On August 10th, after a temporary five-month closure, Indefinite Arts Centre reopened our doors to IAC artists by offering a three-week workshop facilitated by Calgary Artist Teresa Tam.
Our workshop asked a simple but powerful question: if you could step inside an alternative reality that understands you better, what kind of a world would you create? Over three studio sessions, artists were asked to explore ways of combing drawing, painting, backdrops, green screens, and digital photography to reimagine, design, and superimpose ourselves into new and alternative worlds.
Whether overtly political or simply playful, these imagined realities represent the sentiment that if we want to change the future, it’s easier to do so before it happens. Reimaging our surroundings goes hand in hand with reimagining ourselves, and new stories and new narratives make up the powerful magic to help us do that.
Meg Ohsada, Russian Blue Dream (2020), 12” X 18”, Digital Photo
It is my dream to win the gold medal in the 2022 Special Olympics World Winter Games in Russia. It would be such a fantastic experience. I am still training, and I’m still waiting to hear if I’ve qualified!
For this picture, I’ve decided to wear the same outfit that I wore in my solo performance at Rock the Rink in Red Deer, Alberta. My routine was choreographed to the song “This Is Me” from the movie The Greatest Showman. This was a special event because I got to skate alongside some of my biggest idols like Tess Virtue, Scott Moir, and Patrick Chan.
It was inspiring to imagine myself winning gold in Russia, and I was ecstatic to see myself inside my drawing! I’ll be using this as inspiration to work hard and make it to Russia in 2022.
Angie Tremblay, Fishing in the Rockies (2020), 12” X 18”, Digital Photography
For my imagined reality, I’m in the BC Rockies relaxing and fishing. Going on trips hasn’t been much of an option for me this year! Clearly, I caught the big one, and it was such a massive catch that I climbed on to ride it! I was so happy riding the fish, and I knew I had to protect it from this giant bird trying to snatch him up. It’s a bizarre reality, and I’m fairly sure all the other animals thought I was crazy!
Kathy Austin, Psycho Cyclist (2020), 12” X 18”, Digital Photo
For whatever reason, I’ve always loved Skeletons – the imagery, the idea, and all the rest. If I could be a skeleton and still be conscious and alive, that would be an amazing experience. I’ve also never ridden a bike. Well, I have, but not to very much success. I’m clinically blind, and my balance isn’t quite what it needs to be for bike riding, but there’s always been something appealing about moving that fast through the air.
I bought a trike in college, but I was too reckless. I guess you could say that I was the Psycho Cyclist. I would always ride too fast, get into accidents, and have too many close calls.
In this piece, I’m riding through birch trees in Northern Minnesota. You may wonder about the red hair. That comes from a doll I had as a child, with wild red hair and big ol’ green eyes. I’ve always loved how big and crazy it was
I know that it looks like Fall, but I’m not really a fan of the fall in all honesty. I love the colours, though, and Halloween is my favorite holiday!
Leonka Kaluha, Empowering Dream (2020), 12” X 18”, Digital Photography
Stopping bullying is very important to me. It doesn’t make anyone feel good, and it’s a very negative force in the world. If I had my way, everyone would feel great about being themselves – in any way they want! The unicorn makes me feel happy, free, and magical, and prepares me to take on the world. The watermelon cape gives me strength. They help me to be more of who I want to be.
Gwyn Howell, Rocking with Prince! (2020), 12” X 18”, Digital Photography
In my limitless reality, I’m hanging out with my all-time favourite musician, Prince! I love Prince, and I would do anything to be part of his band. In this picture, I’m playing my air guitar alongside Prince’s band in Purple Rain. I’ve included Prince in a lot of my work, and to see him live would have been such a magical experience!
Amber Lynn, Lucy’s Almost There (2020), 12” X 18”, Digital Photography
My new reality encompasses everything I love in life – animals, travel, the outdoors, music, love, and family. It’s inspired in part by the definition of aloha, which is basically the Hawaiian word for love, affection, peace, compassion, and mercy. It’s usually just a simple greeting, but it has a more profound cultural and spiritual significance. My understanding is that aloha can also be interpreted as a force that holds a reality together. I want that force to bring together my reality! The entire composition is based on the Beatles song, Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds.
It’s also a continuation of my work around the lady with the Red Balloon, which symbolizes true friendship, innocence, and magic in the world!