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Canadian Urbanism Uncovered

Events Guide: The Gatekeeper’s Lodge – Open Projects Initiative

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HALIFAX, NS – As part of HRM’s Open Projects initiative, artist Aimée Brown will be activating Point Pleasant Park through her project – The Gatekeeper’s Lodge – over the next few months through in-park performances, outdoor installations and printed matter projects. As a location that has survived extreme weather phenomena [Hurricane Juan], Point Pleasant Park is an ideal microcosm for wilderness survival practice. Aimée Brown’s works will be presented as publicly accessible installations, performances, and open studio sessions at the Park Lodge, at intervals throughout the project’s duration. Some of the performances will take place without prior publicity, accepting the park’s regular users as audience, whereas other performances will be advertised and promoted in advance, inviting new user groups to the park who may not feel an immediate sense of ownership or normally identify with this public space, bringing a new public to the park.

In relation to the above image and information captured from The GateKeeper’s Lodge blog, Browns’ initial series of research explorations are based on what could have been the burbs of Point Pleasant Park:

The most SHOCKING part of Dr. Frederick A. Schwarz for Black Spruce Heritage Services report was discovering a map of Point Pleasant Park divided into parcels of land. It is also interesting to note that most of the parcel owners’ last names are now common street names in Halifax and Dartmouth. This rendering references plots of land from the 19th century: “It was anticipated that features relating to early military activities might be encountered, but the real surprise was the amount of evidence bearing on early civilian settlement. Point Pleasant Park includes some of the most exciting, unique and extensive remains of early British suburban settlement still surviving on the Halifax peninsula. Areas of inferred early settlement include the Green Field area, the woods south and west of the Lodge, and possibly the slopes behind North West Arm Battery.”

Follow Aimée as she chronicles her research, project development and be in the know when she posts pertinent information regarding public performances and events associated with the project through The Gatekeeper’s Lodge blog.

WHAT: The Gatekeeper’s Lodge, Open Projects Initiative
WHEN: Now till May-ish
WHERE: Park Lodge, Point Pleasant Park (5718 Point Pleasant Drive)
CONTACT: Jamie MacLellan, Cultural Affairs, Halifax Regional Municipality, (902) 490 – 1039.

Open Projects is an annual initiative that solicits artist-led public realm proposals for site-specific work. This program is aimed at encouraging artists to assess the physical, conceptual and contextual opportunities of their environments and to propose work that responds specifically to those opportunities through critical, aesthetic, formal and other means. A call for submissions for Open Projects 2011 will be released in February.

Photo care of Aimee Brown’s blog.