On Sunday, September 23rd, 2012, the Bishop Wild Bird Sanctuary, along with the Eco Art Incubator, hosted an open house for the Fall Equinox. Vernon artist Heidi Maddess and Vernon writer Laisha Rosnau launched their Eco Art Incubator commissioned chapbook, Sanctuary. This beautiful little book with original watercolour and haiku-like poems was printed in a limited edition and available on site during the open house.
During the open house, Kelowna poet Nancy Holmes read from her new collection The Flicker Tree: Okanagan Poems and artists, Joanne Salé and Leanne Cadden, as well as three UBCO students had site-specific and interactive work on display, including the popular Bird Poetry Laboratory.
April 2012: This event featured students from UBC’s Okanagan campus who launched a series of Eco Art surprises, inviting the public to participate while heightening awareness of the Bishop Sanctuary’s role in conservation. The community group, Vernon in Transition, invited the public to make flags out of eco-friendly inks and materials. The student projects were developed by four teams of Creative Writing students from UBC.
Visitors were offered the chance to listen to mp3 mini-plays based on the four words of the place’s name, Bishop Wild Bird Sanctuary created by Tristan MacKinlay, Melissa Stein, Kevin Jesuino, and Trestan Shunter. Jessica Bonney, Brittney Broder, Regina Gayou, and Michelle Grahame created the Bird Poetry Lab where members of the public created bird-oriented haiku, origami, dada and found poems in a wonderful gazebo with taxidermied birds alongside them. Morio Fukunaga, Dylan Lenz, Brittni MacKenzie-Dale, Grace McKinnon, Stacy Schmidt, and Robyn Weninger collaboratively wrote an alternate “disaffected” field guide with strange legends. And lastly, Julia Caceres Booth, Francine Lingad, Siarra Sens, Laura Sciarpelletti, Ben Stewart and Amy Stetzl confronted visitors with souvenir Eco-Tickets in a comic intervention that raised awareness of our relationship to place and provide guests to the sanctuary with a quirky souvenir.