Message from the Director

It has been extremely challenging to encounter the news these past few weeks, with so many horrific images, so much awful information, that has become, sadly, all too commonplace. This is an emotional time for everyone.

A bedrock principle of our university is that it is a place for learning, collaboration, and growth. As an academic institution, we all share in the power of education, discussion, and understanding. As such, we encourage respectful conversations and the sharing of diverse perspectives. However, it is imperative that such dialogue happen in an environment where one feels safe. We are committed to fostering an inclusive and safe environment for all members of our community. As such, remember that many people at the School of Art and University of Manitoba in general are grieving. For many, every new piece of information brings more pain, anguish, and despair. As these events unfold, people from many communities, faiths, sexual orientations, and genders are scared and afraid to speak their truth. This is the time to engage in such discussions with empathy, patience, kindness, and respect for one another. Yes, dialogue is important; however, it is critical that we reflect on what it is we say, create, and write. Our words, images, creative activities—and, yes, even the clothing we wear—can generate painful emotions for many. 

Remember that our community is ever strengthened by encouraging such discourse in a safe and respectful environment for us all.

– Dr. Ed Jurkowski, Director, School of Art

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