Satisfy your demolition addiction with AF-Calgary’s Feb 2013 grant winner


Calgary has a demolition addiction and a collective of local artists striving to transform 11 houses scheduled for destruction into wonderful pieces of temporary art has won Awesome Foundation – Calgary’s February 2013 $1,000 micro-grant.

In May 2013, eleven houses will be demolished on 5th Avenue in the Calgary neighbourhood of Sunnyside to make way for one dense apartment block. WRECK CITY: An Epilogue for 809 is an optimistic experiment which will pay tribute to the history of the spaces and the lives lived within the homes.

Instigated as an epilogue for the 809 Gallery, one of Calgary’s most influential pop-up garage galleries (and also scheduled for demolition), eight artist-curators representing some of Calgary’s best and rising stars in the local arts and culture scene will invite over 30 artists, musicians and performers to participate in the project. With the blessing of the housing developers themselves, they will be free to radically alter the architecture of entire homes, reshaping and reusing materials without the need for repair at the end of the project.

The ensemble of artist-curators behind WRECK CITY include Matthew Bouree, Caitlind r.c. Brown, Jennifer Crighton, Brandon Dalmer, Andrew Frosst, John Frosst, Shawn Mankowske and Ryan Scott. Together they have founded galleries, run festivals, instigated long-term collectives and have toured made-in-Calgary art around the world.

After a month of work transforming the homes, the temporary art displays will be open to the public for viewing between April 19 and 27. Shortly after the nine days of exhibition, the houses will be demolished.

WRECK CITY is entirely self-funded from the curator’s own pockets, and Awesome Calgary’s $1,000 no-strings-attached micro-grant will enable them to cover the insurance needed for such an event, as well as a portion of the hardware and promotional materials, allowing the collective to focus the majority of their efforts on showcasing the potential of re-using domestic spaces in Calgary prior to redevelopment.

To follow the progress of WRECK CITY as it progresses towards its April debut, make sure to check out their website.

And to see who else the folks over at WRECK CITY were up against this month, relive our Thousand Dollar Thursday event over on Storify. Highlights include mountain biking kids, puppet buses and more kids playing it forward through the power of sport!

Source: The Awesome Foundation

The Top4 Finalists and Honourable Mentions for February 2013

Only a few more days until this month’s Awesome Calgary Thousand Dollar Thursday and without further ado, here’s this month’s AF-Calgary Top4 Finalists and Honourable Mentions, in no particular order:

Top4 Finalists

  1. The Big Green Puppet Bus by Sean Fraser:  “A travelling Puppet Theatre teaching environmental conservation to families and school kids.”
  2. Take a Kid Mountain Biking Day 2013 by Richard Link:  “Mountain bikes, little kids and a party.  What could be better?”
  3. Play It Forward Projects by Darlene Fedyna:  “Free Sport Spectacular Summer Camp.”
  4. The Neighbourhood Project: An Epilogue for 809 Gallery by Caitlind Brown:  “A community-based experiment re-imagining domestic spaces, eight curators and 30 artists are transforming 11 houses scheduled for demolition into temporary art, installation, and performance spaces at the end of April 2013.”

Honourable Mentions

  • Hip Hop Innovation by Rebecca Dawn:  “Indie rock meets Hip Hop: multi-element, multi-media event for all ages.”
  • YYC Burger Week by Sabahat Naureen:  “A week-long friendly competition between YYC’s best burgers!”
  • Gotwood Field Invitational by Tony Grimes:  “Five hand-made, laser cut Settlers of Catan game boards, each given as gifts or tournament prizes to local gamer groups.”


A reminder that this month’s Thousand Dollar Thursday is presented in partnership with the Calgary Public Library and the Calgary Public Library Foundation, and will be at the Memorial Park Library, second floor on Thursday, February 28.  Come see the Top4 Finalists for this month pitch their ideas for a chance to win a $1,000 no-strings-attached micro-grant to make their idea a reality!  Doors open at 6 p.m. and we hope to see you there.

Also, we’re officially recruiting again for 2013!  If you’re interested in joining the team or simply want to learn more about becoming an AF-Calgary Trustee or Volunteer, send a message to [email protected].  We’d love to hear from you!

Finally, we’re now taking submissions for our March 2013 prize.  If you have an Awesome Idea that you’d like to submit for consideration, fill out this handy-dandy web form.

Announcing our February 2013 AF-Calgary $1,000 Thursday Venue!

For our final Thousand Dollar Thursday event of 2012, we hosted it in partnership with the Calgary Public Library at their Central location as part of their One Book, One Calgary program.  If you missed it, check out this Awesome story that the Calgary Journal did last year, or our recap of it on Storify.

This month, we’re pleased to announce that we’re teaming up with the Calgary Public Library and the Calgary Public Library Foundation again to throw another one, this time at the Memorial Park Library, located in the heart of Calgary’s Beltline.

Calgary’s Memorial Park Library opened on January 2, 1912 and was Alberta’s first major public library building.  Now over 100 years old, what better way to help kick off year 101 than with showcasing four Awesome Ideas and awarding one of them $1,000 in no-strings-attached cash on the spot?

Like our November 2012 event, a few of our previous submitters will be on hand showcasing some of their Awesome Success (whether they won the $1,000 or not), and we’ll be holding Awesome Hours before and after the event where you can meet some of our Trustees and learn more about the AF movement (as well as sign up if you’re interested in joining Team AF-Calgary as a Trustee or Volunteer), and the library will also be providing some light refreshments as well.

As always, our events are 100% open to the public, so we hope to see you there!

Finally, we’re now accepting submissions for our March 2013 prize.  The application deadline for next month is Sunday, March 10 at 11:59 p.m.  To submit an idea to AF-Calgary for consideration, simply fill out this handy-dandy web form!