Artist Talks

Amanda White, Teresa Carlesimo, and Michael Dirisio
PARKhive

PARKhive is a community engaged, public, mobile art and research project, and collaboration. PARKhive aims to engage its visitors in conversations about the urban canopy, local flora and the history of city parks, while encouraging citizen engagement and critical dialogue in the development of green space. Since 2014, we have been developing this work collaboratively as it bridges our various research and creation interests such as; artists’ publications, socially engaged arts, public interventions, urban ecology, urban development and sustainability. For the Undisciplined Conference 2016, we propose an artists’ talk, in which we will elaborate on the nature of our collaborative work and the project itself; its function in the community, as an artwork, as well as its various research aspects . This talk will mark the beginning of a series of interventions in the Kingston community with the project. In building upon our previous events, we hope to begin connecting other urban histories, environmental initiatives and dialogue across Southern Ontario communities.

To date, PARKhive ’s activities have taken place in Toronto, where our mobile archive and greenhouse travels around the city collecting and distributing seeds from city parks. In addition to seed collection and distribution, we have developed a series of free publications relating to our mandate that both extends the project into community research and provides a lasting record of our ephemeral activities. PARKhive has worked independently by producing public interventions, as well as participating in art exhibitions including Grow Op 2015 (Gladstone Hotel), and working collaboratively with community organizations such as the David Suzuki Foundation’s Homegrown National Parks Project (Park Crawl, 100inOneDay).

 

Stefy McKnight
Hawk Eye View: Shifting the Surveillant Gaze

Hawk Eye View (2015) is a body of work that looks at the history of third party surveillance in North America. Considering Snowden’s revelations (2013), Hawk Eye View explicitly looks at NSA and CSIS sites through Google Earth imagery. Google Maps and Earth retrieve user metadata via GPS, direction searches and IP addresses. By looking at Five Eyes it is evident that Canada and the United States’ surveillance plans are inextricably linked to one another. My artist talk looks at the ways that Google Earth and Maps reinstate some of the ways that the Canadian and US government acquire metadata to politically ensure a survival state. This exhibition was exhibited at the Tett Centre for Creativity and Learning in October 2015. Hawk Eye View is an assortment of installations: wallpaper, banners and prints of NSA and CSIS headquarters. Interactively, viewers will load information and addresses of the intelligence sites using a QRcode reader on their mobile device. The surveillance gaze shifts by giving viewers the tools to observe the institutions that are normally doing the ‘surveilling.’ This talk will look at the methodologies, creation process and ways that Hawk Eye View critiques and engages with third party surveillance in North America.

Stéphanie McKnight (Stéfy) is a Kingston based artist with a bachelor of fine arts degree from Nipissing University. Her research focuses on gender performativity, privacy, media, surveillance post 9/11 and Edward Snowden revelations. Stéfy’s primary artistic medium is installation art in forms of site specific, video; experimental photography, performance and found objects. Stéfy has recently exhibited work at the Tett Centre for Creativity and Learning, OCAD University, WKP Kennedy Gallery and White Water Gallery in North Bay and the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts. In 2015 her work Coded, I Am was shortlisted for the Queen’s University Research Photo Contest .