Job Posting: Engagement Coordinator – The Blue Cabin

Job Description

Position: Engagement Coordinator
Project: Blue Cabin Floating Artist Residency
Location: Throughout the Lower Mainland
Reporting to: Blue Cabin Committee

Hours: $25-$27/hour, 18 hours per week. Some evening and weekend work. Flexible schedule.

Start date: July 29, 2019
Application Deadline: Thursday, June 27, 2019 @ 5:00pm

Project Description:
The Blue Cabin Floating Artist Residency (BCFAR) is a collaboration between grunt gallery Other Sights for Artists’ Projects and Creative Cultural Collaborations. The collaborating organizations have formed the Blue Cabin Committee to oversee the ongoing management of the BCFAR.

About the Blue Cabin:
The BCFAR provides artists with a unique opportunity to work in a completely restored and outfitted heritage cabin/studio with deep historical roots in both the foreshore past of North Vancouver on the West Coast of British Columbia and the early years of Vancouver’s contemporary art scene. Situated on a floating platform and anchored in a marine environment, the residency features a state of the art, self-sustaining “deck house” as accommodation. Responding to the unique environment, landscape and heritage of the region, the BCFAR will be a central feature of the selected artists’ experience. This is an artist–centred residency space that welcomes local, regional and national participants as well as international guests.

The BCFAR is open to artists in all disciplines and supports the creative development of all kinds, for artists at all stages of their careers. It is intended to support artists who wish to undertake research, reflection, contemplation, production or presentation activities. Artists are asked to propose a program of public engagement as the only outcome required of the residency.

General Description of the Position:
The Engagement Coordinator works with staff, contractors, volunteers, and membership to develop contacts, programming and strengthen relationships between the Blue Cabin Floating Artist Residency (BCFAR) and its partners in the community. This is a professional position that reports to the Blue Cabin Committee and associated staff.

The Engagement Coordinator is a planner, implementer, and relationship builder who is responsible for developing this new initiative in conjunction with multiple and diverse communities across the Lower Mainland. They are also responsible for developing strategies around programming, retention and recognition of audience members, volunteers and other communities, as well as strategies for outreach. This is NOT a fundraising focused position.

The Engagement Coordinator will work within the communities the facility inhabits making connections and strengthening bonds between stakeholders and increasing visibility and access. A major focus will be on the heritage and cultural communities, and the position will require the incumbent to familiarize themselves with the many different heritage stakeholders in Vancouver and on the North Shore including community groups, non-profits, government departments, universities and museums and archives. The Engagement Coordinator will work with these groups to develop programming for the BCFAR in the form of lectures, panels, open houses, exhibits and discussions around the Blue Cabin that are part of the project’s broader curatorial activities.

The Engagement Coordinator will work with the Blue Cabin Curatorial Committee to maintain relationships within the three Indigenous host nations; as the BCFAR will move throughout waterways in the region, we are committed to strong relationships with Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh (MST). The incumbent will play a fundamental role in continuing our conversations with the MST, and continuing to build strong relationships and opportunities for collaboration. The Engagement Coordinator will maintain relationships within the infrastructure of the cities of Vancouver, North Vancouver and the District of North Vancouver, including targeted relationships with stakeholders at Northeast False Creek, the North Shore and Port Metro.

The Engagement Coordinator is expected to work independently while maintaining a strong connection to the overall project and curatorial planning.

Required Competencies:
Collaborative Reliable
Committed Independent
Community Minded Tolerant
Creative Flexible
Social Resourceful

General Responsibilities:
● Work with staff and committees to develop and enhance contacts within the identified communities.
● Develop strategies for outreach and active community development.
● Produce and develop programming at the BCFAR engaging the Heritage and cultural communities
● Design and implement a community plan that builds strong, long-term, and loyal relationships with audience members, supporters and communities.
● Forge relationships within the heritage and cultural communities across the Lower Mainland, and explore opportunities for co-programming, cross-promotion and outreach.
● Continue to develop relationships with Indigenous partners and collaborators from the host nations (Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh) as well as the wider indigenous communities of Vancouver.
● Explore engagement opportunities from other communities as necessary, and in conjunction with the Blue Cabin Committee’s vision for programming and the residency.
● Produce a news feed around community engagement that is aligned with BCFAR’s social media, website and newsletters focusing on their respective membership and community activities.
● Collaborate and communicate with neighborhood organizations to develop activities that promote the BCFAR’s role in the community (eg. community events and festivals).

Required Skills and Education:
● Superior networking skills for arts and cultural-based environments.
● Strong knowledge and commitment to bridge-building within diverse community frameworks.
● Good understanding of artist-run culture.
● Post-secondary education in an arts related program, educational program or a relevant discipline is an asset.
● Previous experience (work or volunteer) in an arts organization, community centre, educational centre or activist organizing is an asset.
● Demonstrated supervisory and interpersonal skills; ability to perform well in a team environment and collaborate with others.
● Strong written and oral communication skills; ability to target events outreach materials to varying audiences and age groups.
● Strong organizational skills, able to identify and prioritize tasks with minimal supervision, work independently, and take initiative.
● Experience with youth/adult education programming an asset.
● Working knowledge of Social Media, e.g. Facebook, Twitter and mass email systems;
● Resourceful, hands-on and pro-active.
● Previous experience in developing and maintaining strong internal and external relationships.
● Demonstrated success with strategy development, implementation and evaluation.
● Proven ability to act in an assertive but professional manner and to represent oneself and an organization in a positive manner.
● Ability to work flexible hours.
● Ability to travel throughout the Lower Mainland.

Business Ethics and the Workplace:
• Must promote and set the example for ensuring a friendly, courteous, respectful and professional work environment.
• Must maintain the confidentiality of all personal, private, and professional information obtained within the course of employment.
• Must not accept any gifts, loans or anything of value from any individuals with whom contact is had during the course of employment.

To apply: Please send cover letter and resume to Sunshine Frere by email < sunshine (at) othersights (dot) ca >

Application Deadline: Thursday, June 27, 2019 @ 5:00pm

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Pet Peeves: James and Hillary

Welcome to the May edition of Hedy Wood’s Pet Peeves! Read on as Hedy chats with grunt founder and current editor, Hillary Wood (no relation), and the investigation takes a turn toward the possibly paranormal…

Of course I believe that Hillary has a part-time cat named James. I also believe that James comes to visit by walking across two balconies, and that he stays for a couple of hours and naps on the bed and all the rest of it. Hillary Wood is a founding member of grunt gallery and is currently the editor there. She is definitely not some crazy person making up things in order to get me to write about her and some imaginary pet. And, I would like to add, you don’t see me standing around with my index finger pointed at my temple making that little twirly motion. You just don’t! I believe in James completely!

I believe in the existence of James, the part-time cat, so thoroughly that I went over to interview him and see what he had to say about Hillary.

Food bowls left out for the elusive cat-like creature, James.

After standing around on Hillary’s balcony for about half an hour, yelling for James and jiggling my bag of cat treats, I felt like it might be time for a drink……there was no sign of what I was beginning to think was a mere fig newton of Hillary’s imagination and I had a powerful thirst building. Also my yelling JAMES, JAMES!!! was starting to annoy the neighbors.

The interview went something like this:

Me: So, how about we crack open some of this pickle juice, and you tell me all about James who I believe in and know exists?

Hillary: You’re starting to make him sound like God or something! He does exist, and he comes over here every single day! I think all of your yelling has put him off, that’s all.

Me: Ha ha! Where are the glasses? Oh JAMES, you can come over any time now!!! Because I know you’re real!!!

James:

 

Me: Come on James!!! Sit on the bed, eat some stuff, come and visit. Oh JAAAAAAMES!!

James:

 

Definitely, it was time to crack open a bottle of wine. If nothing else, I could ask Hillary about James, and how he has come to be her part-time cat. Apparently, James is actually owned by a neighbor two balconies over, but he prefers to spend a lot of his time at Hillary’s. He’s sort of a cat-share cat, like a timeshare condo I guess….

So Hillary and I settled in and had a glass or two. Occasionally I would get up and go and yell for James out on the balcony. I only actually stopped doing this when I could see that it seemed to be causing Hillary psychic pain.

Hillary Wood and James the cat? Photo by Merle Addison.

I also began to make little jokes and then laugh at them really loudly, then explain the jokes and laugh some more. You know, as you do. When I reflect on it, Hillary really must have the patience of a saint.

The afternoon wore on, and there was still no sign of the alleged James. He was beginning to seem like Bigfoot or Ogo Pogo, I mean, maybe there’d be a sighting or maybe not…..but I do tend to believe in them, so what could possibly be the harm in hanging about for a bit longer? Also, around this time, another bottle of wine kind of fell out of my purse. Maybe it would be smarter to take a different approach to this particular pet interview. I decided to direct my questions to Hillary and stop yelling and treat rattling for James.

Me: So, what would James likely have to say about you? You know, if he actually existed? Oh sorry, I mean, really, what would his complaints be do you think?

Hillary: Well, he doesn’t like it when I move my feet when he’s sleeping on the bed. It makes him attack my feet.

Me: More wine?

Hillary: And he’s very protective about the balcony. He doesn’t even like it when I go out there!

Now this was beginning to seem like a pretty detailed description of imaginary cat behaviour. It was like if someone was saying, But no! The unicorn’s horn is actually sort of a pearly colour!! And the hooves have rainbows!!! Sooner or later, you have to suspend your disbelief.

Me: So how did you and James first meet then?

Hillary: James started coming over for visits when he was a tiny, shy kitten. He would creep around the corners of my place, but now, he feels very at home here. He’s here every day, usually. Probably he is scared of you being here…..and all the yelling…..

Me: Well, I never! Yelling indeed! I’ll show you YELLING little missy. JAAAAAAMMMMEEEESSSSS! JAAAAAMMMMEESSSSS!

Hillary: Would you please shut up?

It must have been around this time that I realized I had better go home. I still had no evidence that James actually existed anywhere on planet earth, and Hillary and I were on the verge of our first fight. Plus, I had the hiccups.

As I was collecting myself and preparing to leave, did I see a flash of white fur whisking by out on the balcony? Did I hear a faint and slightly ghostly meow? I can’t say for certain, but when I got home and the drinker’s remorse began to set in, I found I had a different feeling about James. I believed in him truly and I knew he really did visit every single day and all the rest of it. Honestly, I don’t know why I ever doubted him……now the only thing was to check in again with Hillary and see if she was also suffering from a kind of big headache….

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