Artists in Place: The Bunkhouse Project
Artists in Place: The Bunkhouse Project is an artist-in-residence pilot program sponsored by the City of Saskatoon, with a grant from the Saskatchewan Arts Board’s Artists in Communities program. Through the generosity and vision of the Saskatoon Forestry Farm Park & Zoo staff, the historic Bunkhouse has been renovated and reimagined as artist studio space. This furthers one of the key directions of the City’s Culture Plan Refresh to Foster Creative Placemaking by providing a platform for a Saskatoon civic facility to host artists and engage the community through public art projects.
Artists in Residence
Several local artists have been selected to set up studios in the Bunkhouse for a year-long residency:
Danica Lorer has spent the past twenty years as a professional storyteller. She has been struck by lightning, a moose, a rogue semi-tire, vehicles, and the odd strange idea. She is a freelance writer, workshop facilitator, face and body painter, poet, and the host of Shaw’s literary arts program 'Lit Happens'. She has been published in untethered, Poetry All Over the Floor, Grain, release any words stuck inside of you, and Alice Unbound: Beyond Wonderland.
Rooted in Story: Danica’s creative process draws from her environment. While working at the Bunkhouse she will be surrounded by trees, history, and creatures. These are some of her favourite themes to explore with all of her senses for creating new stories for and with people of all ages. Story grows in communication with others and the world around us.
Ursa is the solo electronic audio/video project of Lenore Maier. She produces ambient electronic works that drift between drone and dream, somewhere between sound effect and musical sound. Her debut album “Prism System” navigates fluidly through dream state and hypnagogic consciousness. She harvests and edits found video footage and programs it to be viewed and experienced in tandem with her sonic compositions.
Ursa's work at the Bunkhouse will combine elements of electronic audio, 35mm analog photography, 8mm and 16mm film. She will be composing and recording her second full length album while in residency at the Bunkhouse, utilizing field recordings and samples taken from the surrounding area and abroad. She will shoot Super 8 footage and explore over 15 reels of unseen found footage on 16mm which she purchased at an estate sale. She will then splice and edit her curated clips together becoming a live visual component to be screened during her musical performances. She also plans to explore collaborative analog photography, with a variety of photographers, to create an extended sonic photo essay album artwork.
Wendy Sharpe & Marcel Petit
Wendy Sharpe is a painter, fibre artist and filmmaker living and working in Saskatoon in a studio located in Riversdale. Wendy’s acrylic paintings on canvas portray Saskatoon alleys. Recent paintings were included in a group exhibition at 330g, Saskatoon, and Gallery 1313, Toronto, and will be included in forthcoming exhibitions at the St. Thomas Moore Gallery and Frances Morrison Library Gallery in 2019. Wendy’s fibre work has been exhibited at the Saskatchewan Craft Council and featured in the One Take Super 8, 2017 film festival. Wendy was a mentee in CARFAC Saskatchewan’s 2017-2018 mentorship program, and she is a member of CARFAC, Saskatchewan Filmpool Cooperative, AKA Artist Run, PAVED Arts, Saskatchewan Craft Council, and Remai Modern.
Métis artist, Marcel Petit, is an independent producer, filmmaker, actor, photographer and playwright from Saskatoon. Marcel has several film and video works to his name including short dramatic pieces to feature documentaries. Recent theatre work includes Salt Baby, Reckoning and Blow Wind (where he was finally able to sing). In addition to his professional creative practice, Marcel runs the Core Neighbourhood Youth Co-op, which is an amazing youth centre in Saskatoon.
Good Luck Finding It is a new collaborative visual conversation between Wendy Sharpe and Marcel Petit on their journey through rural Saskatchewan searching for ghost towns and abandoned buildings. Good Luck Finding It consists of 40 new works (20 paintings, 20 photographs) that are presented in pairs and continues the conversation about what it means to small communities when the population declines and nature starts to take over. Good Luck Finding It is on display at Chapel Gallery, North Battleford, from February 8 – March 24, 2019.
During their yearlong residency at The Bunkhouse Project in 2019, Marcel and Wendy will continue to explore collaborative conversation through various mediums including filmmaking, fibre art and playwriting.
Muveddet Al-Katib was born in 1978 in Antioch (Antakya) in Turkey, a melting pot of civilization and culture in a mosaic of art, cultures and history. Always passionate about art and the visual world around her, Muveddet completed her BFA while taking inspiration from the art, history and surroundings of her home city and native country to embark on the path that her unique artistic vision has led her on, resulting in shows and workshops in Saskatchewan, on a national stage in Canada and internationally. Presently Muveddet is working on projects related to connecting Indigenous and Newcomers to Canada through art exploring culture and language in symbols. Muveddet recently had a piece selected for the Saskatchewan Arts Board's permanent collection.
“My belief is that art shapes all aspects of our lives and the stories we tell and the lives we lead. In a changing world, we are exposed to new cultures and people from everywhere and new experiences as we try to find our own place in society while understanding other places as well. I believe we can use art to assist us in understanding new groups, faces, cultures, ideas and the stories they represent.”
History of the Bunkhouse
Located on Treaty Six Territory and the traditional homeland of the Métis, the Sutherland Forest Nursery Station opened in 1913 as a tree nursery station and model farm with landscaped grounds, a Superintendent’s residence, operational buildings, propagation fields, trial shelterbelts, and experimental plots. The Bunkhouse was built in 1916 and used as a residence for workers. The nursery closed in 1965 and a portion of the site was reopened as the Forestry Farm Park by the City of Saskatoon in 1966. The Saskatoon Forestry Farm Park & Zoo opened in 1972. Since that time, the Bunkhouse has been used as administrative offices, a veterinarian office, and more recently a storage facility. In 1990, the Saskatoon Forestry Farm Park & Zoo was designated a national historic site in recognition of its role as a Forest Nursery Station.