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Hot Art Round-Up: Apr 26-28



The 2019 Calgary Expo POW! Parade of Wonders!
Calgary Comic and Entertainment Expo, 10:30 – noon

Solo!! The Graeme Shaw Show!
Webster Galleries, Friday 4 – 8 pm, Saturday live painting 11 am – 4 pm

Traversing the line, with no fixed point / Briana Palmer
Alberta Printmakers, 7 – 9 pm



Spring Arts & Crafts Sale
Scenic Acres Community Centre, 10 am – 3 pm

Annual Spring Art Exhibition & Sale
Bridgeland Riverside Community Association, 10 am – 4 pm

Calyx Distinctive Arts Spring Event
1101 2 St NW, Saturday and Sunday 10 am – 4 pm

Exhibition Reception and Artist Talk
Alberta Craft Gallery, 2 – 4 pm

Artist Trading Cards Swap
TRUCK Contemporary Art in Calgary, 5 – 6:30 pm



PPC Annual Art Show and Sale
Park96, noon – 4 pm

Cinematic Sundays: Kusama : Infinity
Glenbow Museum, 1 – 3 pm (ticketed)

Cannabis Laws in Edmonton

Canada made headlines last year when recreational cannabis was legalized across the country on October 17, 2018. But just like with alcohol and tobacco, there are laws and regulations regarding its consumption.

The federally legislated Cannabis Act outlines the legal amount of cannabis that an adult may possess, share, purchase, and grow. However, if you are travelling within Canada, you are responsible to learn the laws of the provinces, territories, and even the individual municipalities you will be visiting. Individual municipalities (Edmonton, St. Albert, Sherwood Park, etc.) may create additional restrictions on top of provincial and federal legislations.

— In Alberta, you must be 18+ to use and/or purchase cannabis.
— You may purchase cannabis from provincially- and federally-licensed retailers only.
— In Edmonton, you may consume cannabis in designated cannabis consumption areas, and in some parks and trails.
— The City of Edmonton website includes maps of permitted smoking areas along Whyte Avenue and Jasper Avenue.

Stay Up to Date

For the most current and accurate information, visit these official websites.

City of Edmonton
City of St. Albert
Strathcona County (Sherwood Park)

Government of Alberta

Government of Canada

Hot Art Round-Up: Apr 18 – 20



Stamp It! Members Show and Sale
Alberta Printmakers, through April 20: 11 am – 4 pm

Launchpad 2.0
Indefinite Arts Centre, Festival Hall: 5 – 7 pm

RAW: Calgary presents IMPACT
Marquee Beer Market & Stage: 7 pm – midnight (ticketed)

Hazel Eckert / Soft Focus Reception & Artist Talk
Royal Canadian Legion #1, 7 – 9 pm


New Craft Coalition Spring Show + Sale
The Commons Calgary, Friday 4 – 9 pm, Saturday 10 am – 6 pm


Opening Reception: 17th Annual Juried Members Show
Leighton Art Centre, 2 – 4 pm

420 on 4/20 Art Social
New Motion Gallery, 3:30 – 7 pm

A O H I T W A M B T R U : Teresa Tam
Stride Gallery, 4:30 – 5:30 pm

Hot Art Round-Up: Apr 11 – 13



Jake Joy: At the Heart of It
Blackboard Gallery, cSPACE: 5 – 8 pm

Spotlight YYC – Artist Reception with Jill Allan
Alberta Craft Gallery, cSPACE: 5 – 8 pm

University of Calgary’s Department of Art PUSH 2019 Exhibition Closing Reception

Women at the Crossroads of Canada
Lougheed House, 5:30 – 6:30 pm and 7 – 8 pm (ticketed)

Mètamorphe: Hear/d Residency Exhibition
Alberta University of the Arts, 6 – 8 pm

Ana Villanueva – MNG LRT Space Reception
Marion Nicoll Gallery, 6 – 8 pm

Bad Visions from Cyberspace – MNG Main Space Reception
Marion Nicoll Gallery, 6 – 8 pm

Salon Series: Meryl McMaster
Glenbow Museum, 7 – 9 pm (ticketed)


A O H I T W A M B T R U : Teresa Tam
Stride Gallery, April 12 – May 24

Live Art Auction and Preview
Roderick Mah Centre for Continuous Learning
April 12 – 14 

Calgary Night Market
Eau Claire Market, 5 – 11 pm

Bowness Community Hall: Friday 5 – 9 pm, Saturday 10 am – 4 pm

Action! Adventure! Art!
New Motion Gallery, 6 – 9 pm

Julie Beugin: Soft Obstacles
VivianeArt, opening reception 6 – 9 pm


Little Modern Market’s West Edition
ATCO Park, 9:30 am – 4:30 pm

CCAG Spring Show & Sale
Montgomery Community Association, 10 am – 4 pm

Calgary Artists’ Society Spring Art Show and Sale
Parkdale United Church, 10 am – 4 pm

Window Sun, New Paintings by Steve Coffey
The Collectors’ Gallery of Art, 1 – 5 pm

Ashes In Glass – Calgary Ash Collection
cSPACE, 1:15 – 4:15 pm

What you need to know about the Calgary Comic & Entertainment Expo



Here are some tips on how to prep for the Calgary Comic & Entertainment Expo, from eating waffles with a distinct dark side to strutting your stuff in the parade.


Whether you want to terrify your fellow Calgary Expo fans with a Night King mask or lighten the mood in Deadpool’s skin-tight outfit, The Costume Shoppe has you covered with a large selection of themed costumes. Don’s Hobby Shop is where to go for special effects make-up to bring out your inner orc, or dress up like a demogorgon in honour of Stranger Things actor David Harbour’s appearance at the expo.


Do your part to destroy the Death Star with fork and knife at Yellow Door Bistro. Their Death Star waffle swings into orbit for Calgary Expo and returns for “May the Fourth Be With You” on May 4th.


If you’ve ever wanted to see the Sailor Scouts, Chewbacca and Beetlejuice strolling together, the POW! Parade of Wonders is for you. At this kick-off event to Calgary Expo, thousands of Calgarians swagger down Stephen Avenue in their costumed best.

Fourteen years ago, the Calgary Comic & Entertainment Expo began with a respectable 3,000 attendees. Numbers held steady for a couple years, and then they started to climb — drastically. This year from April 25 – 28, the Calgary Expo is expected to bring in around 100,000 fans to celebrate their love of sci-fi, fantasy, horror and all things pop culture.

The annual convention features celebrity guests, panel discussions on pop culture topics and hundreds of exhibitors selling everything from rare and vintage collectibles to comics, memorabilia, themed merchandise and original works of art.

Yelaina May, a local cosplayer who has created an impressive arsenal of costumes, began cosplaying after she attended the expo for the first time.

“Calgary Expo will always hold a special place in my heart,” she says. “It is what started my hobby and something I look forward to every year.”

For the uninitiated, “cosplay” is short for costume play. It’s a mash-up of performance and visual arts in which participants — known as cosplayers — wear clothing and accessories to represent a specific character, often from pop culture.

Many cosplayers spend months working on elaborate outfits to show them off at events like Calgary Expo, which attracts cosplayers of all types and skill levels.

“There are always amazing, master level cosplayers, the people that do it just for fun and the joy of creation, the people that are just starting and figuring out what they are into,” May says.

If you’re looking to get into the cosplay game, May has some advice — above all, have fun and enjoy yourself.

Photo by Yelaina May Cosplay.

“Find a character you love and just go for it! Lots of people overthink everything. You will learn by making mistakes, so don’t expect to make every piece perfectly the first time. I still, after five years, remake at least one part of every costume. Or, if you aren’t a crafty person, there is no shame in buying a costume. If it’s a character you are passionate about, it will make all the struggles of building it worth it. You will find someone else who loves that character as much as you and it will be awesome.”

Speaking of characters, expect to see some big names from movies and television at the Calgary Expo. Back to the Future fans will be psyched — Michael J. Fox, Christopher Lloyd, Lea Thompson, Tom Wilson and James Tolkan are scheduled for appearances. You can also rub elbows with Sean Astin of Lord of the Rings and Baywatch babe Pamela Anderson, among others.

Don’t forget to keep an eye out for May, who will be cosplaying Aloy from the video game Horizon Zero Dawn, Wonder Woman from the new movies, and Sadie Adler from the video game Red Dead Redemption 2. She says the thing she’s most looking forward to is just being there.

“There is something about the atmosphere of being around a bunch of like-minded people looking at awesome geeky things or watching cool panels that nothing else can beat,” May says. “It is the most exhausting weekend of my year, but also my favourite!”

Hot Art Round-Up: Apr 4 – 7



MFA in Craft Media Thesis Exhibition
Illingworth Kerr Gallery, Alberta University of the Arts: 5 – 8 pm

Free First Thursday Nights
Glenbow Museum, 5 – 9 pm

Large Works
Artpoint Gallery opening reception 5 – 9 pm



Make It Calgary! Apr 5-7
Deerfoot City, Friday 11am-9pm, Saturday 10am-6pm, Sunday 11am-5pm

Second Chance Art Sale
Rotary Club of Calgary Heritage Park, St Peter’s Anglican Church:
Friday 4 – 8 pm, Saturday 9 am – 4 pm

Nvrlnd Open House & Studio Sale
Nvrlnd.yyc, 5 – 9 pm

Bob Pike, Connie Pike & Denise Clarke: Iterations in III Acts
Ruberto Ostberg Gallery, Opening Receptions: Friday, 5-9 pm & Saturday, 2-5pm

Lyla Rye / Abide Artist Talk,
7 pm at Emmedia
TRUCK Contemporary Art in Calgary, opening reception 8 – 11 pm

Tsēmā Igharas: Black Gold
Untitled Art Society, 7 – 11 pm

Varvara & Mar : Chameleon
New Gallery, opening reception 8 pm – midnight



Dalhousie Art Show and Sale
Calgary Sketch Club, 10 am – 4pm

Spring Art Show
Southern Alberta Art Alliance, 10 am – 4 pm

YYC Alternative Market at ICA Hall
Inglewood Community Hall, 10 am – 4 pm

Janet B. Armstrong: painting in the gallery
Webster Galleries, 11 am – 4 pm

John Lennard: Footprints
Masters Gallery Ltd, opening reception 5 – 7 pm



Art Calgary at the Central Library
Calgary Central Library, 1 – 3 pm

15 things to do in Calgary in April 2019


On April 5, the Tonettes and Grady Harrell perform classic songs by The Supremes, Marvin Gaye and many more.

See these intraprovincial NHL rivals duke it out on the ice for fame and glory on April 6.

A treasury of famous arias tells the story of Rigoletto, a court jester who tries and fails to protect his naïve daughter from the lecherous Duke of Mantua. He hires an assassin to murder the Duke but, predictably, his plans are derailed. The fast-paced tale of honour and revenge, performed by Calgary Opera, is packed with drama and set to some of Giuseppe Verdi’s most-loved music. Playing select dates from April 6 – 12.

Graphic by Trudie Lee Photography.

The British comedienne hits the stage with hilarious and unapologetically filthy stand-up from April 12 – 13.

The legendary band is touring their new 50-song collection featuring half a century of hits, and will be playing in Calgary on April 15.

For ages six and up, this stage performance tells the tale of two brothers on a mysterious island. Playing from April 19 – May 5.

Hear the legend of the Easter bunny, hunt for items, pot a plant to take home, and don’t forget to visit the farmyard animals — Butterfield Acres is home to piglets, donkeys, chicks, goats, bunnies and more. Kids can even take a ride on a friendly pony. Select dates in April; tickets must be purchased in advance.

Young Billy dreams of trading his boxing gloves for ballet slippers, but his working-class father doesn’t understand his passion for dance. The Tony Award-winning musical is set to music by Elton John and choreographed by former Alberta Ballet principal dancer Yukichi Hattori. Playing select dates from April 9 – May 12. 

Graphic by Andrea Ucini.

The National Music Centre’s Alberta Spotlight on April 18 is focused on The Shiverettes, a four-piece punk rock group hailing from Calgary. Expect their performance to come equipped with gnarly riffs, snotty attitude, brash honesty and a healthy dose of feminism.

Calgary’s “psychedelic dream pop” band Future Womb is having an album release party on April 19. See them rock out at The Palomino with local band Pancake, along with Peach Pyramid from Victoria, BC.

From April 19 – 20, the Calgary Zoo’s annual Easter event celebrates spring with arts, crafts, games, face painting and a visit from the Easter bunny. After the Easter festivities, pay a visit to the animals in their enclosures, such as Destination Africa, Penguin Plunge, Canadian Wilds and Panda Passage.

Enjoy the atmosphere of the elegant Famous 5 Centre of Canadian Women at Heritage Park, a replica of suffragette Nellie McClung’s home, while dining on a delicious afternoon tea. The service includes a tray of finger sandwiches and treats along with freshly brewed tea or lemonade. From April 19 – 22.

Photo courtesy Heritage Park.

This American blues guitarist and singer has influenced many of the greats, including Clapton and Hendrix, and is playing in Calgary on April 20.

Stunning natural history footage from National Geographic is paired with an original symphony performed live on April 25.

Love? Marriage? Men? Princess Ida is not interested. She has sequestered herself in a women’s university and is ready to fight any suitors who happen to come calling. One of Gilbert and Sullivan’s less known works, this comic opera performed by Morpheus Theatre is full of intelligent lyrics, witty commentary, danger and, of course, humour. Playing from April 26 – May 11.

How Deepwater Farms uses aquaponics to bring fresh greens and fish to Calgary


Kale growing in Deepwater Farms’ industrial warehouse. Photo courtesy Deepwater Farms.

Heavy, humid air greets you like a wall when walking through the threshold of Deepwater Farms’ industrial warehouse — but it’s a comforting barrier, much like walking into a warm hotel lobby after a long, cold day’s travel.

Settled in the Calgary’s southeast, the city’s first and largest aquaponics farm rings with the sounds of flowing water and the buzz of people milling around, inspecting rows of sprouting greens and taking calls from local chefs.

In just over a year, Deepwater Farms has turned this 10,000-square-foot concrete building into a bright urban farm. Melding aquaculture (raising fish) and hydroponics (growing plants without soil), they have created a year-round resource for produce and seafood that can be difficult to obtain fresh in Calgary due to terrain and climate.

The massive warehouse is filled with rows upon rows of fresh greens, growing on top of water and under bright LED lights. The water they float on is also filled with fertilizing nutrients that have been filtered from the tanks where 20,000 deep water sea bass are housed at the other end of the room.

“We know there’s a hunger for locally grown food,” said Paul Shumlich, founder and CEO of Deepwater Farms. “But we don’t have a lot of year-round growers in the area, and no one else is specializing in leafy greens or fish.”

Racks of produce growing in the warehouse. Photo courtesy Deepwater Farms.

Although Deepwater Farms has been selling consistently since February of 2018, the idea has been a five-year-long labour of love for Shumlich. In 2014 he was window-cleaning to put himself through his entrepreneurship studies at Mount Royal University (MRU), but he knew he wanted to put his time and energy “into something more meaningful.”

“I had literally just stumbled across the subject of aquaponics on the internet,” he continued. “Food production has always been really important to me, and the idea of being able to turn the fish waste into something reusable really spoke to me.”

Joining up with a few other like-minded friends, Shumlich tested the idea out in his backyard as a way to prove to himself that fish and plants can work in harmony. They eventually moved into a greenhouse space at MRU, and then into a garage where Shumlich even lived for a while to keep his eye on the system.

“From there, we had a model that we were confident would work, and were confident we had a market,” he said. “And we were right.”

Currently, Deepwater Farms harvests and delivers the matured sea bass and 500 kilograms of kale and arugula every week to farmers’ markets, distributors and restaurants including Una Pizza, Shokunin, Teatro and Model Milk. One of the first restaurants to adopt Deepwater Farms was Hotel Arts’ Yellow Door Bistro, who were already on board before production even began.

“As soon as production started, we started with their baby kale,” said Quinn Staple, executive chef at Hotel Arts Group. “It’s a product that you don’t usually get in Calgary, especially in the winter. You can buy kale or arugula, sure, but it’s generally all from California or Mexico, so they’ve been trimmed for who-knows-how-long before we get it. Then, it comes in this gas bag so when you finally open it, it’s lifeless and flaccid and doesn’t have much flavour. But these (greens from Deepwater Farms) are so fresh and crisp — they have zip.”

Yellow Door Bistro makes use of Deepwater Farms produce on their menu items. Photo courtesy Yellow Door Bistro.

Yellow Door Bistro hasn’t incorporated the sea bass on their menu just yet, but Staple says he plans to bring it in once production ramps up in the coming months. With Alberta being landlocked, and regulations placed on native fish, he said it’s particularly difficult to serve and sell fresh fish in a restaurant, even for abundant northern species like rainbow trout.

“There’s almost no fresh seafood in Alberta,” he said. “We don’t have that luxury. And so for us to say that we have a nice, local product? That’s something we can stand behind.”

The sea bass are imported as “fingerlings” (juvenile fish) from Australia, and raised in enormous tanks inside of Deepwater Farms. Each tank houses fish at different ages and sizes as they mature, usually reaching the sellable weight of one or two pounds after 10 months.

The tanks are all self-cleaning and drain the waste into a filter to break it down into ions and minerals for fertilizer. Aquaculture manager Ben Matthews says they completely use all of the waste, so they never need to use artificial fertilizer or soil for their produce.

“It’s a very sustainable system, and our fish are certified Ocean Wise,” said Matthews. “Most fish you eat in Alberta is not killed on the same day you eat it, but that’s how we want to be different: we want to be fresh.”

Despite already being the first and largest commercial aquaponics facility in Calgary, Shumlich says he plans to at least double production by the end of 2019. They don’t want to grow too fast, he cautioned, saying that maintaining their high quality is their strength, but they still want to be disruptive and get their products out on a massive scale.

“It’s been five years, so this didn’t happen overnight,” Shumlich continued. “But we’ve come a long way and we’re always looking forward to a better future.”

He still describes Deepwater Farms as a prototype, because they continue to redesign their system and keep making it better — he even calls their water and waste fertilization system their “secret recipe.” And, as the province is looking to diversify, Shumlich said he wanted to take the opportunity to help provide job opportunities in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. He knows Calgarians crave local food, and although it was a challenge to find a way to keep producing greens year-round in a city where snow can fall any time between September and May, he and his team were determined to find a way.

“‘Organic’ is a label, but ‘local’ is a position,” he said. “You can’t fake local, and it implies that it’s farmed and raised ethically and responsibly. You want to know the person who’s growing it, and you want to support them. That’s what we’re building here.”

Hot Art Round-Up: Mar 28 – 30



Nine Lives: Changing Notions of Femininity Through Time
Lougheed House, March 28 – April 28

Nine Lives exhibit launch with Big Kitty Crew: Fun, Fashion, Fem
Lougheed House, 5:30 – 9 pm

Open Studio with Nina Morris
Calgary Allied Arts Foundation, cSPACE: 5 – 8 pm

2019 AUArts SA Spring Show + Sale | First Night Fundraiser
Alberta University of the Arts, 5 – 9 pm

Paint Party , Art by MWild
Motion Gallery, 7 – 9 pm

Publication Launch & Artist Talk | Orphan Well Adoption Agency
TRUCK Contemporary Art in Calgary, 7 – 9 pm

2 Person Exhibition of work by Perry Adamuik and Bryce Krynski
New Edward Gallery, March 28 – March 30 (Thurs –Fri :7 – 10 pm, Sat: 2 – 6 pm)

OverZealous / live at the Ivan Gallery
Ivan Gallery, Alberta University of the Arts, 7:30 – 8:30 pm



2019 AUArts SA Spring Show + Sale
Alberta University of the Arts: Friday noon – 7 pm, Saturday noon – 4 pm

Calgary Night Market
Eau Claire Market, 5 – 11 pm

Whispers of the Woods – An Earth Art Exhibit
The INKubator- Art, Science and Socialpreneurial Playground (Northland Village Mall)Fri, March 29 (7-10pm) – Sat, March 30 and Sun, March 31 (11am – 5pm)

The Softest Hard
Jarvis Hall Gallery, 7 – 9 pm



Marketspot Pop-Up Shop Grand Opening
MarketSpot YYC, Chinook Mall: noon – 4 pm

Alberta Society of Artists: Nocturn
Southern Jubilee Auditorium, reception 1 – 3

Trade Swap Meet
Artist Trading Cards, TRUCK Contemporary Art in Calgary: 5 – 7 pm

HY DRA TION vol 10: Liquidate Your ASSets
TRUCK Contemporary Art in Calgary: 9 pm – 2:30 am

Hot Art Round-Up: Mar 21 – 24



Kelly McElrea Solo Show
Dandelion Gallery, March 21 – May 19

Raices (Roots) Art Exhibition Open House
INTI Designs Studios & Gallery, 6 – 10 pm


Artist Talk with Byron Rich
University of Calgary Department of Art, 10 am – 11:30 am

Project Grant Program Information Sessions
New Central Library, 10 am – noon

A Conversation with Mark Dicey
Heffel Fine Art Auction House, 5 – 7 pm

Cl*st*r F*ck Group Show
NVRLND, Friday 6 – 10 pm, Saturday noon – 6 pm

LET’S STAY IN TOUCH, TRUCK’s annual postcard fundraiser
TRUCK Contemporary Art in Calgary, 7 – 10 pm

Give a F*ck
Payton G Design, Koi: 10 pm – midnight


CRTA (Calgary Retired Teachers) Art Show and Sale
St. Peter’s Anglican Church, 10 am – 4 pm

Robert Pierce: Hide and Seek
Christine Klassen Gallery, 1 – 4 pm

Blake Senini – Dear Nevermore:
Herringer Kiss Gallery, 2 – 5 pm

Tamara Lee-Anne Cardinal: Mekinawewin, to give a gift
Untitled Art Society, 2 – 5 pm

Grown-Up Shopping Night
Motion Gallery, 7 – 10 pm

Radiant and Radical: The Soul of Black Art in Mohkinstsis
cSPACE, 7:30 – 9:30 pm


Cinematic Sundays: Westwood: Punk, Icon, Activist
Glenbow Museum, 1 – 3 pm

Hot Art Round-Up: Mar 14 – 16



Tracy Proctor’s Closing Reception of Waxing Poetic
Blackboard Gallery, 5 – 8 pm

Chasing the Mountains: A Range of Work
Blackboard Gallery, 5 – 8 pm

Spotlight YYC- Artist Reception with Judy Sysak
Alberta Craft Gallery, cSPACE: 5 – 8 pm

Light Night: An Interactive Community Event in Support of CWES
Más Studios, Hot Neon Productions: 5 – 8 pm

Robyn Mah – Tensions
Marion Nicoll Gallery, 6 – 8 pm

Dirty Douks – Spirrrit Wrrrestlerrrs
Marion Nicoll Gallery, 6 – 8 pm



The 13th Annual HORSE SHOW
Alberta University of the Arts, 6 – 8:30 pm

Crescent Moon Party
Crescent Heights Community Association, 7 – 9:30 pm



Puppet Pop-Up: Aliens
Calgary Central Library, 12:30 4:30 pm

Animovies! Co-produced with CAOS & Emmedia
Calgary Central Library, 4:30 – 5:30 pm

Transforming Odds & Ends
The Alberta Society of Artists. HUB @ 302: reception 1 – 3 pm

Barbara Ballachey: Meditation on Abstraction
The Edge Gallery, opening reception 1 – 4 pm

Cathy Daley: Caress and Susannah Montague: Lucid Dreams
Newzones, opening reception 2 – 4 pm

Art Auction Fundraiser
cSPACE, 5 – 10:30 pm

3 new books from Calgary writers




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A post shared by Ryan Bourquin aka Big Bad Dad (@bigbaddadbook) on

Two years ago when Ryan Bourquin sat down to write a story with his daughter, Winnie, on a snowy afternoon in Calgary, he didn’t know the story would become the basis for his first published book.

Winnie, who was only four at the time, wanted to write about how much she loves painting nails, playing dress-up and having tea parties with her dad — a tattooed, weightlifting, six-foot-four chef.

“We were talking about how her friends were a little bit afraid of me, and she didn’t understand why, because I do all this stuff with her,” Bourquin says. “People who see me from the outside might not think that I’m at home playing dress-up with my daughter.”

He wanted to publish one copy of the short story to gift to Winnie for Christmas, but after showing the handwritten copy to an editor friend, he saw its potential and suggested Bourquin submit it to publishing houses.

After figuring out how to format a manuscript, find a literary agent and all the other prep required to submit a book to publishing houses, he landed a book deal for Big Bad Dad earlier this year. The illustrated book for kids shows readers the man behind the tattoos is a devoted father willing to play in princess dresses with his daughter, proving you should never judge a book by its cover.

“I’ve had a lot of dads reach out to me about the book,” Bourquin says. “It’s been a pretty cool adventure so far.”



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A post shared by VIVEK SHRAYA 🆚 (@vivekshraya) on

Vivek Shraya is a multi-disciplinary artist based in Calgary who creates music, poetry, visual art, film and fiction. Her new book I’m Afraid of Men is part memoir, part manifesto and takes us through Shraya’s life and how she’s been negatively impacted by gender norms.

She charts the fear of men she’s felt throughout her entire life, describing the acts of cruelty inflicted on her when expressing femininity as a young boy, to the panic she now feels in public spaces as a trans woman, and alarm at not appearing “feminine enough” to society.

The book challenges dominant ideas about race, gender and identity and ultimately invites us to embrace our differences and envision a world where gender creativity is celebrated instead of punished, freeing all of us to live without fear.

It’s a notebook-sized novel so you’ll be able to finish it relatively quickly, but its message will stay with you long after the last page.



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A post shared by Kevin Kent (@knife.nerd) on

This book is not only an education on why you should nerd out on Japanese knives (like author Kevin Kent does), but also an ode to the art of knifemaking — Kent and photographer Visti Kjar captured a behind-the-scenes look at the forges of Japanese blacksmiths who craft these super-sharp knives.

Kent is the “knifenerd” behind Knifewear, which sells Japanese knives and accessories. He discovered the knives while working as a sous-chef in London, England. Back in Canada he sold them to chefs out of a backpack before opening the storefront in 2008.

Inside The Knifenerd Guide to Japanese Knives you’ll find answers to the top 50 questions asked by customers at the shop, so you can take the expert knife knowledge home with you.