In April 2015, students from Givins/Shaw Junior Public School participated in Arts Alive Day, a school-wide event designed to provide them with hands on experiences in a range of artistic media. The Koffler Gallery provided tours of our current exhibition Erratics as a way of introducing the topic of photography as a tool for understanding history.
Evocative photographs of the past were pulled from the archives of Givins/Shaw, and served as source material for the school’s current grade 3, 4, 5, and 6 students to reflect on the school’s history.
More than one student was asked to respond to the same image, by writing short stories about what they thought the photograph conveyed. Some narratives were rooted in known facts about the school, or in plausible assumptions about the photographs captured there.
The students’ stories were displayed in an exhibition at Artscape Youngplace, entitled Stranger Than Fiction, where all of the narratives and their respective photos were exhibited together, challenging the viewer to separate the “fact” from the “fiction”.