Posted on Mar 6, 2018 in Events, Talk

[su_spacer size=”5″] A series of informal sessions of research and knowledge exchange.

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Tuesday, March 6, 2018, 7-8:30 pm

Mount Pleasant Community Centre, 1 Kingsway


This is a conversation between Coll Thrush, Kamala Todd & attendees. Creating home and a sense of place means building relationships. How well do we relate/give back/listen to the land and waters that are our home? Vancouver is so often seen as an international city belonging to no one/everyone. Its landscapes and narratives have been transformed and framed in ways that showcase the Anglo-colonial culture as the founders and caretakers of this coastal city. How are newcomers/settlers/guests/visitors complicit in this overwriting of Coast Salish people and their continuity on this land since time out of mind? How do the stories (re)emerge and remind us all that this is a place with ancient laws, relationships, histories, ancestors, cosmologies which are in fact the guiding frameworks for life on this Musqueam, Tsleil-Waututh, Squamish place? This is a conversation towards decolonizing the city, asking questions about learning the laws and expectations and responsibilities before we assume permission and right mindedness to “come ashore” and be good visitors.


Coll Thrush is Associate Professor of history at the University of British Columbia, where he teaches Indigenous, settler colonial and place-based histories. He is the author of Native Seattle: Histories from the Crossing-Over Place. He is also the co-editor of Phantom Past, Indigenous Presence: Native Ghosts in North American Culture and History (2011) and Indigenous London: Native Travelers at the Heart of Empire (2016). His current project, entitled Slaughter Town, focuses on landscape, trauma, and memory in his hometown of Auburn, Washington, formerly known as Slaughter. 

Kamala Todd is a Metis-Cree community planner who makes films and writes about the stories and cultures layered within the Indigenous lands upon which she is a grateful guest. She has a Masters degree in Geography (UBC) and is the author of numerous documentary films and community arts projects. For six years she was the City of Vancouver’s Aboriginal Social Planner, and she continues to work with the City as an independent consultant to help build relationships within the context of (re)conciliation. She writes and directs for children’s television, including the Indigenous science series Coyote’s Crazy Smart Science Show and the Cree language series Nehiyawetan, both on APTN. Todd lives with her partner and two sons on the Sunshine Coast.


Image Credit: Alberto Cruz — Creative Commons

Visit to listen to an audio recording of the event.



The Foreshore is a collaborative multi-year project between Contemporary Art GalleryOther Sights,  Access Gallery  The Foreshore is inspired by the deep influence of the waterways on our cities and societies on the West Coast. As a place of unclear jurisdiction, and thus of contestation, friction, and constant movement, those who dwell in this zone must continually adapt to a changing environment. As a site it conjures histories specific to this region: narratives of trade and exchange, habitation and nourishment, resistance and violent erasure. Considering the potential of this zone as both concept and site, the project asks the following: How do we generate conditions of emergence? How can we take up space differently? How do we support unruly practices and futures?

PART I:  The Foreshore events in 2016-2017 were hosted in the storefront adjacent to Access’ gallery space at 222 East Georgia. These were bi-weekly open discussion sessions informed by invited artists, writers, curators, and activists. Adding to this exciting program, there was also an artist-in-residence series to provide space and time to artists interested in addressing questions of the foreshore.

PART II: The Foreshore continues from its initial exploration as outlined in Part I. Expanding the reach of the project, sessions are held in public meeting rooms at the Mount Pleasant Community Centre and the nə́c̓aʔmat ct Strathcona Branch, Vancouver Public Library. Part II is comprised of four sessions running throughout 2018 


The Contemporary Art Gallery (CAG) is a non-profit public art gallery dedicated to the research, exhibition, education and documentation of contemporary visual art as it is practiced locally through to internationally. It aspires to generate significant audiences for its innovative and diverse programmes through free access and a profile that is international in scope.

The CAG is the longest standing independent public art gallery dedicated to presenting contemporary visual art in Vancouver. We deliver between ten and twenty exciting exhibitions and off-site projects each year, provide an extensive range of learning and public programs for adults, families and children, offer a series of residencies for Canadian and international artists directly contributing to the local scene, and publish insightful catalogues that create a lasting legacy of exhibited work. We do this while offering all of our programs free of charge through an admission by donation policy. We believe that access to, enjoyment of and engagement with contemporary art and the surrounding debates should be available and open to all.

The Contemporary Art Gallery acknowledges that the area called Vancouver is within the unceded Indigenous territories belonging to the xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), and Səl̓ílwətaʔ/Selilwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations.

Other Sights gratefully acknowledges the support of the British Columbia Arts Council, The Canadian Union of Public Employees Local 15, and the Canada Council for the Arts.

Established as an non-profit artist-run centre in 1991, Access Gallery is platform for emergent and experimental art practices. We enable critical conversations and risk taking through new configurations of audience, artists, and community. For more information visit

Access Gallery gratefully acknowledges the support of the Canada Council for the Arts, the Government of British Columbia through the BC Arts Council and BC Gaming, the City of Vancouver, the Hamber Foundation, the Burrard Arts Foundation, the Contemporary Art Gallery, NSB Reederei, and our committed donors, members and volunteers.