Check out our latest series Covid Visions by poet and arts writer Steven Ross Smith. Each story highlights Saskatchewan artists or arts organizations facing the strange reality of Covid-19.
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Covid Visions: Conclusion
- Part One: The Pandemic ShadowBefore 2020, and despite the precarities of the artistic life— creative, economic, personal, and emotional—that were accepted as normal—creators made and presented art, as they’ve been doing year upon year for centuries. That was once upon. The now of the more than two-year-old pandemic has been—to understate—different.
That was once upon. The now of the more than two-year-old pandemic has been—to understate—different.
- Part Two: Agencies do the Covid JigDepending on the frame of view, there are four ‘primary’ provincial funding agencies — perhaps we should call them investment agencies — for Saskatchewan artists and arts organizations: The Government of Saskatchewan, SKArts, SaskCulture, and Creative Saskatchewan. As with artists, these agencies too have been affected by two-plus years living with and responding to COVID and its variants.
Covid Visions: Part 2
Poet and arts writer Steven Ross Smith offers a glimpse of the COVID-19 impact on the arts in Saskatchewan and how arts organizations are emerging.
- Pandemic Chill; Presented ThrillsInto the pandemic’s second year, three Saskatchewan entities have coped, shifted, and renewed, but operate still in an uncertain field, with flexible planning, new platforms, and a tentative dash of hope.
- Together, In and Out of IsolationCould the artistic forms – reggae and beading – be farther apart in terms of aesthetic, method, and presentation? My conversations with two creative makers this July, as Covid restrictions eased, revealed diversities and similarities across generations and modes of expression.
- Making Art; Making Good CommunityArtists are, by nature and necessity, multi-taskers—making, administering, and most often juggling part-time or even full-time jobs. And it is not unusual for some artists to work in more than one artistic discipline. I talked to three creators who are all multi-disciplinary and collaborative.
- Pivoting Amidst Pandemic WavesWistful we may be, for days gone by, while pivot, rethink, innovate, imagine, and hope are words more often heard in the new realities. Such words are not unfamiliar to artists and have been injected into the practices of organizations like Eastend Arts Council and Saskatchewan Festival of Words, and all those working together in the realm of creative making and presentation.
Covid Visions: Part 1
- Covid Visions - Isolation in Country & TownOur first story, Isolation in Country & Town features Painter Laureen Marchand and Writer/Curator Paul Seesequasis. “Disorientation, isolated days, wider distances, tighter belts, slower pace. Artists are adjusting and carrying on creating, while waiting for the new, though unpredictable, ‘normal’.”
- Covid Visions - Amping Down the VenuesOur second story, Amping Down the Venues features the Ness Creek Music Festival and the Regina Folk Festival. “Cancellations of Saskatchewan music festivals include, to name a few more, those in Weyburn, Swift Current, Outlook, and Saskatoon’s Saskatchewan Jazz Festival, thereby terminating musicians’ summer touring and performing plans and incomes. At least one hundred and fifty musicians applied to SaskMusic’s Emergency Relief Fund in recent months.”
- Covid Visions - ShowbizCheck out the third story, Showbiz featuring Gordon Tootoosis Nīkānīwin Theatre, Little Manitou Art Gallery, Yorkton Film Festival, and artist Amberlin Hsu. “Amidst a strange soup of uncertainty, worry, cautious adaptation, and hope, presenters peer ahead, strengthen networks, reimagine programs, and carry on creatively.”
- Covid Visions - Cue SheetRead our fourth and final story, Cue Sheet featuring Mario LePage, Johanna Bundon, and Donny Parenteau. “These are emotional, unnerving, challenging days for artists in all disciplines.”