During the late nineteenth Century in Canada, traveling on the train connected the individual traveler to a collective whole. This means of transportation made the confederation visible. Today, traveling on those tracks speaks of a national memory that has almost been forgotten. In today’s age, saturated with social media and rapid transport, it is archaic to think this nation was once connected through the building of metal tracks, yet this poetic nationalism is alluring.
NEGOTIATING SPACES: Visual Recollections of Train Travel in Canada, is an evolving art installation exploring contemporary train culture in Canada, comprised of medium format and Polaroid photography, video, audio and written blog accounts. Negotiating Spaces works to re‐initiate a dialogue between the individual and the land by critically investigating Canadian perception of space, myth of the land and the reality of the rail travel experience. Created through a two‐month journey from Vancouver to Halifax and Winnipeg to Churchill, this body of work confronts traditional landscape imagery and looks to re‐define what being a Canadian means via rail.
Artist Lindsey Bond is a third generation Canadian, born in Alberta and brought up in the vast prairies and wide skies of the western belt. According to Bond, “This land and light taught me what being Canadian meant.” Upon returning from living abroad, Bond realized that she had very little first-hand experience of the country she called home. It was this realization which inspired Bond to seek out what the term home meant to her. Negotiating Spaces is the result of this exploration. Bond says, “This exploration pushed me to de-mystify gaps in my own knowledge about the history, people and ultimately the identity of Canada, landscape and myself.”
The newest component of the project is The Story Line, a blog where visitors can contribute their own railway memories, photographs or drawings. In exhibiting Negotiating Spaces at the Port Moody Station Museum, Bond hopes to further the dialogue critically investigating Canadian perception of space. We encourage you to share your own rail travel experiences on The Story Line blog at home or when you come to see the exhibit at the Museum.
As part of our celebration of the 125th anniversary of the 1st trans-Canada passenger train, the Port Moody Station Museum is pleased to host Negotiating Spaces on now until February 26th, 2012. You can preview the exhibit on Ms. Bond’s website.