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authority records
CURRENT Symposium
CS · Corporate body · 2017-

CURRENT is a multidisciplinary and intersectional music and electronic art symposium working with women and non-binary artists in Vancouver and the Pacific Northwest. Its primary organizers are Ashlee Luk, Soledad Muñoz, and Nancy Lee. The first iteration of the project was a 3-day music and arts showcase featuring events, panels, youth mentorships and workshops, which took place July 28th-30th, 2017. Participants included:

DJ Daniela Karina
Ruth Scheuing
Soledad Muñoz
Wynne Palmer
Norah Lorway
Kiran Bhumber
Holly Peck
Sabrina Dzugalod
DJ Nishkosheh
T. Wan
Nicola Awang
Nancy Lee
Tifanie Lamiel
Minimal Violence
Yu Su
Nancy Dru
Erica Lapadat-Janzen
Kurumi Shiowaki
Nomad Black
Rhi Blossom
Kasey Riot
DJ China Aquafina
Krystal Paraboo
DJ Homogenius

The goal of this symposium was to foster and disseminate feminist content through cross-pollination of ideas and intergenerational knowledge sharing.

FNVC · Corporate body · 1991-1998

The First Nations Video Collective (FNVC) was established in 1991, originally under the name of the First Nations Video Apprenticeship Program (FNVAP). FNVAP focused on acquiring funding and creating paid opportunities for Indigenous artists to apprentice and receive mentoring in the emerging art and field of video production. FNVAP began as program of the Satellite Video Exchange Society, but became increasingly autonomous and independent over its existence.

In the early years, FNVAP was primarily focused on connecting emerging artists to opportunities to work with Margo Kane on her video project, The River: Claiming a Video Territory, as well as with Dana Claxton. During 1992, FNVAP also offered a workshop in Kamloops for First Nations individuals as the program began to grow beyond the original singular video project.

In 1993, the program expanded into the First Nations Video Access Program. FNAP 's mandate broadened to include making equipment accessible, creating training opportunities, giving mini-grants, and connecting Indigenous and First Nations producers and artists. FNAP was run collectively, with at least one member serving as the paid FNAP coordinator within the Satellite Video Exchange Society. FNAP members staffed a FNAP desk within the SVES offices at 1965 Main Street in Vancouver.

As the program grew, FNAP began to regularly offer workshops and bring in speakers, as part of its expanding vision and mandate. Notable members during this time included Zachery Longboy, Cleo Reece, and Cease Wyss. Building on the success of the networking, community and relationships nourished in FNAP as well as through emerging national networks, the collective set new goals - notably a database of First Nations video and producers, an intentional training program for individuals, a showcase, and a BC version of the Aboriginal Film and Video Alliance. During this time FNAP was involved with producing a number of videos on behalf of conferences and various collaborative projects.

In 1996, many of the original individuals began to move on, and FNAP once again shifted focus. SanDee Doxtdator became the FNAP coordinator and launched a re-visioning and renaming for the group. At this time FNAP became the First Nations Video Collective and became fully autonomous from the Satellite Video Exchange Society. FNVC produced a newsletter as well as a variety of screenings and open houses. The coordinator, guided by the New FNVC objectives and identified community needs, sought funding and support from various funding bodies, Indigenous organizations, and video community members to prepare a training course.

During 1997, the collective then ran the twelve week Intensive Video Production Course. Attendees included individuals such as Allan Hopkins, Stephanie Llewllyn, Charlotte Wuttke, Michelle Sylliboy, Tony Melting Tallow, Thirza Cuthand, Michelle McGeough, Warren Arcan and Adele Kruger. The mentees each produced a short video PSA which were combined into the collaborative video work, Si"Elu"taxw . Si"Elu"taxw was screened at a number of festivals both in the pacific northwest and across the continent.

Following the production course and re-visioning, in 1998, FNVC as it was came to an end. Some past members such as Cease Wyss and Dana Claxton went on to launch the Indigenous Media Arts Group (IMAG), which also operated out of the Satellite Video Exchange Society for much of its existence. IMAG produced festivals from 1998 to 2006 showcasing the Indigenous media artworks being created and the artists who had been involved with or inspired by early initiatives like the FNVC.

GBV · Corporate body · 1980-1986

The concept of Gayblevision is universally accredited to Gregg Cutts (1953-1983). Cutts had moved from Halifax to Vancouver in the 1970s. In addition to his founding role in Gayblevision, he was also involved with the Coming Out Show on Coop Radio, the Vancouver Gay Community Centre (V.G.C.C.), and the Society for Political Action for Gay People (S.P.A.G.).

The official minutes of a Satellite Video Exchange Society (VIVO) of a meeting held January 30, 1980 records Cutts enquiring as to how best to record a S.P.A.G.-sponsored City of Vancouver all-candidates meeting that would be focusing on Gay rights. SVES referred him to MM (Metro Media, a video access centre for alternative media production) and cable (Vancouver Cable 10).

In an interview with McEwen and Cutts rebroadcast in Gayblevision’s 6th ‘birthday’ episode (at 02:33), Cutts confirms he collaborated with Cable 10 to record that meeting and afterwards approached Cable 10 about a series for the gay community.

A meeting was called to gauge community interest and 22 men and 6 women attended. One of them was Mary Anne McEwen who had been invited by a friend. She became one of the three Gayblevision co-founders along with Cutts and Verne Powers.

McEwen (1946-2011) was the only original member with media experience. McEwen had been educated at University of British Columbia (1963-1967) – and was expelled from her UBC sorority in 1965 for being a lesbian – and took film and video workshops at Simon Fraser University (1970-1972). She had run her own production company since 1977.

A 1980 West Ender newspaper article states it was Gayblevision that caused Verne Powers to finally come out, and Powers was quoted as saying the program had ‘literally’ changed his life. Powers worked on the first five episodes, and is the one who interviewed Tennessee Williams in a seminal Gayblevision episode. Powers left Vancouver to pursue other interests in late 1980.

Gayblevision was rebranded as Pacific Wave starting with its 19 December 1983 episode through December 1984. The BC provincial Social Credit government’ s neo-liberal policies were undermining Human Rights legislation and defunding gay, lesbian and feminist groups. In the wake of their actions an LGBT community still debating the pros and cons of coming out became more reticent to expose their sexual identity in public. The effect on Gayblevision was significant.

The last episode identified as Pacific Wave was December 1984. From the beginning of 1985 until the end of the series, it was once again referred to as Gayblevision.

Don Durrell in a Body Politic interview talked about Vancouver gays “diving back into the closet at an alarming rate” and the lack of community volunteer support for the program, let alone appearing as subject.

“Will Solidarity Be Restrained?” Body Politic, December 1983, Page 6

The Gayblevision audience was introduced to Pacific Wave during the final Gayblevision episode (Episode 41 at 20:30) of its original run on November 7th, 1983.

The show continued as Pacific Wave until December 1984. From its first show in 1985 until the end of the series in 1986, it was once again identified as Gayblevision.

John Grayson
JG · Person · 1943 -

Throughout his life John Grayson has been a sound sculptor, university lecturer, experimental theatre producer, and farmer. He has also occasionally produced television programs for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. He organized and conducted numerous workshops, seminars, international conferences and exhibitions for a diverse range of institutions in such areas as: the theatre arts; perceptual awareness; computer art systems; sound sculpture; expanded music systems; and various facets of music education. He was a founder of the Aesthetic Research Centre of Canada. The Aesthetic Research Centre (A.R.C.) was a Canadian publisher of academic books, scientific journals, LP recordings and graphic scores in the field of sound sculpture, avant-garde music and process music, as well as neurofeedback in the arts. A.R.C. Publications was founded by John Grayson in Vancouver in the early 1970s and was active between 1971 and 1977.

Lenore Herb
LHA · Person · 1947-2010

Lenore Herb (1947-2010) AKA Doreen Gray, was an artist, activist and provocateur in Vancouver’s art and environmentalist communities. She was a videographer, photographer, writer, curator, arts administrator, social and environmental activist, and an archivist (notably for bill bissett).

Lenore was directly involved with blewointmentpress (1960s +), Pacific Cinema (1970s-1980s) and Metro Media (1979-1985), as well as a participant in the Sound Gallery and Trips Festival, the Floating Free School, and Knowplace Free School. She worked to stop the Ashcroft/Cache Creek hazardous waste incinerator, was President of SPEC (the Society Promoting Environmental Conservation, 1990-1995), on the Board of Directors for the Recycling Council of British Columbia (1990-1994), and on the management committee of the British Columbia Environmental Network.

Mary Anne McEwen
MAM · Person · 1946-2011

Mary Anne McEwen was educated at University of British Columbia with a BA in Fine Arts, Literature and Anthropology (1963-1967) and President of Women’s Council, Lower Mall Residences (now Vanier Place). Between 1970 and 1972, she took film and video workshops at Simon Fraser University, going on to earn a MA in Liberal Studies.

She was a founding co-producer of Gayblevision, founding Board member of Vancouver’s Out On Screen Festival, founding member of Women In Film and Video Vancouver, and member of B.C. Film, Praxis, Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television, and VIVO Media Arts Centre. She was President and Creative Director of Forward Focus Productions Ltd. from 1977-1997 and a freelance writer, editor, analyst and story editor from 1998-2011. Mary Anne was a pioneer in Vancouver’s feminist, LGBT and women in film and television communities.

Meg Torwl
MT · Person · 1967 - 21 Jun. 2013

Meg Torwl was an artist and activist worked in video, new media, audio, photography, writing, performance and arts advocacy. Her work has been exhibited, broadcast, published and performed in her native New Zealand, Canada, the United States, and the United Kingdom. She produced five new media projects – meditative colour and water photography based installations: Singing Bowls (2004), AQWAI (2006), TIARIKA (2008), Going Coastal (2010), and PORTAL/PORTAGE (2011), and directed three documentaries distributed by Video Out: Act Your Age!? (2000), where have all the lesbians gone? (2001), and Towards the day…we are all free (2007). Meg also worked in radio, producing 50 half-hour programs with Radio New Zealand National’s One in Five disability community program (2007/8), with a focus on youth, art, multiculturalism and policy. She worked for arts organizations in community outreach and project coordination for the National Film Board of Canada (2004), CBC TV (2006), KickstArt Disability Arts and Culture (2009/10), and BC Regional Integrated Arts Network (2010). Meg was a visual artist, a graduate of The Writers Studio (2011) at SFU, and published numerous books of poetry.

Renegade Library
RL · Corporate body · 1996-1998

During the years 1996 to 1998, the Renegade Library developed as both a social practice, and a collection of over 500 artist books. Originating with a mail art call for “collaborative mail art in book form,” this project of Lois Klassen in conjunction with the Art Gallery of Southwestern Manitoba, brought together over 700 artists from some 40 countries. Together, their correspondences produced a delightful collection of zines, assemblings, multiples, add & pass, miniatures, visual poetry, small presses, and much more. Renegade Library is an infectiously inspiring artifact of a 90s mail art and artist book experimentation. Today the Renegade Library occupies 20 boxes, which are individually being acquired by public artist book collections. Through this distribution, Renegade Library has taken up residence in collections including Art Gallery of Southwestern Manitoba (Brandon), Also As Well Too (Winnipeg), Artexte (Montreal), Centro de Desarollo de las Artes Visuales (Havana), Institute of American Indian Arts (Santa Fe), Bautista Kabistan Esquivel Collective (San Salvador), and Emily Carr University Library (Vancouver), and the Crista Dahl Media Library & Archives at the VIVO Media Arts Centre (Vancouver).

Terry Ketler
TK · Person · [19--] -

Terry Ketler was a founding member of the Metro Media Society of Greater Vancouver. Metro Media was founded in 1971, one of the groups to grow out of Intermedia. Its activities included “training citizens in the use of of small format television equipment, cable casting community programs over Channel 10 in Vancouver, and, bringing awareness of communications policies to the community level.” In addition to providing access to video equipment for the alternative and art communities, Metro Media worked closely with educational and social service agencies to promote media democracy. Metro Media provided access to video equipment to many Vancouver producers. Between 1971 and 1974, Metro Media was responsible for over 500 hours of cable programming. It continued until 1983.