July/August 2013 cover

In this issue we hear from committed artists in their own words. Sundus Abdul Hadi discusses art and identity in the context of the Iraq War and Arab diaspora. Justseeds artists reflect on the role of collectivity, empathy, and method in political art. Christi Belcourt offers a personal essay on the colonial dynamics of naming in Canada. Laura Stewart opens us to the wonders of a devalorized ecosystem. And Randy Lundy publishes a new poem, “Son,” certain to be anthologized for years to come. In the Parting Shot, art historian Daniel Spaulding asks what is to be done about the state of art within 21st-century capitalism.

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  • Magazine

    Letter from the editor

    The primacy of place and, more pointedly, an essential relation to the land is largely absent from the aesthetic theories of those in the modernist and Marxist traditions. In a settler-colonial society, such abstract sensibilities are untenable.

  • Magazine

    Art and identity

    Montreal-based Iraqi-Canadian artist Sundus Abdul Hadi discusses art and identity in the context of the Iraq War and Arab diaspora.

  • Magazine

    Reclaiming ourselves by name

    The renaming of lakes, rivers, lands, peoples, and individuals by the Canadian settler state can be challenged.

  • Magazine

    A voice for the grasslands

    Grasslands ecosystems are under threat globally. With less than 20 per cent of Saskatchewan’s prairie lands remaining, the provincial and federal governments are attempting to privatize the public pastures established in the 1930s by the Prairie Farm Rehabilitation Administration (PFRA). Ex-oil-industry contractor and inveterate grasslands lover Laura Stewart is our personal guide through a vibrant ecosystem, revealing the global, and colonial, stakes of grasslands health – and the growing movement rising to its defence.

  • Magazine

    Printmaking radicalism

    Justseeds Artists’ Cooperative is a continental network of artists committed to making print and design that reflects, builds, and sustains the aspirations of radical social movements. With two dozen artists from the U.S., Canada, and Mexico, Justseeds is a worker-owned co-op where the sensibilities of individual artists coalesce in shared objectives.

    Justseeds artists produce collective portfolios, contribute graphics to grassroots struggles, work collaboratively both in and out of the co-op, build large installations in galleries, and wheat-paste in the streets – all while offering each other daily support as allies and friends. Justseeds artists Erik Ruin and Meredith Stern spoke with Briarpatch about aesthetics and politics, empathy and influence.

  • Magazine

    Claypicken mojo and mixed identities

    A complexly layered urban fantasy, Sister Mine explores the space between the spiritual and material, and the murky pool where these worlds bleed together.

  • Magazine

    Mature thrash

    Winnipeg punks Propagandhi reach the musical goal they’ve been headed for since the ’80s but only now have the chops to realize: blistering progressive thrash metal.

  • Magazine

    The marriage of heaven and hell

    The rich today have no culture worthy of the name: they can only poach from creative forces below them.