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Zoom Discussion with Michael Farnan and Leah Decter
April 23 @ 12:00 pm - 1:30 pm
Join us for a sneak preview of Michael Farnan’s upcoming solo exhibition, Canoe Fight: From Reverence to Redress, on view when we reopen to the public.
This upcoming exhibition highlights Victoria Harbour-based artist Michael Farnan’s recent work challenging the colonial legacies and representational practices that continue to privilege and empower settler history in this region. By featuring the canoe—an Indigenous technology that was deployed by white settlers to expand the colonial state into the Canadian interior—Farnan demonstrates how beloved Canadian cultural symbols actively inscribe Canadian settler culture as the natural inheritor of both land and power in this area and beyond.
Michael will be joined by Dr. Leah Decter, the Canada Research Chair in Creative Technologies and Co-director of the Centre for Inter-media Art and Decolonial Expression at NSCAD University; Dr. Decter also contributes an essay for this exhibition.
Registration link: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_6PxuLm6CQIicrdBtp1STZg
Michael Farnan is a multidisciplinary artist and educator, living and working in Victoria Harbour, ON. Farnan’s work addresses settler-based decolonizing strategies centred on disrupting and unsettling Canada’s history of colonialism and dominant Eurocentric ideologies of place and space. Farnan’s exhibitions, videos, and performances have been shown throughout Canada, including his participation in the upcoming group exhibition Gardenship and State at Museum London, and collaborative artist pages project, A Lockdown Correspondence with Adrian Stimson, in the upcoming special issue of PUBLIC Journal, co-curated by Leah Decter and Dr. Carla Taunton. Farnan’s work has been supported by the Canada Council of the Arts, the Ontario Arts Council, and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council. Farnan holds a Studio-based Ph.D. in Art and Visual Culture from Western University, where he was awarded a full multi-year SSHRC CGS Doctoral award for his research into Canadian representational history and discourses surrounding colonialism, wilderness, nature, and nationhood. Canoe Fight: From Reverence to Redress is Michael Farnan’s first solo exhibition at the MacLaren Art Centre. The artist acknowledges the assistance of the Canada Council for the Arts and the Ontario Arts Council.
Leah Decter is an inter-media/performance artist, educator and scholar based in Treaty 1 territory in Winnipeg. Working from a critical white settler perspective her current artistic projects address social-spatial dynamics of settler colonial contexts and consider the ethics of being-in-relation in spaces of Indigenous sovereignty. Decter has exhibited, presented and screened her artwork widely in Canada, including at the Winnipeg Art Gallery, Plugin ICA, Dunlop Art Gallery, McKenzie Art Gallery, Trinity Square Video, Kamloops Art Gallery and Grunt Gallery, and internationally in the US, UK, Germany, Malta, Netherlands, India, and Australia. Her writing has been published in the Journal of Critical Race Inquiry, The Land We Are: Artists and Writers Unsettle the Politics of Reconciliation, Canadian Theatre Review, Liminalities: A Journal of Performance Studies and Fuse Magazine’s Decolonial Aesthetics Issue. She is currently co-editing a special issue of PUBLIC Journal with Dr. Carla Taunton.
Decter holds a PhD in Cultural Studies from Queens University and an MFA in New Media from Transart Institute. In 2017 She was a Visiting Research Fellow at University of New South Wales’ National Institute for Experimental Arts in Sydney, Australia. From 2019-2020 she was a SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellow in Theatre and Performance Studies at York University’s Sensorium Centre for Digital Arts and Technology. She is currently the Canada Research Chair in Creative Technologies and Co-director of the Centre for Inter-media Art and Decolonial Expression at NSCAD University.