Exhibitions

Unbelievable

Saturday, June 24, 2017 to Sunday, December 3, 2017

On the occasion of Canada's 150th anniversary, we're diving deep into our vault and showcasing some of Vancouver's most valuable treasures to present our newest exhibition Unbelievable, in collaboration with HCMA Architecture + Design. Unbelievable features contested objects, storied replicas and iconic artefacts for a mind-bending exploration of the role stories play in defining community – and what happens when these tales can't be relied upon.  

 

We currently live in a post-truth world full of fake news, alternative facts and falsehoods, where literally nothing can be taken at face value. In Unbelievable, we will look at the contradictory and unbelievable stories behind treasured artifacts challenging visitors to look differently at the world and facts. 

August 17, 2017 / 7:00 PM
Talk and Tour: Unbelievable Stories!

Join us for an evening of hard to believe Vancouver stories. Local historians John Atkin, Rob Howatson and Mike Harling present Vancouver narratives which on the surface appear too strange to be true, except that they are! 

One of the more curious Vancouver stories yet to be embraced by the mainstream media is the tale of country music star Loretta Lynn being discovered in a Fraserview chicken coop in 1959. Writers Rob Howatson and Mike Harling examine the unlikely Canadians who helped the Coal Miner’s Daughter achieve her American Dream. Did the Queen of Country suppress the truth about her own origin story or did the Vancouver record executive who produced Loretta’s first hit embellish his star-maker role? The facts are between the tracks in this bizarre musical odyssey.

The high density 1950s development of Vancouver’s West End neighborhood is commonly thought to be rezoned due to a housing shortage. Historian John Atkin disproves this notion by linking West End development to the 1929 amalgamation of the three municipalities that make up today’s Vancouver and the preservation of green space. In what ought to be filed in “the hard to believe” category, building height increased not because of developer pressure, but rather in an effort to preserve more green space.

South Van Twang meets West End Pangs in a single, fun packed evening of history, stories, images and musical interludes.  

Date: Thursday, August 17, 2017

Time: 7:00pm

Admission: Advance tickets (Until August 10):  *Adults: $15; Seniors, Students: $13; MOV Members Free.

After August 10: *Adults: $17; Seniors, Students: $15; MOV Members Free. 

Registration

Gallery admission included with event ticket. Come early and explore.

* Online Tickets Sales will end ONE HOUR before the event begins. Remaining tickets on sale at the door / Visitor Services at the time of event.


 

Bios:

John Atkin is a civic historian, author, walking tour guide and heritage consultant who brings an insight of urban planning and development, a love of architecture, and the fascination of the curious to his work. He has published five books about Vancouver, two co-authored with Michael Kluckner. His most recent publication is Changing City [2010] written with Andy Coupland. As a consultant, John has written the Chinatown Lighting Strategy for the City of Vancouver [2008], the City of Vancouver’s successful nominations for the Lee Kuan Yee World City Prize [2011] and the Guangzhou International Award for Urban Innovation [2012], John co-authored, with Jeannette Hlavach, the successful 2010 application for Chinatown's National Historic District status. He is the chair of the Chinese Canadian Historical Society of  BC and is on the board of the Dr Sun Yat Sen Chinese Classical Garden. He sits as a member of the City’s Civic Assets Naming Committee. His on going research project is the exploration of the persistent myth of Chinatown tunnels in North America. http://www.johnatkin.com/

Mike Harling has contributed to the Georgia Straight, Vancouver Courier and the Globe and Mail. He has also authored three books, including Rock 'n' Roll Trivia. Along with Rob Howatson, he created honkytonkgirl.ca to shed light on the Canadian chapter of Loretta Lynn's career.

Rob Howatson is a freelance writer who has contributed entertainment, travel and business articles to a variety of publications, including the Globe and Mail, the Vancouver Courier, Vancouver magazine, BCBusiness and Westworld. Rob also writes about local history and once helped the Vancouver Park Board locate a 1950 time capsule that had gone missing in the walls of the old Sunset Community Centre (spoiler alert: the canister contained rare footage of Bing Crosby).


 

MOV's Unbelievable exhibiiton features contested objects, storied replicas and iconic artifacts for a mind-bending exploration of the role stories play in defining community – and what happens when these tales can't be relied upon.

September 14, 2017 / 7:00 PM
E. Pauline Johnson: Texts and Stories

 

Join Carole Gerson and Alix Shield for an intimate look at Canadian poet, performer and controversial figure, E. Pauline Johnson (1861-1913). The changing reception of E. Pauline Johnson exemplifies how the construction of cultural reputation is an ever-changing and ongoing process. 

Johnson’s first admirers valued her publications and recitations because they enabled Euro-Canadians to feel at home in the places to which they or their families had immigrated by giving them Aboriginal materials that bolstered their desire for a sense of belonging. Alternatively, many critics today see Johnson as a figure of resistance. Dr. Carole Gerson will discuss this shift by looking closely at the packaging and design of several of her first books, and at the content of some of her most outspoken poems.
 
In the collaboratively-authored text Legends of Vancouver (1911), Mohawk writer E. Pauline Johnson (Tekahionwake) composes a series of Coast Salish legends based on the oral stories of Squamish Chief Joe Capilano (Sahp-luk) and his wife Mary Capilano (Lixwelut). These stories first appeared in periodicals such as Boys World and Mother’s Magazine (1909-1911), before undergoing significant revision for the weekend edition of the Vancouver newspaper The Daily Province (1910-1911). 
 
Considered a classic of Vancouver literature, and in publication for 100 years, no edition of Legends of Vancouver has yet to include sufficient biographical information for or images of Chief Joe or Mary Capilano. Instead, the original 1911 book and each subsequent edition uses the space of the “paratext”, or critical framework, to highlight the life and contributions of E. Pauline Johnson exclusively, positioning her as the sole author. 
 
Doctoral candidate Alix Shield will trace the evolution of the Legends of Vancouver text over the past century by examining the changes made across different editions, and will argue for an updated critical edition of Legends that properly acknowledges the contributions of the Capilano family.
 
A series of original publications and slide images will accompany the presentations. This event promises to be a thought provoking evening as we revisit Johnsons' works and her challenging place within Vancouver’s literary and cultural history.
 
Date: Thursday, September 14, 2017
 
Time: 7pm
 
Admission: *Adults: $19; Seniors and Students: $15; MOV Members and individuals who self identify as First Nations: Free.
 
 
Gallery admission included with event ticket. Come early and explore.
 
MOV membership grants free admission to this and other Talk and Tour events. Members are encouraged to register for events to guarantee a seat.  
 
* Online Tickets Sales will end ONE HOUR before the event begins. Remaining tickets on sale at the door / Visitor Services at the time of event.
 

 
Bios
 

Dr. Carole Gerson is a member of the English department at Simon Fraser University where she holds the position of University Professor, and is a fellow of the Royal Society of Canada. Co-editor of volume 3 (1918-1980) of History of the Book in Canada / Histoire du livre et de l’imprimé au Canada, she has published extensively on Canada’s literary and cultural history with a focus on women writers, including L.M. Montgomery and Susanna Moodie. In collaboration with historian Veronica Strong-Boag, she issued two volumes on Pauline Johnson: a critical study that received the Klibansky Award in 2001, followed by a complete edition of Johnson’s poetry. In 2011, Gerson’s book, Canadian Women in Print, 1750-1918, won the Gabrielle Roy Prize for Canadian criticism. In 2013 she received the Marie Tremaine medal from the Bibliographical Society of Canada.

Alix Shield is a PhD student in the Department of English at Simon Fraser University (Burnaby, BC). Her research uses contemporary digital humanities methods to analyze collaboratively-authored twentieth- and twenty-first-century Indigenous literatures in Canada, and is primarily focused on E. Pauline Johnson's 1911 text Legends of Vancouver.  Alix is the recipient of a SSHRC Joseph-Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Scholarship for her doctoral work (2016-19).

 

 

MOV's Unbelievable exhibition features contested objects, storied replicas and iconic artifacts for a mind-bending exploration of the role stories play in defining community – and what happens when these tales can't be relied upon.

 
 

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