Public Art Proposals: Abridged (DDM Connective) and HIVE (Alexandra Haeseker)
In the spring of this year, we asked Alberta artists to submit their most thoughtful and creative proposals for 3 public art sites cSPACE King Edward: the Grand Historic Entranceway (site 1), the Contemporary Main Entrance (site 2) and the Art Park (site 3).
This week we’ll be sharing DDM Connective’s proposal for the Art Park site and Alexandra Haeseker’s proposal for the Grand Historic Entranceway.
Don’t forget to stay tuned to the blog in the coming weeks for sneak peeks at each of the 10 finalist proposals as well some fun Q&As to help you get to know the creative geniuses behind the concepts! We’ll be announcing the winner proposals in the coming weeks so make sure you follow cSPACE King Edward on Facebook so you don’t miss a thing.
Meet DDM Connective
DDM Connective is a new collaboration between artists Melissa McKinnon (contemporary Canadian Landscape painter), Dave MacLeod (designer and fabricator) and Dawn VandeSchoot (performing artist and project manager). This team’s unique multidisciplinary perspective, encompassing design and fabrication through to performance and community engagement, was what caught the jury’s attention during the short-listing process.
Art Park: Abridged
Words matter, our history matters — DDM Connective want to illustrate this through an installation at the Art Park which would nourish both. Melissa McKinnon, Dave MacLeod and Dawn VandeSchoot (DDM Connective) are shortlisted for their fauna-inspired exhibit, “Abridged”, a large-scale conceptual tree, representing the history of the school, as well as the significant cultural impact the King Edward sandstone structure has had on #YYC.
“Abridged” is inspired by the Poplar tree — indigenous to the King Edward School site’s area. Made from marine-grade plywood and stainless steel, this durable exterior artwork would add dimension and interest to the outside gathering space at the west side of the site.
Stories collected from the history of building over the past century would be etched into the tree’s exposed “rings”. Did you know that the rings of a tree trunk tell its age? To pay homage to the King Edward’s 105-year legacy, Abridged would include 100-some layers of rings and leaves, representing the beautiful sandstone school’s century of life.
While DDM Connective’s ‘Abridged’ aims to connect cSPACE King Edward to historical flora, ‘HIVE’ proposed by Alexandra Haeseker, would connect the arts hub to fauna.
Meet Alexandra Haeseker
Calgary-based artist Alexandra ‘Sandy’ Haeseker knows the halls of King Edward intimately, she was a student at the school and can draw on past childhood memory to find inspiration.
The internationally-shown Canadian artist works largely in print media. You may have seen Haeseker’s West Ride Story at the Calgary International Airport. The past decade of her studio exploration has been dedicated to exploring swarm theory, collective consciousness and morphic-field-theory. The jury noted Haeseker’s bright, vibrant, and colourful work and use of LED lenticular technology.
Grand Historic Entranceway: HIVE
If chosen as one of three public art pieces for the King Edward site, HIVE would grace the Grand Historic Entranceway. Haeseker explains that transforming the main foyer of the school into a buzzing art exhibit would require: a combination of “Giant sketches, erasure, furtive attempts, diagram studies of bee anatomy, lessons in flight, the bounty of flowers (referencing the garden landscape directly out the door), and a cacophony of motion with the activity of bees to animate and excite the space into an experience transition of scale that one moves through.”
The vestibule would represent a blackboard (a learning ground) where notes, scribbles and all sorts of equations, problems and mysteries of the world and childhood could be explored. This historic chalk-on-blackboard imagery paralleled with Haeseker’s high-tech production imaging, techniques and artist materials would merge history, present and future. She plans to engage school children of various ages to draw their version of a bee for inclusion in the piece as well.
Haeseker’s proposal is an exciting mix of mediums that would unite the King Edward’s past contributions to Calgary with visions of what the new cSPACE arts hub will bring to #YYCarts future.