About EMMA Talks
EMMA is a Mini-Art Festival and Speakers Series that ran from 2015-2018, and is currently on hiatus.
The core purpose of EMMA talks is to bring important stories by women and gender diverse writers, activists, thinkers, storytellers, makers and doers, from the periphery to the public.
Together their stories built a powerful and engaging collection of talks, celebrating and building on the conversations, imaginings, and hard work of so many individuals, communities and movements, which lead to a creative cross-pollination of ideas.
EMMA was co-dreamed by carla bergman and Corin Browne, and to date, one of our most beloved projects!
HOW IS IT ABOUT MUTUAL AID?
Each event collected donations, which were divided in two:
a. 50% of donations at the door went to the speaker’s choice of cause/project/individuals
b. 50% paid all the tech and support staff
Speakers were paid by partnering institutions and grants
We produced terrific, high-quality video shorts of each EMMA talk for our website so that folks can share widely, and thus amplify the speakers’ voices and ideas.
MORE ABOUT THE TALKS
Community Engaged Art
At EMMA Talks we are really interested in the ways in which an intentionally curated community based art event could actively transform conventional audience/speaker dynamics by enabling different kinds of engagement. And we’re really interested in exploring the possibilities of collaborative art-making as a community response to important issues and ideas.
With support from the BC Arts Council, the City of Vancouver Cultural Services, and the BC Multiculturalism Grant program, we were able to commission community-engaged artists from diverse mediums to produce a collaborative art event that explores the themes of each talk.
We acknowledge that the strongest community-engaged art projects are sustained, long term projects that allow relationships to build over time. We hope to inspire this type of engagement to embolden the audience’s overall experiences as well as aim to build a stronger and vibrant community surrounding the Talks over time.
We have held many amazing Community Engaged Art events along side our talks:
The Thoughtful Photo Booth by community engaged artists: Sylvia McFadden and Vivienne McMaster
Vanessa Richards led the audience in participatory song before and after Rebecca Solnit’s talk. (read more about this night)
Tin Can Studio created an art engagement called Common Threads — which explored ‘connection; through the metaphor of thread through this participatory activity.
We have been working this past year with Tin Can Studio as our artists in residence. see below for more details on the first two.
“Playing Post-colonial – A Decolonizing Activity Book for the Woke and Weary,” which also included a giant size Sinulkay & Ladders board game! Design by Ta7talíya Michelle Nahanee with Art by Paisley Nahanee. This is for Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Matriarchs event, Curated by Michelle Nahanee.