The Welcoming

The Welcoming

The Welcoming is a series of welcoming-acts observed, collected, and reshaped in Vancouver, BC, by performance students at SFU’s School for the Contemporary Arts. We found small moments of hospitality at our doorsteps and traced the affective force of waving hands: The Key; Open; The Mat; Ahh!; Come in No. 1; The Dog; The Pull; Who?; Come in No. 2… We reflected on our personal experiences of loss during the pandemic—of touch, social connection, our sense of time—and questioned when and how we’d welcome those things back. In questioning what makes a welcoming welcoming, we looked beneath the mat, behind the door, for those ways of being that we might call unwelcoming. What could we learn about hospitality by taking on the inhospitable? What’s revealed in our greetings when we play them rude, sticky, or foul? When we welcome others, we typically start with some kind of acknowledgement of each other: “I see you, come inside”; or, “I don’t see you, you’re unwelcome here.” Through this dance of recognition, we experimented with perceptual modes for feeling out those forms of invitation and reception in our art practices and everyday life.

Video: Mena El Shazly

Project Lead: Ryan Tacata

Artist Bio

The Welcoming Committee consists of performance makers from SFU’s School for the Contemporary Arts. Video: Mena El Shazly; Ryan Tacata, Asst. Prof; Performers: Emma Savic Kallesoe, Rebecca Kabesh, Deborah Koesyonoe, Brittany Martyshuk, Ali McDougall, Marita Michaelis, Michelle Shen, Tamlin Vettere, Samantha Walters, Liam Wilkins, Alexander Zavorotny.