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McGill Reporter
April 13, 2006 - Volume 38 Number 15
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Around campus

Awareness through art

Erica Zelfand

On April 6, the Sexual Assault Centre of McGill Students' Society (SACOMSS) hosted the vernissage of its annual art exhibit. This year's show, Fire with Water, confronts the issues of sexual assault and gender-based violence through painting, sculpture, photography and collage.

As explained in the blurb about Stephanie Robertson's painting, "The Body Remembers," the show is about "giving people, and more specifically women, the platform to express visually their emotions and thoughts with the possibility of finding a solution."

The show features not only works by 11 local artists, but murals and body casts made by local high school students ages 13 to 19. The exhibits challenge myths about sexual assault. For example, Kate Schneider's "Whose Fault?" incorporates mug shots of young women and men, questioning the way survivors of sexual assault are blamed.

As one SACOMSS volunteer explained, Fire with Water "demonstrates the importance of continuing to provide support for the experiences of survivors and those affected by sexual assault."

The exhibit is on display for the entire month of April at Galerie V/Café Shaika, 5526 Sherbrooke W., in Notre Dame de Grace. For information, email

McCord's Haida art

A raven rattle (circa 1850)A raven rattle and puffin forehead mask, both circa 1850
Puffin forehead mask (circa 1850)

Despite its central Canadian location, McCord Museum has one of the earliest and most significant collections of Haida art in North America, thanks to George Mercer Dawson, who travelled to Haida Gwaii (the Queen Charlotte Islands) in 1878. Dawson, son of McGill principal John Dawson, was a quirky guy with wide-ranging interests and an anthropological bent to his acquisitive nature.

Objects were chosen for the McCord's next exhibition, "Haida Art," with the help of Robert Davidson, a contemporary Haida artist. Davidson's recent work will be displayed in the upcoming "The Abstract Edge."

Caption follows
Robert Davidson's Ravenous (2003)

More than 85 objects will be on display, ranging from feast bowls, to boxes, to masks. At times naturalistic, at times abstract, Haida art is likened to a vocabulary with a rich narrative grammar that speaks of the object's function, tells a story, or explores the Haida cosmology.

Haida Art: Mapping an Ancient Language is on view at the McCord Museum from April 29 until October 22. Robert Davidson: The Abstract Edge, runs from May 27 to October 15. For more info, see, or call 398-7100.

Researchers spring into action

In the spring a young man's fancy lightly turns to thoughts of love," Tennyson said so well. But McGill research can also wax poetic on the season that has the world doing biological somersaults down a newly green grassy hill.


An event called Spring into Research will highlight work that touches on nature's stirrings at this time of year. The topics range from earthworms to using MRI machines to track tree growth, from creating edible urban landscapes to understanding poultry adaptability.

Philippe Séguin, Brian Ward, Ciro Ruiz-Feria, Vikram Bhatt, Pierre Dutilleul, Joann Whalen and Matthias Leblanc will be participating in the event taking place on Tuesday, April 25 at the Macdonald Campus Raymond Building at 11 am.

Each researcher will talk briefly and answer questions. There will be some maple taffy available and for a greenhouse, barn and arboretum tour.

Tech for teachers

cell phone

Do u kno txt msg? Y? Gr8 4 u! - lol! ;) Comprehending the above is a generational litmus test: if it makes sense to you, chances are you are what one high-tech guru calls a digital native — weaned on video games, MuchMusic and fluent in the arcane language of text messaging.

If the line above looks more-or-less as though a typewriter had exploded on the page, then you are what that same guru would call a digital immigrant — and, as teachers, you're going to need to learn to communicate with the locals.

Instructional Multimedia Services (IMS) is here to offer some translation help. Their third annual teaching and technology fair, A Taste of Teaching & Technology, aims to help bridge the gap that teachers may feel lies between them and their tech-savvy students. The main event will be displays from professors who use technology in their classrooms.

"This is an opportunity for faculty to share what they do and for others to explore what they can do," says Cindy Ives of IMS, adding that there will be some 25 professors presenting at the fair. "It's a community learning environment."

Staffers from IMS will also be on hand to explain the software, hardware and services available at McGill for professors to enhance their pedagogy.

Ives says that there will also be door prizes, donated by local businesses, so some lucky attendees may well lol.

A Taste of Teaching & Technology, May 4, 1- 4 pm, on the main floor of the Faculty Club.

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