In celebration of International Earth Day, Griffin Art Projects presents a series of afternoon events reflecting on the neighboring Mackay Creek wetland, directly behind the gallery, and our collective responsibility for its protection. We encourage you to come and contemplate this important geographic site through a range of artistic events. Please join us for one, or a series, of these exciting activities!

12:00 pm, Mark Timmings and Stephen Morris, Wetland Senario, Performed by musica intima

In collaboration with the Contemporary Art Gallery, Griffin Art Projects will host Wetland Senario, a composition by Morris and Timmings based on the musical transcription of field recordings from a marsh on Saturna Island, British Columbia, and performed by the award-winning ensemble music intima.

Wetland Senario pays heed to the tiny ecosystem at a crucial time in its history: environmental reports state that frogs and songbirds are disappearing; at the same time, airplane drones and other human-made sounds are increasing. The composition’s formal purity emphasizes transparency, truth an fidelity in its approach to the soundscape. Engaged in ritual, Wetland Senario blurs the boundaries between choir, audience, and local environmental phenomena. The true performer is the wetland; the event a collective awareness of our shared, if endangered, acoustic environment.


12:30 pm, T’uy’t’tanat Cease Wyss, Indigenous Plant Walk

Returning to Griffin Art Projects after her 2016 residency, T’uy’t’tanat (Cease Wyss) will lead participants on a walk focusing on the Mackay Wetlands, sharing stories and cultural information about the Skwxwu7mesh peoples and her extensive knowledge of local indigenous plants and their uses. The walk will be accompanied with local indigenous iced tea from Raven Hummingbird Teas which Cease prepares with her family.


3:00 pm, Julia Alards-Tomalin, Echo Ecological - Wetlands Restoration Presentation

Local restoration activist Julia Alards-Tomalin will present the talk Undoing a Lifetime of Damage: The Ecological Restoration of Mackay Creek and Estuary and share her knowledge and experience working on restoration in this area. Ecological restoration is a worthwhile, but complex, process that has been gaining support and momentum in recent years. She will look at a case study on the restoration of MacKay Creek Estuary and the various stages that have taken place in this project from the initial gathering of support to the trials of maintaining the site.


4:00 pm, Mark Timmings and Stephen Morris, Wetland Senario, Performed by musica intima

The gallery will also host a second performance of the Wetland Senario which will be performed by musica intima from within the setting of the Mackay Wetland itself. This choral work which takes its soundscape from the wetland will be returned to a similarly fecund landscape to mix its bird calls with the ambience of our own mini ecosystem. As a third realization of this atmospheric work, there will be an evening performance in the cathedral like expanse of the Contemporary Art Gallery that evening, Saturday, April 28, 7:30pm.


This special Earth Day program is the first in what we envision as an ongoing commitment to cultural production that raises awareness of this delicate ecosystem. Griffin Art Projects is dedicated to joining these pioneering restoration efforts to protect this essential part of our environment.