A small-town girl captivated by diversity

I grew up in a rural community in southern Ontario. I grew up knowing every person that lived on my long country road, and I had gone to school with the same group of kids from kindergarten to grade 12. Although small town life has its charms, it also lacks a sense of diversity that…

Emigration to Vancouver – A study in other cultures

To those who ask me to describe it, I like to compare Vancouver to the forests that surround it and through which I travel so often. Cedars, pines, cypresses – so many varieties make up this green ensemble. One who takes the time to look can distinguish all the nuances, where each variety has its…

Dana Claxton: Fringing the Cube

Merging Lakota traditions with so-called Western influences, while using a powerful “mix, meld and mash” approach, Claxton addresses the oppressive legacies of colonialism by critiquing representations of Indigenous people that circulate in art, literature and popular culture. Dana Claxton: Fringing the Cube opens to the public on Oct. 27, 2018 and will be on view…

From the unknown to the familiar

From the sweltering heat of Chennai, India to the rainy coldness of Vancouver, Canada, moving halfway around the world has provided me with an abundance of new experiences. India, known for its diversity in culture, is sometimes scrutinized by its own citizens for not being as accepting as countries like Canada. Hence for me, life…

Guo Pei: Couture Beyond

The Vancouver Art Gallery will be unveiling Guo Pei: Couture Beyond, the first Canadian exhibition devoted to the work of Guo Pei, China’s preeminent couturière. This mid-career survey features more than forty complete looks from Guo Pei’s most iconic runways from 2006 to 2017. In her theatrical, extravagant creations, Guo Pei combines contemporary aesthetics, production…

I wanted another way of life

Leaving for Canada was a choice I had made a long time ago. Originally from the French countryside, from a family that takes little or no vacation and where we work hard, travelling is somewhat foreign to us. Despite that, leaving my comfort zone and leaving alone for far, far away from home tempted me.…

Bem vindo à Vancouver

Do you know what a Brazil nut is called in Brazil? A nut. Why am I mentioning this silly joke? Well, we Latinas don’t call ourselves “Latinas” before moving out of South America. We usually identify with our specific nationality, not with the whole continent, particularly in Brazil, where we speak Portuguese instead of Spanish,…

A childhood dream come true…

As a child I dreamed of travelling, exploring new horizons and learning other languages. Whenever my parents took a trip I always hoped that they would take me along on their journey, at the very last minute. Their travels were a time of long absences and tearful goodbyes. Wanting to escape myself, I came up…

A Delhi state of mind

Beneath the surface of New Delhi traffic lies acceptance. One might easily miss it amid the cacophonous honks, the strain of overworked engines and the veil of smog, but it is persistent. You find it on the face of every driver who is cut off (and honks) or crosses on red (while honking) or slices…

The move to Canada

One day I came home from work and opened my Gmail to find the golden email from Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) – a request to submit my passport at the nearest Canadian High Commission. Finally, a new adventure was about to unfold. I was going to be a Permanent Resident in Canada (Kanedaaaa!). I…

Haggling in India

It feels as though everyone in India is an entrepreneur. A fair assumption when travelling the country is that no product or service is too insignificant to bargain over. Even those already in employ, such as IndiGo baggage charge collectors, appear somewhat disappointed not to be cajoled. An expectant look, daring you to twist their…

Here, my idealism is almost realistic

I left France mostly because my interactions with my compatriots no longer suited me. It was as though every conversation I engaged in was met with a narrowness of spirit, a rejection of differences and an unjustified superiority. Two years later, I don’t feel sorry. For the first two months of my stay, I did…

La Chanson de Tadoussac

Arriving near Tadoussac, Quebec, we were immersed in fog, which spread across the breadth of the St. Lawrence River. Crossing the Saguenay River by the free public ferry, one could see just the tops of other vessels. This cold foggy shroud enveloped the little community of Tadoussac until mid-morning. When the fog lifted, we were…