Diaspora, Diversity, & Dialogue Art Exhibition

A visual artist living in Vancouver, Canada, Bert Monterona is an artist, educator and cultural worker who specializes in designing, illustrations, painting, murals, sculpture, installations, set as well as props for stage performances and TV shows.  As an artist-educator he has organized art workshops in schools and communities, for skills development, art-as- therapy and peace building. He facilitated art workshops and lecture- presentations for art educators, social workers, artists, fine arts students, art enthusiasts, street children and out of school youth in different places and venues like, University of Western Australia, Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts, Simon Fraser University, University of British Columbia, University of the Philippines, Vargas Museum, Vermont Studio Centre, Leigh Square Community Arts Village, Children’s Rehabilitation Centre and different Communities.

My works of art is a process of examining the future and rediscovering the past to build the present, to envisage complex challenges in order to link between different culture, places, times and events.

The basis of my thought is concerned with the balance of high technology and indigenous life, and the growing rediscovery of the importance of indigenous environment as component and significance to the modern times in order to relate and communicate socio-economic and environmental problems.

My works are strongly influenced by social, cultural, religious, spiritual and political norms. Hence my works, whatever their forms and motives reflect the magical ritualism of my rich indigenous roots.

My ideas and inspirations come from my daily observation of the environment and events and interaction with the different people and culture. But I’m also inspired by things that may seem irrelevant to others as my ideas and energies constantly activated my mind and heart for a creative art work.

I believe that art as a ritual has a healing capacity and the artist as a healer will give valuable contributions to balance the mind for a meaningful future.

— Bert Monterona

Program of Events

Opening Night Reception, September 21st, Friday, 6:30-9:00 p.m. Rm. 256, Chilcotin Boardroom, UBC Irving K. Barber Learning Centre

After a Ribbon Cutting Ceremony – with Dr. Leonora Angeles and IKLBC Assistant Director — at the IKBLC foyer, the evening’s event will include guest speakers Dr. Henry Yu and Alden Habacon, UBC.  Bert Monterona will give an artist’s response as the closing speech to the evening.  Food and light beverages will follow.

The Cross-Cultural Dialogue, October 27th, Saturday, 2:00-5:00 p.m. Closing Night and Art Sale, October 27, Saturday, 5:00-8:00 p.m. Room 261, Peace River Room, Irving K. Barber Learning Centre

The October 27 cross-cultural symposium, pecha-kucha style, brings together artists, community organizers, youth leaders, planners and city residents to address questions about the role of arts, culture and artistic expressions in community capacity-building within and across multi-cultural, multi-ethnic, multi-linguistic, multi-religious diasporic communities, marked by increased internal diversity and interactions with indigenous and settler communities, both old and new. What role do arts and culture play in citizenship building and community development within multicultural cities such as Vancouver? What can the arts, culture and artistic expressions do to engage multicultural communities in inter-cultural dialogues about social justice and sustainability in our cities that aim for greater social cohesion and inclusivity? How do Vancouver’s multi-cultural communities interpret, interrogate and interact with the City’s “green” and “sustainable city” vision and mandate, given these communities’ existing environmental knowledge and previous experiences with environmental agendas? What can the City of Vancouver and other Canadian cities, as well as the arts and community development community do to respond to these multiple voices and values to make our cities even more sustainable, just, inclusive, innovative, and creative?

The events, organized by Migrante BC, Canada-Philippine Solidarity for Human Rights, Multi-cultural Helping House Society, Tulayan, Kensington Community Office of MLA Mable Elmore and UBC Professor Leonora Angeles, are jointly sponsored by the City of Vancouver’s Community and Neighbourhood Arts and Development Grants Program 2012; University of British Columbia Irving K. Barber Learning Centre; Department of Asian Studies; Institute for Asian Research; Institute for Gender, Race, Sexuality and Social Justice; Liu Institute for Global Issues; and the School of Community and Regional Planning.