A special issue of Hamilton Arts & Letters (HAL) was dedicated to the work and impact of Cees and Annerie van Gemerden. Hamilton Arts & Letters 9.2 features diverse responses to Cees and Annerie’s art, activism, and legacy, along with a biographical essay featuring photographs by Cees. In his introductory essay, David Froese writes: “We need the work of Cees and Annerie, and the artists of James Street North then and the artists now to give us a way to remember, and to help us move forward wisely as a community during this time of great change. An image, as we have seen many times throughout history, has tremendous power to create communities, give them direction, and hold them together in common cause.”

You can read the issue and see the images on the HAL website: https://samizdatpress.typepad.com/hal_magazine_issue_nine2/hal-magazine-issue-nine2-cover-index.html.

About Cees and Annerie van Gemerden

In his article on Cees and Annerie van Gemerden in The Hamilton Spectator, Jeff Mahoney extends an invitation to the reader:

Think of them next time you’re at the harbourfront, as you admire the shimmery broadloom of water, the contour of the shore, the pageant of sailboats, the people on the trails, as you listen to water lapping against the hull of the Haida, the cries of water birds. It wasn’t always thus.

As artists and longtime residents of Hamilton, Cees and Annerie van Gemerden have brought together activism and art in their works over the years. For example, their exhibition called NoTrespassing–More Power Anyone? captures the trails folks made to the Hamilton waterfront in the ’80s when fences prevented folks from going near the water–the independent and quiet movements of citizens making their way to the water. More importantly, the exhibition also documented the toxic waste was that was dumped in Hamilton’s harbour.

In another series called Red Hill, Ceese and Annerie turned their attention to the building of an expressway in the Red Hill Valley, a site declared sacred by Haudenosaunee people.

These are a couple examples of how they have focused their attention on a particular aspect of the land our relationship with it in their works.

Check out Cees and Annerie’s website to see their work.

Below are some photos from the event honouring Cees and Annerie and the launch of the special issue of HAL. Click on the image to enlarge.