Who gets to name themselves an artist? Who gets to access art and in what spaces? Does everyone have an artistic voice? This public conversation considers the privilege of artistic creation and consumption. How can art become a vehicle for individual emancipation? Do venues mandated to showcase have a responsibility to situation themselves in relation to a social change narrative? How are communities transformed by artistic creation?
Maher Kouraytem is an autodidact artist based in Montreal (Tiohtiàke), born in Beirut (Berith). His motto is: anyone can Fart, anyone can do Art. In his recent work, he uses maps, stamps, found objects, and drawings to create paintings and three-dimensional sculptures which depict hybrid creatures that highlight oddities and curiosities. Maher is currently studying community engagement at Université de Montréal. In his free time, he enjoys visiting thrift shops, eco-centers, and garage sales to collect discarded treasures.
Shane Watt is a music composer, producer and contemporary artist best known for his semi-fictitious, map drawings and paintings. He has exhibited internationally and his work has been featured in a number of online and print books and media. His work is focused within deconstructionism and anti foundational thought and these themes run throughout his work including mapmaking/mural workshops, a series of radio podcasts and his musical endeavours .
Véro Leduc is an artist and engaged scholar as well as a professor in the Programme d'action culturelle at the Département de communication sociale et publique of UQAM | Université du Québec à Montréal. Holding a Ph.D in Communication and a MA in Social Work, she is the first Deaf university professor in Quebec. Her projects and practices are anchored in research-creation and critical, feminist, queer, intersectional, crip and Deaf perspectives.
Emma Haraké is a visual artist and educator who also collaborates on curatorial projects and events. She is currently pursuing her graduate studies in Concordia University's Art Education Department. Her research interests include autobiographical and arts-based inquiries, memory work, storytelling and oral history. Emma has worked extensively in the non-profit sector and locates her teaching within community-based practices.
**LSQ et ASL interpreters will be present on site: https://youtu.be/gcmySJSials
University of the Streets Café organizes bilingual, public conversations in cafés and community spaces across Montreal. The program is free and open to participants of all ages, all backgrounds, and all levels of education. Without grades or diplomas, the University of the Streets Café reinvents the idea of the ‘university’ by creating spaces for lifelong learning, critical thinking and community engagement in local neighbourhoods.
Participating Artists: L'Université autrement : Dans les cafés
Curator(s): University of the Streets Café