Art Place 2015

Emerging from a tranquil escape


Blog Post 5 – May 18, 2016 by Kat Clarida

Odawa Native Friendship Centre

Mamidosewin Aboriginal Student Centre, Algonquin College

‘Tis a whirlwind project for sure and we are now all accredited to herd cats, leap mountainous technical issues and fly by the seat of our pants as we all work to complete the Your Brain on Art collaboration.

To keep our group connected we have gone virtual with each of us working on a segment of the video documentation of the collaboration for our final exhibition.

At the end of March the collaboration culminated in a three day social art experiment that provided a visceral experience for the community of Algonquin College allowing people to witness the impacts of stress on their lives.

The youth designed their poster…..Art for Social Change Poster

….recorded and edited a meditation….

….transformed a private room into a forest setting….

….laid out the art materials and invited students and staff to the experience.

Each participant was invited to put their current feeling into a ‘before’ mandala drawing… DSCN6736

….then they were immersed in the private forest setting complete with pine essential oil spray, headphones and a comfy leather strewn couch as they closed their eyes and listened to the meditation.

Upon emerging from this tranquil escape they put their current feeling on an ‘after’ mandala.  The transformation was amazing; in their art, in their demeanor and most importantly in their stress level.


The youth recorded interviews with students and staff and asked them to describe their experience of the art, the meditation, and how they felt before and after.

The three days of video, stills and art was contained in three video and still cameras.  Our challenge, certainly technically, was how to have our now virtual group edit the video and plan for a final exhibition.  Thankfully we think we have all the bugs worked out, all footage collected and shared and the editing of the video is under way.  If all goes according to the latest Plan ‘C’ our exhibition will be held the last week of May. Check the Art Place Facebook page for updates on the exhibition! It is a whirlwind for sure, but not one that anyone of us would have missed.

Thanks for sharing / Merci d’avoir partagé!

About The Author / À propos de l’auteur

Kat Clarida

Kat Clarida

For more than 30 years I have been most fortunate to work as an Artist, Consultant, Trainer and Producer for many cutting edge grass-roots communication for social change projects with diverse cultures from across Canada, primarily in the four Inuit land claim territories. Through the exploration of issues using all art modalities, I provide a safe place for people to explore their inner worlds and then proudly voice their world through art.

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