Key dates and times: Conference at a Glance

October 25-26:  Forum on Adapting NL’s Intangible Cultural Heritage – The Lantern, 35 Barnes Road

October 25: Newfoundland and Labrador Association of Architects 2017 Architecture Lecture Series – Rocket Room @ Rocket Bakery, 272 Water Street

October 25: Folk Night Traditional Acoustic Session – The Ship Pub, Solomon’s Lane, 265 Duckworth Street

October 26:  Workshop on Adapting NL’s Historic Religious Places – Cochrane Centre (in the historic Cochrane Street United Church), 81 Cochrane Street

October 26:  Coffee and Culture at The Rooms – “Waste Not – Rugs, Rags, Ropes, and Recycling!” – The Rooms, 9 Bonaventure Avenue 

October 26:  Reception for delegates attending Conference on Adapting NL’s Historic Places – Spirit of Newfoundland, 6 Cathedral Street 

October 27-28:  Conference on Adapting NL’s Historic Places – Gower Street United Church, 99 Queen’s Road

October 27:  33rd Annual Newfoundland and Labrador Historic Trust Southcott Awards – Sunnyside, 70 Circular Road

Post-conference Tool Kit

Art Projects

Forum on Adapting NL’s Intangible Cultural Heritage

Wednesday, October 25, 2017 – The Lantern, 35 Barnes Road

9:00 am – Registration

9:30 am – Welcome and land acknowledgement

9:45 am – Keynote –   Looking Back: A decade of safeguarding ICH in Newfoundland and Labrador

Keynote speaker: Dale Jarvis (Heritage Foundation of NL)

Drawing from and inspired by UNESCO’s 2003 Convention for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage, the province of Newfoundland and Labrador held its first ICH conference in 2006, and adopted an ICH strategy in 2008. Since then, the Heritage Foundation of NL has been working to ensure that intangible cultural heritage is safeguarded as both a living heritage and as a source of contemporary creativity.  Folklorist, storyteller, and heritage activist Dale Jarvis is the ICH Development Officer for Newfoundland and Labrador, working with local partners to make sure that living heritage remains relevant to community.  In this keynote, Dale will give examples of how folklore and ICH is at the heart of local life; explain how safeguarding intangibles can contribute to healthier, more vibrant, and engaged communities; and give examples from the past decade of work to promote living heritage in Newfoundland and Labrador, setting the stage for a discussion of where tradition will take us in the future.

10:00 am – Session One:  From Sealskin to Science Fiction – Taking Tradition into the 21st Century

The 2003 Convention on ICH recognizes that intangible cultural heritage, transmitted from generation to generation, is constantly recreated by communities and groups. Our cultural heritage comes from the past, moves into the future, and evolves and changes over time. What then does “tradition” mean in the 21st century? How do we maintain traditional knowledge, while addressing contemporary needs? In this thought-provoking session we look at how people are gently pushing at the boundaries of tradition and finding new ways to keep living heritage meaningful in today’s society.

Presenters: Clare Dawn Fowler (Clare Dawn Couture); Grace Shears (Abby Shot); Dan Rubin (Perfectly Perennial), Kevin Noseworthy (Escape Quest).  Moderated by Terra Barrett (Heritage Foundation of NL).

10:40 am – Nutrition Break

11:00 am – Session Two:  Heritage in the Landwash – Safeguarding Coastal Traditions

In the fishing communities of rural Newfoundland and Labrador, architecture, place, cultural heritage, food, and traditional knowledge are interwoven. In order to best safeguard the traditions of coastal communities, strategies must recognize the importance, and the interconnectedness, of both the tangible, and the intangible. The traditions associated with our inshore fishery have been identified as being of particular concern and interest. This session looks at the cuisine and material culture of our coastal communities, and how we inspire the next young generation of livyers.

Presenters: Andrea O’Brien (Heritage Foundation of NL); Jeremy Harnum (Wooden Boat Museum of NL); Lori McCarthy (Cod Sounds); Caitlyn Bolduc-Whelan (Fishing for Success). Moderated by Crystal Braye (Wooden Boat Museum of NL).

11:40 am – Demonstrations of Living Heritage

Christine LeGrow – Spindrift Handknits

Eemaan Thind – Henna Body Art

Alex Howse – Model Boat Builder

12:15 pm – Lunch

1:15 pm – Session Three: Stories From Here

We often hear the same concern expressed by local seniors – that their stories are dying out in their communities. Moved by this concern, groups across the province have been working to create venues for community members and seniors to come together to share their ideas, experiences, memories, and traditional knowledge. This session looks at local programs to engage tradition bearers, while promoting pride in community history and traditional cultural activities, and conserving those stories in creative and innovative ways. From the merchants of Main Street, Windsor, to the goats of New Perlican, to the traditional narratives of new Canadians, we examine the stories told here.

Presenters: Jillian Gould (Bay Roberts Folklore Field School Program); Audrey Burke (Grand Falls-Windsor Heritage Society); Eileen Matthews (Heritage New Perlican); Jessica Barry (St. John’s Local Immigration Partnership); Diane Carr (Spaniard’s Bay Heritage Society). Moderated by Katie Harvey (Heritage Foundation of NL).

2:00 pm – Session Four: Safeguarding Living Heritage Across Canada

Across Canada, there is a growing recognition of the importance of intangible cultural heritage, and many jurisdictions are developing programs and projects to address traditional culture, language, and indigenous knowledge. This session starts with the work underway in the northern part of our province, with the research being done in Nunatsiavut in order to ensure the continuing vitality of Labrador Inuit culture. From there, we head west, with stops in Quebec, Ontario, and Saskatchewan, looking at recent approaches to conserving living heritage and ICH.

Presenters: Tom Gordon (Nunatsiavut); Laurier Turgeon (Laval); Beth Hanna (Ontario Heritage Trust); Ingrid Cazakoff (Heritage Saskatchewan). Moderated by Gabriel Newman (Greater Vernon Museum and Archives, BC).

3:00 pm – Nutrition Break

3:15 pm -Session Five: Close to the Floor – Dance Traditions in NL

We close off the first day of the ICH with a bang – a look at the living dance traditions of Newfoundland and Labrador! We’ll talk about step dancing, set dancing, and the work to conserve one of our most vibrant (and fun) traditions. Bring your dancing shoes!

Presenters:  Kristin Harris Walsh (Department of Folklore, Memorial University); Jane Dennison (Graduate Student, Ethnomusicology, Memorial University). Moderated by Colleen Quigley (Queen Elizabeth II Library, Memorial University), with some special guests!

4:45 pm – Finish for the Day 

Thursday, October 26, 2017 (Morning) – The Lantern, 35 Barnes Road

9:30 am – Session: Looking Forward, Making a Plan

During the morning of October 26 participants will help us to plan priorities for the next 10 years of ICH work in the province. Come have your say about what work needs to happen next!

10:45 am – Nutrition Break

11:00 am – Continue with Looking Forward, Making a Plan

12:00 pm – Wrap-up


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Newfoundland and Labrador Association of Architects 2017 Architecture Lecture Series

Wednesday (Evening) October 25, 2017 – Rocket Room @ Rocket Bakery, 272 Water Street

7:00 – 8:00 pm – Reception
8:00 pm – Lecture
FREE, no registration required

Speakers – Philip Evans CAHP MRAIC is a principal at ERA Architects and the founder of Culture of Outports. In the course of his fourteen-year career, he has led a range of conservation, adaptive reuse, design, and feasibility planning projects.

Michael McClelland CAHP OAA FRAIC, a founding principal of ERA Architects Inc., is a registered architect specializing in heritage conservation, and in particular in heritage planning and urban design. He is well known for his promotion and advocacy for heritage architecture in Canada.

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Folk Night Traditional Acoustic Session

Wednesday (Evening) October 25, 2017 – The Ship Pub, Solomon’s Lane, 265 Duckworth Street

9:00 – 11:30 pm
Admission is $5 cash at the door

Every Wednesday, music lovers and performers convene for Folk Night at The Ship Pub on Solomon’s Lane (265 Duckworth St.) – St. John’s oldest, continually-running, live music event, organized by the Newfoundland and Labrador Folk Arts Society. Started in 1974, Folk Night starts at 9:00 p.m. and runs until 11:30 p.m. Come out to enjoy amazing, well attended performances. October 25th is a traditional acoustic session, with tunes around the table all night!


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Workshop on Adapting NL’s Historic Religious Places

Thursday, October 26, 2017 (Afternoon) – Cochrane Centre (in the historic Cochrane Street United Church), 81 Cochrane Street

1:00 – 1:30 pm – Registration

1:30 – 4:30 pm – Workshop

Churches and religious organizations today are facing significant challenges to maintain their historic buildings in the face of declining congregations and volunteer bases and the costs of operating and maintaining often large, ornate buildings.  An increasing number of churches are being closed and sold and even demolished, sometimes resulting in conflict within the community.  This half day session will provide useful information and tools to religious organizations on the management of historic ecclesiastical buildings.

Presenters: Robert Pajot (National Trust for Canada); Jerry Dick (Heritage Foundation of NL); Barry Stephenson (Department of Religious Studies, Memorial University); Nicholas Lynch (Department of Geography, Memorial University); Roy Dawe (Cupids United Church), Miriam Bowlby (Cochrane Street United Church, St. John’s); David Tucker (Cochrane Centre, St. John’s). Moderated by Andrea O’Brien (Heritage Foundation of NL).

Robert Pajot from the National Trust for Canada will present the findings of a recent project that looked at cases of successful regeneration projects in rural Ontario. How these places of faith are adapting themselves to changing patterns of use and community needs hint at models that can applied elsewhere. Whether remaining open as a place of worship or finding a new vocation under new ownership, these cases demonstrate how communities can continue to benefit from the legacy of these historic buildings.

For most congregations facing the challenge of revitalizing themselves, an important first step is taking stock of their places, their organization and their role in the community. New analytical tools have recently been developed that quantify the economic impact that congregations bring to their communities. This can be a powerful tool when communicating with potential funders and the public, and can be a key motivator for congregants.

Jerry Dick from the Heritage Foundation of NL will address issues facing religious groups with examples from Newfoundland and Labrador. Many religious groups in the province are facing change and are having to think about their long-term future.  How does an historic religious structure fit into the equation?  How can a religious community be a good steward of its heritage assets while addressing practical considerations like financial and human resources?  When it becomes necessary to divest of an historic religious property, how can this be done in a way that is healthy for both the religious community and the larger community? Why does the preservation of historic religious buildings matter?

Dr. Barry Stephenson, Associate Professor of Religious Studies, Memorial University will examine the uses, attitudes and meanings of sacred spaces and religious buildings in contemporary culture. Changes in the use and function of buildings are informed by and have impacts on personal and collective identities, shared values and commitments, and relationships to pasts and futures. What do changes in the use and presence of religious buildings in our landscapes mean for us a culture?

Dr. Nicholas Lynch, Assistant Professor of Geography, Memorial University will discuss reusing built religious heritage in the contemporary city. The adaptive reuse of worship spaces is a growing practice across many urban areas in Canada, and it represents both challenges and opportunities for local stakeholders. What lessons, successes and failures are shared across different urban contexts? What possibilities are there for collaboration and engagement around these key spaces of local heritage?

Roy Dawe, Cupids United Church Board of Management will share the experience of Cupids United Church as they went through the process of installing a new geothermal heating system in the 1875 structure to replace an aging furnace in the basement that was prone to flooding. He will outline ways in which the new system has brought down operating costs and benefited the church in other ways.

Rev. Miriam Bowlby, Cochrane Street United Church and David Tucker, Cochrane Centre – will talk about how a congregation, faced with serious challenges around the maintenance of their historic church building, adopted an innovative new model to care for it. Cochrane Centre was established as a not-for-profit foundation to own and manage the church’s building assets. In addition to undertaking fundraising for much-needed restoration on the building, the group redeveloped the under-utilized Sunday School building for supportive living apartments and rental space. The congregation leases space for worship in the building at a fraction of the cost of operating the building in the past, allowing it to continue to enjoy use of the building while benefiting the broader community.

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Coffee and Culture at The Rooms – “Waste Not – Rugs, Rags, Ropes, and Recycling!”

Thursday (Afternoon), October 26, 2017 – The Rooms, 9 Bonaventure Avenue  

2:30 pm
Event free with admission to The Rooms, not included in conference registration

In the past, the Newfoundland and Labrador household also had to be versatile in order to survive. People made do with what they had and turned old objects into new items. Clothes were cut down to fit someone else, apple barrels became rocking chairs, and so on. It’s a centuries-old tradition of adaptive reuse and creativity that continues today.

Join folklorist Dale Jarvis of the Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador as he interviews two of these crafty recyclers: Trent Hardy, mat maker and owner of Waste Knot Want Knot; and Ruth Noseworthy Green, artist and rug hooker. Trent Hardy founded his braided mat-making company on the principle that we should not be simply throwing away materials that can still be used, turning old fishing rope into modern floor mats. Ruth Noseworthy Green’s hooked mats have been exhibited in the Arts and Letters Competition, The Bonavista North Museum Gallery, the Kildevil Far, and hang in private collections across Canada. Together, they’ll talk about the tradition of reuse, reinvention, ropes, rags, and rugs!


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Reception for delegates attending Conference on Adapting NL’s Historic Places

Thursday (Evening), October 26, 2017 – Spirit of Newfoundland, 6 Cathedral Street  

7:30 pm
Pre-registration is required, cash bar

Join fellow conference goers for an evening of conversation, finger food and refreshments at the historic St. John’s Masonic Temple. Entertainment by Kelly Russell.

A professional musician since 1975, Kelly Russell has been a member of landmark groups Figgy Duff, The Wonderful Grand Band, The Plankerdown Band, Bristol’s Hope, Kelly Russell & The Planks and The Irish Descendants. Working closely for many years with legendary fiddlers Rufus Guinchard and Emile Benoit, learning, recording and documenting their unique music, Kelly has inherited genuine status as one of Newfoundland’s leading traditional music performers.

Kelly has been awarded the Nfld & Lab Arts Council Award for Music (1987), twice awarded the Tourism Industry Association Certificate of Recognition (1991 & 1997), the prestigious Marius Barbeau Award (1997) for his contribution to Canadian Folklore and the City of St. John’s Legend Award (1999). In 2010, Kelly was the first ever recipient of the “Tradition Bearer” designation from NL’s Provincial Historic Commemorations Program. In 2013 Kelly received the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal and is a member of The Order of Canada.

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Conference on Adapting NL’s Historic Places

Friday, October 27, 2017 – Gower Street United Church, 99 Queen’s Road  

8:15 am – Registration

9:00 am – Welcome and Overview

9:15 am – Session One:  Plenary Panel Session – The Context for Change

Newfoundland and Labrador is facing change on every front.  Rural populations are declining rendering many historic churches and community structures redundant.  New models of doing business are being introduced that impact how people use and lease building space and social enterprise offers hope for managing heritage buildings for which there may not be a business case in the regular market economy.  New technologies can help in the preservation of historic structures and in adapting them to modern needs and standards.  These and other issues and trends will be explored that help set the stage for adapting heritage to today and into the future. This moderated session will set the context for the conference by examining the issues and trends that heritage needs to respond to in Newfoundland and Labrador.  A variety of panelists will explore such topics as social, demographic, economic and cultural trends in the province and beyond that will impact heritage in the coming decades.

Panelists:  Mark Thompson Brandt (MTBA Associates, Ottawa); Robert Pajot (National Trust for Canada); Dave Lane (Common Ground, St. John’s); Neil Hardy (Altus, St. John’s). Moderated by Rob Greenwood (Harris Centre, Memorial University). 

10:30 am – Nutrition Break

11:00 am – Session Two:  Concurrent Sessions – Adaptive Reuse

Redundant or under-utilized heritage structures need to find new uses if they are to have a continued life.  How does a community go about deciding on sustainable new uses?  What are appropriate design interventions in historic buildings? What is the business case for adaptive reuse? There are countless examples from around the world in communities both large and small of successful adaptive reuse projects

Panel 1 – Design Issues: How new development meets old

This session will explore principles and approaches for adapting heritage buildings to new uses while respecting their heritage integrity.  While the Standards and Guidelines for the Preservation of Historic Places in Canada lay out principles for the appropriate treatment of heritage structures there are a variety of ways of interpreting them. Also to be explored will be the question of how one builds contemporary buildings within an historic neighbourhood or community.  A number of case studies will be presented.

Panelists:  Michael McClelland (ERA Architects, Toronto); Robert Mellin (McGill School of Architecture, McGill); Jessica Stanford (LAT49 Architecture, St. John’s). Moderated by Emily Campbell (Fougere Menchenton Architecture Inc, St. John’s). 

Panel 2 – The Dollars and Sense of Heritage

Panelists will explore the economics of heritage in terms of making heritage adaptive reuse projects financially feasible.  What can governments do to enhance the viability of commercial heritage development projects through planning and incentives?  What innovative financing models/approaches exist to undertake heritage adaptive reuse projects? What is the role of developers?  Of the public and community sectors?

Panelists:  Robert Shipley (Professor Emeritus, U Waterloo); Duncan Whitcomb (Martek Morgan Finch Inc., St. John’s); Neil Hardy (Altus, St. John’s). Moderated by Brandon Copeland (Urban East, St. John’s). 

Panel 3 – Innovative Models for Managing/Utilizing/Financing Heritage Structures

This session looks at innovative models for financing and managing heritage buildings that include:  a St. John’s church that was able to keep its doors open by setting up a new management structure; a new way of leasing office space in heritage buildings that supports business startups; new ways of fundraising for and financing heritage projects.

Panelists: Robert Pajot (Regeneration Program, National Trust for Canada); Miriam Bowlby (Cochrane Street United Church, St. John’s); David Tucker (Cochrane Centre, St. John’s); Dave Lane (Common Ground, St. John’s). Moderated by Anna Smith (Common Ground, St. John’s). 

12:15 pm – Lunch

1:15 pm – Session Three:  Concurrent Sessions – Innovative Management of Heritage Resources and Ensuring Sustainability  

New ways of doing things: technologies; operational models, innovative financing can help us to ensure the sustainability of heritage resources.  Good consultative processes can help communities to identify what is important to them in terms of their heritage resources and and can help create community buy-in for planning measure to protect heritage resources.

Panel 1 – Identifying Adaptive Reuse Opportunities

Your community has one or more vacant or under-utilized heritage structures. How does one go about identifying sustainable opportunities/building program for adaptive reuse?  How do we encourage thinking outside of the box? What is the role of the community?  Of the community sector?  Of the business community?  What are other heritage assets that can be used to create enterprise and activity in the community?

Panelists:  Phil Evans (ERA Architects, Toronto); John Norman (Bonavista Living); Jerry Dick (Heritage Foundation of NL)

Panel 2 – The Importance of Cultural Landscapes:  Aboriginal Perspectives

Our heritage is about much more than our historic structures.  It is, in a very significant way, about the land that we inhabit:  our natural inheritance; traces of past human habitation; stories, human practices and ritual in the landscape and spiritual significance that give us meaning today.  This session will explore ways in which cultural landscapes having meaning for Aboriginal communities and in which they are seeking to protect them that will provide useful perspectives for all Canadians.

Panelists:  Jamie Brake (Nunatsiavut Government, Labrador); Sarah Gordon (Department of Folklore, Memorial University); Mitch Blanchard (Qualipu Cultural Foundation, NL). Moderated by Arn Keeling (Department of Geography, Memorial University). 

2:30 pm – Nutrition Break

3:00 pm – Session Four:  Concurrent Sessions – Evolving Meanings of Heritage for the Present and Future

In a world of rapid cultural, social and economic shifts what is the place of heritage?  How can we ensure that heritage is relevant to individuals and communities today and not just the preserve of a small group of heritage advocates?  How can heritage contribute to our quality of life and the future of our communities?  What will be the heritage of the future?  These are some of the questions that we will be exploring in this theme area.

Panel 1 – Making Newfoundland and Labrador’s Heritage of the Future

This session will explore how we build buildings today.  In a world of increasing uniformity and throw away buildings constructed to last a few decades how should we be building so that people of the future will care enough about places to preserve them?  What are approaches and principles that we could apply that would ensure that new buildings, infrastructure and landscape design are of this time but also of this place?

Panelists:  Lola Sheppard (U Waterloo School of Architecture); Taryn Sheppard (Woodford Sheppard Architects, St. John’s); Matthew Brown (Ekistics Plan and Design, Halifax). Moderated by Jerry Dick (Heritage Foundation of NL).

Panel 2 – Heritage and Technology

This session will look at “Smart Heritage” and how technology can help owners of heritage buildings by making them more affordable to upgrade, operate and manage.  Also considered will be new digital mapping technology for the documentation of heritage structures.  Also discussed will be the need for holistic approaches to understanding historic buildings (e.g., building envelope and passive building systems) when deciding on appropriate interventions.

Panelists:  Chris Foran (SDMM Digital Reality Specialists, Halifax); Mark Thompson Brandt (MTBA Associates, Ottawa); Grant Genova (Fresh Fruit & Architecture, St. John’s). Moderated by Chris Woodford (Woodford Sheppard Architects, St. John’s).

Panel 3 – Heritage as a Tool for Community Revitalization

There are numerous examples in the province and beyond of communities that have utilized their heritage resources as a tool for community revitalization.  This session will look at a number of successful case studies, highlighting the processes and tools used.

Panelists:  Robert Pajot (Regeneration Program, National Trust for Canada); David Bradley (Bonavista Historic Townscape Foundation); John Norman (Bonavista Living). Moderated by Nicholas Lynch (Department of Geography, Memorial University). 

4:30 pm – Finish for the Day 

Saturday, October 28, 2017 (Morning) – Gower Street United Church, 99 Queen’s Road

9:00 am – Session One:  Plenary Panel Session – Perspectives on Heritage and Sustainability

While the ability to preserve and sustain heritage buildings is a lot about dollars and cents, there are other aspects that fit into the sustainability equation such as community identity, pride, the maintenance of a distinctive culture, and the social benefits of heritage.  Two speakers will share their thoughts based on their work in two communities in Newfoundland and Labrador.

Presenters:  David Bradley (Bonavista Historic Townscape Foundation); and Zita Cobb (Shorefast Foundation, Fogo Island). Moderated by Sheilagh O’Leary (Deputy Mayor, City of St. John’s). 

10:15 am – Nutrition Break 

10:45 am – Session Two:  Plenary Panel Session – Place-making and Heritage: The Role of Stories

Historic places are about more than their style of construction and age.  They are the embodiment of memories and stories that give them meaning and a sense of identity for people and contribute to conviviality and community.  This session will explore the role of stories and narrative in place-making and how we can incorporate our stories to give historic places relevance for people today.

Presenters:  Dale Jarvis (Heritage Foundation of NL); Kristin Catherwood (Saskatchewan Heritage); Chris Brooks (Battery Radio, St. John’s). Moderated by Diane Tye (Department of Folklore, Memorial University). 

12:00 pm – Wrap-up

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33rd Annual Newfoundland and Labrador Historic Trust Southcott Awards

Friday (Evening), October 27, 2017 – Sunnyside, 70 Circular Road  

Doors Open: 7:00 p.m. | Awards: 7:15 p.m. | Reception to follow
Tickets: $10 Historic Trust Members/Students/Conference Attendees | $20 Non-Members

Please join the Newfoundland and Labrador Historic Trust in celebration of the passionate individuals, families, community organizations, corporations, and governments who work to preserve our province’s built heritage.

Established in 1984, the Southcott Awards are bestowed annually to honour outstanding achievements in heritage restoration, design in context, heritage stewardship, heritage trades, and lifetime achievement in the preservation of built heritage in Newfoundland and Labrador.

Enjoy live music, a cash bar, and hors d’oeuvres in one of St. John’s most beautiful historic homes.

Tickets available at:

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Post-Conference Tool Kit

The conference is intended to provide a combination of practical information and case studies that communities and property owners can apply to their own heritage buildings along with some thought-provoking ideas about how we think about heritage in the present and going into the future.  Each of the sessions will seek to capture and distill some principles or lessons learned about the adaptation of heritage.  These will be put together into a “toolkit” for distribution after the concert to be available to a broader audience.

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Art Projects

Another dimension of the conference will be the showcasing of commissioned arts projects by Newfoundland and Labrador artists, that will explore concepts such as:

  • What heritage means today and its role in our contemporary society
  • The connection between “heritage” and “place”
  • Evolving heritage

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