric tapestries or paper banners incorporating natural materials, hand made rope, naturally-dyed fabrics, nature prints, natural inks, and .... we'll have to see!

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