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Collective Futures in the Downtown Eastside – Forum & discussion led by the desmedia collective in Vancouver

November 26, 2011 Leave a comment
Collective Futures in the Downtown Eastside

Nov 26, 2011 | 2pm
FREE

Audain Gallery

The Audain Gallery will be hosting a panel discussion by the desmedia collective. desmedia will host Collective Futures in the Downtown Eastside, a public forum where DTES artists and residents will be invited to discuss the successes and challenges of, and possible futures for, cultural collectives in the community.

About desmedia

desmedia (downtown eastside media), a collective of artists committed to working on engaged collaborative arts projects with other residents and members of the DTES, began running drop-in workshops in May 2000. Describing their project as a “living archive”, desmedia challenged the “dominant media’s over-arching image of the DTES”, and facilitated the production of painting, video, photography, and text. Exploring ways of documenting life, histories, and the vitality and creativity of the area, the workshops provided an opportunity for the possibilities of self expression, reflection and self representation.

Collective Futures in the Downtown Eastside
Panel discussion by the desmedia collective

On the occasion of this exhibition, desmedia will reassemble their complete archive in the Audain Gallery, including a workstation, shelving, videotapes, paintings, and related ephemera, and discuss potential collective models and the dissolution or morphing of desmedia (and their archive) into another form. desmedia will host Collective Futures in the Downtown Eastside, a public forum where DTES artists and residents will be invited to discuss the successes and challenges of, and possible futures for, cultural collectives in the community. Although present in the gallery, the desmedia archive will not be available for public access, only on display.

Speakers included:

Downtown Eastside Women’s Centre

Gallery Gachet

Vancouver Moving Theatre/Heart of the City Festival

Lower Mainland Painting Co.

Red Gate

AHA Media

Enterprising Women Making Art

Lifeskills Film & Video

Downtown Eastside Centre for the Arts

W2 Community Media Arts

DTES Artists Space Coalition

Points/questions for Panel participant’s response

How do you work collectively, what methodology/structure/practice and
guidelines?

What is the collaborative practices you do?

How do you engage your art practice as a collective with the DTES and
DTES residents? What support can you offer to participants living with
barriers to their practice; marginalized artists, homelessness, and
health issues?

What are the best practices/strategies that you have found in working
collectively in the DTES?

What are the challenges, difficult issues you have faced in carrying
out your work? What support/services are you accessing in the
community to further your skills in this regard?

If you have developed an ‘archive’ or body of work, how do you deal
with the issues of ownership, copyright, presentation/distribution,
and access? What if the participants change their minds a few years
down the line and want to change the way material is used that they
participated in producing or that includes them/their representation?

How can we work together to build alliances, to overcome fractures in
the community and to build on our strengths? How can long-term
resident’s voices, histories, and practices be included and what
weight do they carry in relationship to new projects and spaces?

What would you propose we do to work on creating a sustainable art
collective that is focused on providing support and opportunities for
DTES residents and members of the community, as well as being open to
people dropping in?

AHA MEDIA to livestream at Human Rights and Media Matters: A Public Forum on Media Responsibility at W2 on Dec 9, 2010 7pm-10pm

December 8, 2010 Leave a comment

Livestreaming of the event will be provided by AHA MEDIA

You can view it at http://www.qik.com/AHAMEDIA for our livestream videos

On the eve of International Human Rights Day, a public forum on “Media Matters and Human Rights” will be co-hosted by ACCESS Association of Chinese Canadians for Equality and Solidarity Society, the Chinese Canadian National Council and W2 Community Media Arts Society.

Time:  Thursday, December 9 7:00pm – 10:00pm

Location: 151 West Cordova, Vancouver

Moderated by Charlie Smith, editor of the Georgia Straight, the members of panel are:

David Eby – lawyer and currently executive director of B. C. Civil Liberties Association

Tami Starlight – anti-oppression activist and a founder of the Downtown Eastside Neighbourhood Council

Harsha Walia – anti-racist, migrant justice, human rights activist and women’s advocate

Henry Yu – historian, educator, writer and UBC associate professor of history

By donation. No host bar and light refreshments available.

We look forward to seeing you this International Human Rights Day.

Please RSVP via Facebook event
Phone W2 at 604-689-9896
or email
w2tv@creativetechnology.org

AHA MEDIA and W2′s Fearless City Mobile Program at Women’s Voices at the Table for International Women’s Day Conference in Vancouver on Sat March 6, 2010

March 7, 2010 Leave a comment

International Women’s Day in Vancouver 2010
http://www.iwdvancouver.ca

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Below is a photo of Clyde Wright, Peter Davies and Richard Czaban of AHA MEDIA and  W2′s Fearless City Mobile Program ready to do some mobile media event coverage. This photo was taken outside of Vancouver Public Library where the Women’s Voices at the Table for International Women’s Day in Vancouver 2010 was about to begin :)

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Below is a video of Miriam Palacios of Oxfam Canada welcoming us to Women’s Voices at the Table at International Women’s Day Conference in Vancouver on Saturday March 6, 2010

Oxfam Canada
http://www.oxfam.ca

This video was filmed by April Smith of AHA MEDIA on a New Media camera – Panasonic DMC-ZS3. AHA MEDIA is about exploring mobile media production through New Media cameras. For a better quality version of this video, please DM April Smith @AprilFilms on Twitter or Facebook.com/AprilFilms

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Below is a video of the Ranging Grannies singing at Women’s Voices at the Table for International Women’s Day in Vancouver on March 6, 2010

Ranging Grannies of Vancouver
http://www.vcn.bc.ca/ragigran/

This video was filmed by April Smith of AHA MEDIA on a New Media camera – Panasonic DMC-ZS3. AHA MEDIA is about exploring mobile media production through New Media cameras. For a better quality version of this video, please DM April Smith @AprilFilms on Twitter or Facebook.com/AprilFilms

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Below is a photo, Lianne Payne speaks about working with projects and organizations with a social and cultural mandate. April Smith is a social media maker and community advocate working as Project Coordinator for W2’s Fearless City Mobile program and AHA MEDIA. Eileen Gillette researches accessibility, the digital divide, and information policy.

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Below is a photo is Richard Czaban, Clyde Wright and Peter Davies of AHA MEDIA and W2′s Fearless City Mobile Program at the Media Table for Women’s Voices at the Table for International Women’s Day Conference 2010

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Below is a photo of April Smith, Lianne Payne and Mo Simpson at Women’s Voices at the Table for International Women’s Day Conference 2010

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Below is a photo of April Smith, Andrea Reimer – Vancouver City Councillor and her Daughter, Friend  at  Women’s Voices at the Table for International Women’s Day Conference 2010

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Below is a photo of the International Women’s Day conference in Vancouver

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Below is a video of Earle Peach and Solidarity Notes Choir at Women’s Voices at the Table for the International Women’s Day Conference on Saturday March 6 , 2010 in Vancouver

Earle Peach
http://www.EarlePeach.com

Solidarity Notes Choir
http://www.solidaritynotes.ca/

This video was filmed by Richard Czaban of AHA MEDIA on a New Media camera – Fujifilm S200EXR. AHA MEDIA is about exploring mobile media production through New Media cameras. For a better quality version of this video, please DM April Smith @AprilFilms on Twitter or Facebook.com/AprilFilms

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Below is a photo of  Lauren Gill and April Smith at Women’s Voices at the Table for International Women’s Day Conference 2010

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Below is a photo and video montage  with highlights from the International Women’s Day Rally and Conference on Saturday March 6 , 2010 in Vancouver

This photo and video montage was created by Richard Czaban of AHA MEDIA and filmed on a New Media camera – Fujifilm S200EXR. AHA MEDIA is about exploring mobile media production through New Media cameras. For a better quality version of this video, please DM April Smith @AprilFilms on Twitter or Facebook.com/AprilFilms

April Smith of W2′s Fearless City Mobile Program and AHA MEDIA is very proud to be a speaker with Lianne Payne and Eileen Gillette on Media for Women’s Voices at the Table during International Women’s Day Rally & Conference

March 4, 2010 Leave a comment

http://www.iwdvancouver.ca/

Women’s Voice’s at the Table

International Women’s Day Program

Saturday, March 6 (Vancouver, Canada)

This event is part of a broadly-based Canadian and global civil society campaign to inspire and mobilize citizens to be heard and to claim a seat “at the table” with the leaders at the upcoming G8/20 meeting taking place in Canada. We know that often women’s voices and needs are ignored and this is our opportunity to put our issues on the tables

The 2010 International Women’s Day will start with a celebratory rally at the North Plaza of the Art Gallery at noon followed by a conference at 1:30 pm at the Vancouver Public Library. There will be several display tables featuring women’s organizations addressing various issues.Each table with a speaker and YOU, the participants will come up with a series of very concrete policy recommendations and demands to be presented to government representatives regarding women’s rights issues.

Participants concerned about human rights issues and gender equality are encouraged to attend and contribute to the conference.

Table Discussion Topics:

Table #1. Economy
Table #2. Poverty and Income
Table #3. Housing
Table #4. Climate Change and Food Security
Table #5. Violence Against Women
Table #6. Femicide
Table #7. Women in Solidarity
Table #8. Indigenous Women
Table #9. Labour rights
Table #10. Education
Table #11. Health Care
Table #12. Media
Table #13. Access to Justice
Table #14. Women’s Leadership and Decision Making
Table #15. Women, Peace and Militarism


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Media

The speakers will address the issue of women’s voice in the media, focusing on how far women have come in terms of their access to the media and the challenges they are facing.

Lianne Paynne is dedicated to working with projects and organizations with a social and cultural mandate. April Smith is a social media maker and community advocate working as Project Coordinator for W2’s Fearless City Mobile program. Eileen Gillette researches accessibility, the digital divide, and information policy.

Schedule of Activities:

12:00pm -1:00pm Celebratory Rally (Art Gallery, North Plaza)

1:30pm – 2:00pm Display Tables at Vancouver Public Library

Welcoming – music

2:00pm-3:00pm Table Discussions, round 1
3:00pm-4:00pm Table Discussions, round 2
4:00pm-4:15pm Break-refreshments served
4:15pm-5:00pm Presentation of Resolutions

Music and Closing remarks

This event is organized by the following groups:
-We*ACT
-BWSS
-Oxfam Canada
-Amnesty International
-BC Teachers’ Federation(BCTF)
-North Shore Women’s Centre
-We Can End all Violence against Women Campaign
-BC Federation of Labour
-BC Government and Service Employees’ Union (BCGEU)
-Justice Education Society of BC
-Make Poverty History
-BC Council for International Cooperation (BCCIC)

AHA MEDIA from Vancouver Downtown Eastside is very proud to be featured in Robert Matas’ article “Clustering In Action” in “The Globe and Mail” National newspaper

December 19, 2009 1 comment

Clustering in action

Robert Matas

Vancouver — From Saturday’s Globe and Mail Published on Friday, Dec. 18, 2009 10:13PM EST

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/national/clustering-in-action/article1406276/

AHA Media is a struggling new company incubated in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside by a government-funded agency that turned to theories of a Harvard University professor more often associated with Silicon Valley and Hollywood than with revitalization of urban slums.

April Smith, one of the company’s founders, drifted into the Downtown Eastside after a serious car accident left her with severe memory loss and other injuries. With no money, she ended up living in temporary shelters and hotels dominated by predator pimps and drug addicts, she said recently in an interview.

Her life changed after she began cartooning to tell the stories of people she met at the hotel and on the street. A local community group inspired her to think about reporting activities in her neighbourhood without going through traditional media. She became part of an apprenticeship program developed by a cluster of local companies. After completing the program, she worked with others to open a new business in the area, AHA Media.

Prof. Michael Porter has written extensively about the advantages of clustering as an approach to economic development. Concentrating interconnected companies, specialized suppliers and associated educational institutions in the same geographic area fosters increased employment, productivity and innovation, he said. The clusters become a catalyst for innovation that feeds economic growth.

Building Opportunities with Business, a government-funded agency, dedicated to revival of the local economy, embraced clustering at the suggestion of an ex-board member who had studied at Harvard.

Ms. Smith was part of a training program developed by a cluster that included Bell Canada, the FireHall Arts Centre, a local digital filmmaking program that works with youth at risk called Intersections Media, a B.C. government employment program called BladeRunners and a non-profit group working in social media called W2: Community Media Arts.

The training program “gave me a big, big start,” she said. “It gave me a sense of direction.”

Ms. Smith is now on Twitter, Facebook, Youtube and Flickr. She describes herself as a mobile new-media videographer and social media content-producer. She shoots camera-phone videos and live-streams events onto the Internet.

To speak with April Smith more personally

http://www.facebook.com/AprilFilms
http://www.twitter.com/AprilFilms
http://www.twitter.com/April

To see more of AHA MEDIA:

http://www.facebook.com/AHAMEDIA

http://www.twitter.com/AHAMEDIA

http://www.youtube.com/AHAFilm

http://www.flickr.com/photos/AHAMEDIA/sets

Clustering pushes local businesses to think how they can work together, BOB’s chief executive officer, Shirley Chan, said. But, unlike Silicon Valley, the Downtown Eastside businesses do not have resources to carry out many of their ideas.

“Many employers here are marginal, they do not have a lot of money. That is why they are here. The rent is cheap,” she said. “ Without finding sources of funding, there is not a lot that can be created.”

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AHA MEDIA wishes to thank the following :)

Robert Matas, Reporter for Globe and Mail http://www.theglobeandmail.com

Shirley Chan of BOB ( Building Opportunities with Business ) http://www.buildingopportunities.org

Irwin Oostindie of W2 Community Media Arts http://www.creativetechnology.org

Lani Russwurm of DTES CAN ( Downtown Eastside Community Arts Network ) http://tinyurl.com/yaqw5mz

Lorraine Murphy of Raincoaster Media http://RaincoasterMedia.com

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