Monk’s show gets rave review

The Toronto Star’s arts reviewer raved about curator Philip Monk’s debut show, What It Feels Like for a Girl, at the Art Gallery of York University (AGYU). Monk has taught the public new ways to think about seeing, said the Dec. 6 article. The new exhibition, the Star said, “could be called the girlie-girlie show he wasn’t allowed to do at the Power Plant, so he took it on the road, even if that meant heading all the way up Keele St., where a downtown kind of guy like Philip Monk generally isn’t found.”

Monk told the Star that “even though I have a smaller space, my projects are going to be just as ambitious.” The Star added the AGYU is made to seem about as big as all outdoors in showing Fiona Smyth’s “grrrl power” mural, Spinnbarkeit And The Science of Elasticity, which depicts an entire world of women stretched out like a mountain range. Monk aims to engage York’s student population more than the gallery has in the past, said the Star, and if What It Feels Like for a Girl doesn’t do it, nothing will. As well, he wants to strengthen the gallery’s connection to the downtown art core. With York’s plans to build a new gallery, scheduled to open in 2005, he can see the all-new AGYU becoming a space “with a recognizable profile, something that’s a real art gallery, that’s taken seriously.”

Lawee responds on campus censoring 

In a continuing letters-to-the-editor exchange in the National Post, York humanities Professor Eric Lawee, Faculty of Arts, responded to a letter from a University of Toronto psychology professor on Lawee’s earlier criticism of the U of T’s position on a pro-Palestinian conference on campus. “Professor John Furedy’s censure of my willingness to censor advocates of terrorism on campus finds its response in recent news that Hamas recruited a former Canadian university student to carry out attacks on Jewish and Israeli targets in Canada and the United States,” said Lawee in his letter Dec. 6. “If and when such attacks occur, and student groups insist on their rights to hold ‘conferences’ where they voice support for the perpetrators of the attacks, not to mention encouraging more of their ilk, will Prof. Furedy still hold that ‘all views are entitled to consideration’?

“I’m all for handling ‘not only mistaken but immoral’ positions by ‘censuring rather than trying to censor them’,” wrote Lawee. “But in the case of the advocacy of terrorism, the consequences of this approach are such that some of us are likely to be doing the censuring from six feet under, at which distance our own voices may not be heard.” 

Transit improvements to York in the works

York Region’s planning commissioner, Bryan Tuckey, said in the Era Banner Dec. 6 that through a new Quick Start program, transit help is on the way for the densely-populated region. And York University, which draws a large number of students from York Region, will benefit. For example, there will be a dedicated fleet of buses on four corridors, improvements to 165 intersections, plus something called “queue-jumping technology” which Tuckey said will help speed up bus traffic coming to York. This technology is scheduled to begin in September 2004, and will enable buses on certain routes to proceed or turn before other traffic. At Keele St. and Highway 7, for example, where turning buses can be stuck for two or three light-cycles, this could save commuters five minutes on their way to York University, said the Banner. This entire $150-million program will be implemented over the next three years, with funding split between York Region, the province and the federal government.

On Air

  • York’s Osgoode Hall Law School Professor Alan Young spoke about the status of marijuana in Canada, on CBC News Dec. 7.