The Stories Were Not Told

Artful Reading

Semchuk highlights Canada’s internment operations during the First World War, in which many immigrants from the Austro-Hungarian Empire, Germany, and the Ottoman Empire were unjustly imprisoned as enemy aliens.

Semchuk describes how lives and society have been shaped by acts of legislated racism and helps people understand the cross-cultural and intergenerational consequences of Canada’s first internment camps.

The Stories Were Not Told: Canada’s First World War Internment Camps by Sandra Semchuk
hosted by Sandra Semchuk
Space is limited and registration is required. E-mail to register.
To cover light refreshments for the group, the cost to attend is $10 + admission or membership.

About the talk

Remai Modern's book discussion program brings together two things we love: great art and literature! Led by different guest hosts and moderated by Robin Adair, participants are invited to discuss the selected book in connection to artworks on view. Titles are available from Remai Modern's Art & Design Store.

Sandra Semchuk Biography 

Sandra Semchuk asks us the question: what leads towards deeper recognitions across generations, cultures and species? Photographer and scholar, Semchuk is a second generation Ukrainian Canadian who was a Governor General Award recipient in Visual and Media Arts (2018). Semchuk has focussed her photographic and video work on relationships between herself, her family, and her community. In 1975, she exhibited photos of the people in her hometown, Meadow Lake, Saskatchewan, on main street where everyone from the community could stop and discuss them. She is a co-founder of The Photographers Gallery in Saskatoon, taught at Emily Carr University in Vancouver for three decades and has exhibited nationally and internationally. She collaborated with her late husband James Nicholas, Cree writer and orator, on photographic, text and video works to disrupt myths that have shaped settler relations to First Nations. A major exhibition of these collaborations will be shown at the Norman McKenzie Art Gallery in Regina, Saskatchewan in 2020. Recent photographic and video works engage the wider-than-human—the forest---and the overtone singing of Jerry DesVoignes to provide a larger context for local and global human narratives. Her artist’s book, The Stories Were Not Told, Canada’s First World War Internment Camps (U of Alberta Press, 2018)) creates a space for internees and descendants to tell their stories. This book considers legislated racism and the intergenerational consequences of Canada’s first internment camps when so many from the Austro-Hungarian, German and Ottoman Empires were interned. Most were Ukrainians.


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102 Spadina Crescent East
Saskatoon SK S7K 0L3