A Fleeting Glimpse of Colour

Art Students Bring Their Practice Outdoors

There has been an abundance of events occurring within Concordia’s artistic sphere over the past two weeks with the kick-off of the Fine Arts Student Alliance’s Lecture Series, I Would Like To Answer Your Question But The Truth Is I Just Don’t Know. The series explores the extremely broad topic of space in all its manifestations.

The momentum of the arts community at Concordia ceases to stop, with Art Matters a mere month away and the next few weeks being littered with panel discussions and explorations into public art.
FLEET is another FASA initiative. The event will sprinkle public art installations around the downtown campus in the hope of tickling our brains with questions about space.
The one catch to the event? It’s happening outside.

“We, at FASA, really wanted to see some of the questions raised in the lectures [we’ve been hosting] put into practice,” said Amy Ball, FASA special events coordinator and organizer of FLEET.

“I approached Donna Akrey’s ARTX 280 class, a multidisciplinary studio course, with the opportunity to devote some of their semester to working through these questions, and to develop a project out of them. After that initial conversation, it was up to them, and then FLEET was born,” she said.

There is an emphasis on the event being purely a student-actualized collaboration. The students have been actively involved in planning, creating and on Wednesday, implementing these art works into the public sphere.

“We are hoping that people on the SGW campus who are running to and from classes, running to get the bus, running to catch the copy centre before it closes or return the overdue library book might catch a fleeting glimpse of colour,” said Ball. “Not from corporate advertising but from a series of micro-interventions marked by coloured flags.”

Passersby are invited to witness and partake in the performances, installations, and all the multi-disciplinary works that will manifest around our urban campus, which will be indicated by vibrant markers.

“We are hoping the event will highlight overlooked sites and foster engagement,” said Ball. “There will be a walking tour of the event starting outside the FOFA gallery starting at 6 p.m. Mostly we would like to animate and create points of interest, discovery, intimacy and thought in an otherwise rather mundane [context].”

The intent of FLEET is to offer a platform for spectators to respond and interact with public space that, on ordinary days, would be passed by unnoticed.

Ball shared some questions and concerns that arose amongst students during the planning of the event. Questions such as, “How do we create or adapt work for the outdoors? Why outdoors? This is not necessarily a gallery-going audience, so how do we deal with that? Do we want people to interact in our works? How do we facilitate that? Is the work potentially dangerous? How do we make it public friendly?”

“We hope people will have a walk around and take a minute or two to see [our campus] in a different way and think about public art,” she said. “Think about what you like in the city. What you don’t like. Think about your city.”

FLEET is on Feb. 2 from 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. The
map of installations can be found online or in the fofa atrium.

This article originally appeared in Volume 31, Issue 21, published February 1, 2011.