Our Past, Present and Future
Canada at 150+: Trauma, Memory, and the Story of Canada
SACHA received a major grant from Canada Heritage as part of the commemoration of 150 years of confederation of Canada under the title Canada 150. Our project presented a series of public art events and exhibitions to explore experiences of trauma as neglected and yet foundational parts of the story of Canada. This project emerged out of recent commemorative events and reconciliation processes related to residential schools, the Komagata Maru incident, Japanese internment, and the Chinese Head-Tax, all of which emphasize the need to explore how the past shapes our present. The core of the project was an art exhibition, at multiple sites, featuring works by artists across Canada. The main exhibition took place in Punjabi Market, with additional works on display at UBC’s Asian Centre and at the SFU Goldcorp Center in downtown Vancouver. The second major component of the project was a theatrical production that explored the intersections of the lives of Canadians coping with different kinds of trauma, distant and near, staged in a “Vancouver Special” home associated with migration in the 1970s-80s. Other activities, such as walking tours accompanied these two main initiatives.
This project invited the public to consider trauma within a longer, ongoing story, and to consider what comes next and what connects us all in our experiences of trauma and healing and to embrace this story as a part of celebration of 150 years of Canada.