Tina Martel aerie

~ Tina Martel

Tina Martel is a mixed media artist who works with hand made papers, photographs, thread, gold, silver and copper leaf, medium and acrylic paint. The pieces, depending on which body of work, can be seen and experienced in terms of painting, books, installation and video. She views her work as both reflections of and responses to the environment she finds herself in. The locations and experiences varies widely: from urban Calgary, the lower east side of New York, Europe, isolated Northern Alberta and storm swept Saskatchewan.

Lines Written on a Map of Calgary

On the corner of Crowchild and Fifth
she buys the coordinates to this city:
pink subdivisions, mint green parks
flattened and folded to hide the sprawl.

At the intersection of Centre Street and the Bow,
quadrants encroach into prairie, soon to absorb Cochrane,
Canmore, Banff, Brooks, Edmonton, Vancouver,
St. John’s, London, Istanbul, Venice, Venus.

But on this map, equipped with legend, progress is contained.
Pioneer history at M23, playoffs at Q18, poverty at P17,
the tsunami that devastated her dreams one summer evening: K16.

She scrawls Saturday across Inglewood, chickadee at Point McKay,
coyote at the Queen’s Park Cemetery, chasse in the grey industrial expanse
of Highfield. She writes eclipse on Nose Hill one February evening
just above freezing, equinox where she lay beside the snowmelt.

Later, she’ll trace the backbone of the Bow,
massaging its vertebrae beneath her, a barefoot reading
of summer-soft stones. She’ll scale the Tower,
shoot the rapids below 14th Street, scramble through suburbs.

She’ll set out with nothing but backpack and dawn,
guides to the endemic and accidental, water to withstand a drought.
No city deep enough to quench her dreams.

She’ll seek the places where prairie lingers,
wind unpunctuated by skyscraper, pasque flower uninhibited
by stone. She’ll walk the night known only to coyotes and vagrants,
make love in folds of cricket song, saying nothing.

~ Angela Rae Waldie

Angela Rae Waldie teaches at Mount Royal University. Born in Creston, BC, she has spent much of her life crossing and re-crossing the Continental Divide, and her poetry reflects her affinity for mountain and prairie places. She is currently working on a collection entitled A Single Syllable of Wild.


Christina Nguyen youth entry

~ Christina Nguyen

Christina Nguyen I’m 14 and in grade 9 at Holy Cross School. I’ve always liked drawing, especially characters. Although I love to draw for fun, I’d also like to pursue a career in visual art. I’ve started entering art contests and really liked the opportunity to be a part of The Calgary Project because I love my city and get to show it through art.

cowtown design

it’s not perfect
nothing is
certainly not me
so i get this biz

i remember

telling those cats back in hot tdot
that i was leaving for a place
to even visit they would not
the fact i was departing from the place i was conceived
put the mental off the ignorant and my gut upon the grieve
they just couldn’t believe
but somehow i was certain i’d an ace upside my sleeve
and my sanity
i had to retrieve

this city has changed me
mad rearranged me
i started making such shifts
it was thought here had deranged me

my voice and my veins bled a fresh inflection
the edifice erected was designed by affection
i made the stories of my life come together
a collection

and here i be,
I’m in the zone, the place I call home
every day falling more in love with calgary
my land of opportunity
where i relate with poetry
and slam with the best and the rest in my society

i open young minds
the way here opened mine
with a rap hip-hop based flow of mad rhyme
years of investment in this cowtown design
many more coming for to age like fine wine

i’ve talked my way around this town
i’ve shut mad thought off like a power down
i’ve found my success
even through great duress
this capital of culture
truly is the new west

~ Wakefield Brewster

Wakefield Brewster, a.k.a. da lyrical pitbull Poet, Spoken Word Artist, Hip-Hop Recording Artist, Public Speaker, Inspirational Speaker, Founder: b.funkee productionz.

Melanie’s Sky

Alice Helwig Melanie's Sky

~ A.S. Helwig

A. S. Helwig was born in Lethbridge, AB, Canada. From an early age she drew and painted. In fact, she has painted in acrylics since she was 14 years old in the coulee hills close to her family home. Helwig took a two year commercial art program at the Medicine Hat College and then a Bachelor of Education Degree (with Distinction) from the University of Lethbridge. Helwig remains an art educator, presently teaching workshops/classes at Calgary School of Art as well as independently. Helwig attended the Banff Centre of Arts in a self-directed residency in 2008 and 2005, and received an AIR Artist in Residency in 2012. Her work is represented by, Mountain Galleries in Jasper, Banff and Whistler, and Alicat Galleries in Bragg Creek.