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Ottawa's Latest and Greatest on Learning

(Re)Discover the fascinating world of art history

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Detail from The Burial of the Count of Orgaz, by El Greco, 1586.Detail from The Burial of the Count of Orgaz, by El Greco, 1586.

The National Gallery is always abuzz with events, though few locals take advantage of all they have on offer. For Ottawans, it is often a venue for a harmless second date on free Thursday evenings, where you’ll catch a kiss in the quiet chapel and then sneak up to Champlain Point to continue the courting, not that I would know anything about that. It also hosts posh fundraisers and high-end weddings, which only some people are lucky enough to get an invite to. However, if you want to take in... | Continue reading article

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Art and politics converge at the People’s Social Forum

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All photos by Lisa Levesque.All photos by Lisa Levesque.

On Tuesday April 8th at Gallery 101, the People’s Social Forum held its official Ottawa launch. To celebrate the budding activist movement, the event featured a potluck, social justice speakers, slam poetry, and local musicians, all in the context of the gallery’s exhibit of international art. The People’s Social Forum bills itself as an attempt to assemble together left-leaning activists for the sake of dialogue and unity. Environmental, indigenous, feminist, student, worker, and youth – they’re all a part of this political movement. The launch served as a rally for... | Continue reading article

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PechaKucha inspires in 6 minutes and 40 seconds

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Photo from pechakucha.org.Photo from pechakucha.org.

For anyone looking to get inspired to take on new projects now that it’s finally time to come out of hibernation, an upcoming event will bring together a wide array of local artists, organizers, and entrepreneurs to tell us about their work. PechaKucha (“chit-chat” in Japanese) nights were created in Tokyo in 2003 as a way for young creative professionals to meet and share ideas.  Each speaker shows 20 slides for 20 seconds each, and speaks over them, keeping their presentations to an MTV-generation-friendly six minutes and forty seconds each. ... | Continue reading article

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Experiences from Hub Ottawa’s Impact Academy: Expertise and Peer Support

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Photo courtesy of Tabatha Soltay.Photo courtesy of Tabatha Soltay.

Hub Ottawa is much more than a space. It offers an inspiring work environment, diverse community, and a focus on collaboration, peer learning, and member engagement. Hub is currently recruiting its 3rd cohort of Impact Academy, a program that offers targeted skills development for entrepreneurs, nonprofits, and professionals interested in learning practical tools for change. Participants choose a particular project to work on from inception all the way to making it happen. To get a flavour for what the program was all about, I chatted with Tabatha Soltay, Impact Academy alum... | Continue reading article

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Celebrate the late Dennis Tourbin with ABCDelevision at Club SAW

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Screen shot of Dennis Tourbin, Canadian poet and painter reading Bay Street Ottawa as part of the Festival Of The Arts presentation Inset: The Visual Poets.Screen shot of Dennis Tourbin, Canadian poet and painter reading Bay Street Ottawa as part of the Festival Of The Arts presentation Inset: The Visual Poets.

The name says it all: ABCDelevision. Rather, to be clear, the written word doesn’t say it all-but absolutely that’s the point. ABCDelevision is actually pronounced “Abracadelevision” and it was a term Dennis Tourbin coined to describe the ‘magic’ of television: an ‘instant’ medium which beamed with unprecedented immediacy and simultaneity images and words, a message, directly into our homes. Fascinated by the power of different mediums to transform language and having dedicated his art to “an exploration of the complex visual dimensions contained within language” it’s unsurprising that his single... | Continue reading article

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Best of: Meditation workshops in Ottawa

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Photo by émiliep on Flickr. All other photos are by Jason Yung, unless otherwise specified.Photo by émiliep on Flickr. All other photos are by Jason Yung, unless otherwise specified.

The art of meditation is a way of getting into touch with reality. The reason for it is that most civilized people are out of touch with reality – because they confuse the world as it is, with the world as they think about it, talk about it, and describe it. -Alan Watts So you’ve decided to try out meditation. Perhaps you’ve just suffered a personal crisis and you need to find some calm. Perhaps you’ve heard about the health benefits. Or maybe you’re just plain curious – for whatever... | Continue reading article

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Streetscape Memory Bank: The Ottawa Leather Goods Company

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Exterior of the third Ottawa Leather Goods store located at 131 Sparks Street, 1948. All photos provided by The Ottawa Leather Goods Co.Exterior of the third Ottawa Leather Goods store located at 131 Sparks Street, 1948. All photos provided by The Ottawa Leather Goods Co.

“The store of 1001 gifts”. By 1938, this was the slogan George Wolf used for Ottawa Leather Goods, a store that sold luggage, handbags, and tourist novelty items on Sparks Street. At the height of the Great Depression in 1931, Wolf made a daring decision: he would move his ten year old business from 92 Bank Street in the Capitol Theatre Building to the former Home Bank building at 126 Sparks, next to what would be the Hardy Arcade. And thus began what is now an 83 year connection to... | Continue reading article

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Get your geek on this weekend at the Wonder Geeks Activate anniversary party

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Members of Wonder Geeks Activate at FanExpo 2013. Photo from wondergeeksactivate.com.Members of Wonder Geeks Activate at FanExpo 2013. Photo from wondergeeksactivate.com.

They’re everywhere. Learning in our universities, working in our restaurants and bars: some of them have even infiltrated the government and are working on the Hill. You’ve probably passed them in the streets, brushed up against them on the bus, and even shared the intimate confines of an elevator with them. All the while never guessing that beneath their veneer of normalcy lays a secret self… It’s true. Geeks live among us! They come from all walks of life and there are as many different types of geek as there... | Continue reading article

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Canadian Museum of Nature tackles leading-edge science with new interactive series

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Dr. Kamal Khidas. Photo by Mark Lipman. Copyright: Canadian Museum of Nature. Dr. Kamal Khidas. Photo by Mark Lipman. Copyright: Canadian Museum of Nature.

The pilot season of NatureTalks began last month, and continues until April. Now let’s get one thing straight: this is not a lecture series. “There are a lot of similar programs available in Ottawa, with it being a government and university town,” says program coordinator Cynthia Iburg. “We wanted to shake up the idea of a traditional lecture.” Iburg came up with the idea for the series by looking at TED Talks and the international Cafe scientifique movement. TED Talks helps make information about science and technology accessible online, while the... | Continue reading article

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Meet a Gaffer: How a movie theatre job led to a career in film

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All photos provided by Jon Olts.All photos provided by Jon Olts.

When I was 10, my father and I rented Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade on VHS. After the film ended, my father insisted we watch the credits. “A lot of people put a lot of work into this,” he said. Ever since that day, whenever I go to a movie, I stay until the end of the credits. And ever since that day, I’ve seen terms like, “gaffer” and “best boy” to describe members of the crew. I’ve always wondered what these people do. If you’d been wondering, too,... | Continue reading article

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