café for contemporary art

News from Montréal!

Posted in Coffee, posts by Tim, Recent Complicities by Tim on September 25, 2009

Hey guys – long time no talk!

Just thought I’d post a little blurb about what’s been going on out here in Québec. Lots of stuff, but first:
Photo 6

Nooooooo!!!!!! I’M OUT OF COFFEE!!!!!! (more…)

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“The Solo Sessions” – aka Acoustic Night Returns!

Posted in CCA North Vancouver, music, posts by Tim by Tim on August 7, 2009
The Solo Sessions

Big news, people! And I mean Big….after a long 3 weeks with no live music, Acoustic Night is mounting a fierce comeback, with a snappy new name: The Solo Sessions.

This Saturday, between 7 and 9pm, come down to cafca to catch some of Vancouver’s hottest up-and-coming artists! We have eight extremely talented musicians lined up to play, plus some surprise special guests! I don’t know about you but the special guests really make me curious….I’m working, so I’ll be there – will you?

The best part of the event: it’s completely FREE! No cover charge. Now there’s really no excuse not to come out! We’re right by the seabus, close to all kinds of transportation; we have delicious food; and our coffee has been known to change lives! Factor in live, ridiculously awesome, free music and great people….you don’t have to be a rocket scientist to do the math.

So to sum up:

  • FREE live music
  • some of Vancouver’s hottest artists
  • AWESOME coffee
  • AWESOME food
  • AWESOME people

Now the only question left is how many people will you bring along?

See you there!

LOL,

Tim

PS – this night is going to be the HUGE, so if you want good seats – come early!

Acoustic Night Numero Deux! 4 July

Posted in music, posts by Tim by Tim on July 11, 2009

Last Saturday was our second Acoustic Night – we had three performers. First up was Doug Gordon, a new performer full of charisma and smiles. He played mainly covers, and gave us a little preview of what Tony Farese will be playing tonight! Next were The Voltophonix, composed of Brandon and Tak. They play instrumental rock (and do it very well). Besides wowing us with the cool name, the two guitarists brought a laid-back, chill sound to the café. We were glad to have them and hopefully we’ll see them back again.

Last, but certainly not least, was Jeremy Hanlon (his father lent us the PA for our first show). Jeremy plays guitar and has been singing for quite awhile. He’s a student at Creativ Music, over by Park and Tilford. Jeremy has a great voice and character aplenty. He’s a good friend of mine and is, among other things, completely unable to cover a song without changing it. His cover of Britney Spear’s “One More Time” had the audience coincidentally roaring with laughter and tapping their feet. He also played “Kill the Zombies”, a song that has taken the internet by storm and was a fan favourite.

Most unfortunately, my camera’s battery wasn’t up to taking videos, so all I have are pictures. On the brighter side, Brandon and Tak brought along an audio-recorder for the show, so I have most of the show recorded and I’ll post the audio, along with the pictures, as soon as I can.

Speaking of music, don’t forget that we have another show tonight! Playing is Very Nice Treehouse, composed of Holly (our resident Kiwi) and her fiancé Scott, along with Tony Farese. The show runs 7-9, and we’re open till 10. See you there!

LOL,

Tim

PS – my camera’s battery is ready to go for tonight, so there will be video aplenty!

Tasting @ Crema

Posted in Coffee, posts by Tim by Tim on July 4, 2009

Although I’ve been an aspiring coffee geek for about a year and a half now, I’ve never had the opportunity to attend a tasting. I’ve had plenty of straight espressi and a handful of french press/Clover coffees, but I’ve never been able to taste a group of fine coffees consecutively. Last night, at Café Crema in West Vancouver, I had that opportunity.

It was a blind tasting of 12 different single-origin coffees, all roasted by roasters in or around Portland, Oregon. Brent Fortune, owner of a café also called Crema in Portland, brought with him a dufflebag PACKED with coffees to sample. We tasted the coffees in two blind rounds; 5 brewed and one as espresso each round. At the end of each round we compared notes on what we tasted, then listened raptly as the origin, variety, and roaster were revealed.

One of the great things about tasting is that there is no “wrong” answer. Taste descriptors ranged from “blueberry” to “fruit by the foot” to “stumpy”, and even “mud puddle with peppa’ “. I think last night really helped me develop my palate further – that and I gained so much respect for the roasters who have the strength of tastebud to cup 50 or even 100 coffees in a single day.

However, the best part of the night for me was meeting other coffee geeks and getting to chat with them. Brent, besides owning a café, also trains judges for the WBC. Other faces included Troy (Elysian and a premier café in Edmonton), the owner of the new Momento Coffeehouse (website here) in Downtown Vancouver, the man behind the scenes at Elysian, and many more. Sorry to all the others and the last two – I’m horrible with names. There was so much knowledge concentrated in that space and being able to access it was very special.

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Acoustic Night – Pe+Adam+Marek, Jess Perkins

Posted in music, posts by Tim by Tim on June 30, 2009

On Saturday, cafca had its first-ever Acoustic Night! The show went very well…we sold so much earl grey tea that we ran out of teacup sets. We started selling it in to-go cups – that worked until we ran out of the teabag-things. After that it was free upgrades to a pot for all!

The show itself was full of talent. Performing were Pe + Adam + Marek, a very talented acoustic rock trio, and Jessica Perkins, who wowed us with her voice and her smile. Up first was Jess – she and her band (I’d tell you their name but it changes constantly) performed at CityFest and brought the house down…the show was outside, but the metaphor stands regardles. I’ve never seen such stage presence and energy from a group as young as theirs. Jess brought similar energy and presence to cafca. Included in her setlist were Sixpence None the Richer’s “Kiss Me”, and three great originals, two of which are here: “The Backroad”, and “Make Me Believe”.

(videos and more after the jump)

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Pinnacle Square Public Art Proposal – Public Meeting May 16, 3pm

Posted in Uncategorized by tyler057 on May 12, 2009
Scott August & Steven Hubert, Pinnacle Square Public Art Proposal, 2009

Scott August & Steven Hubert, Pinnacle Square Public Art Proposal, 2009

This Saturday (May 16) at 3pm in conjunction with our current exhibition Scott August and Steve Hubert will host a public meeting to discuss their proposal for a new public art installation in Pinnacle Square, a quasi-public space adjacent to the cafe. They propose that an oversized zero and a 25ft cowboy in cut-offs and oven mitts be installed in this little square in the middle of Lower Lonsdale.  Should be fun.  So far lots of people have expressed strong feelings both for and against.  If you are interested in vibrant discussions about public art, this will definitely be worth attending.
A press release sent out by greatroadsideattractions@gmail.com, an email address known to be affiliated with Scott August’s public installation practice argues that if the installation is permitted it would be a departure from typical memorialisations of settler history and open up space for broader understandings and imaginings of the geography they might one day be installed on.
Passerby Views Public Art Proposal Billboard in Pinnacle Square

Passerby Views Public Art Proposal Billboard in Pinnacle Square

People communicating with the cafe have offered all sorts of angles.   The comments range from “You guys are radical this is awesome!” “I have a degree in Art History, I get what you are doing.  This is absolutely great!” “So is this just a conceptual work or do they actually want to put these things up?” and “Vancouver needs to loosen up, you know, Andy Warhol once came here and said, people here don’t buy art because they’re too busy looking at the mountains” to “so how far is the proposal along?  Did you apply to the city?…  I just wanna let you know I’m not too keen, this is going to block my water view… you know you’ve upset lots of people in the building here, we felt pretty blindsided by this proposal”  and red faced not so subtle threats to send the lawyers.  Some question how a cowboy might be relevant to North Vancouver, why not a whale, a lumberjack or a ship builder people ask, or, why his face and not mine.  Another said, “maybe in Castlegar, but a cowboy here?  No way!  This is an upscale neighbourhood!”
For me, I’m just thankful for the conversation and think the proposal has been a magnificent addition to the overall exhibition.  In no more than proposal form these works have opened a window to the sensation of disorienting interventions in a claimed cultural space and sparked hope for an urban environment with a sense of humour.
Totem pole next to the Credit Union building, Edgewood, BC, 2005 Photo: Jutta Ploessner Source: http://www.firstnations.eu/invasion/sinixt.htm

Totem pole next to the Credit Union building, Edgewood, BC, 2005 Photo: Jutta Ploessner; http://www.firstnations.eu/invasion/sinixt.htm

In some ways and for some people I guess the proposal can act as a kind of clandestine cognate to the the Sinixt’s totem pole, which was erected by BC Hydro in the late 1960s as a memorial to an extinct race.  This was some 10 years after the Sinixt had been declared extinct, and the Columbia River Treaty had been signed, and a massive portion of Sinixt traditional territory had been flooded out with damns.  Among the many problems with that public art commission were the facts that the Sinixt weren’t extinct and that they, like most Salishan peoples including those who once lived in what is now known as Stanley Park, never made totem poles anyway.   It just didn’t/doesn’t make sense.

Considering the way in which much of our art (public or otherwise) continues to inform our understanding of the territory we live on (here in BC, but probably elsewhere too), it makes sense to grasp for other possibilities.  And rather than just going ahead and confidently offering an alternative set of narratives it is probably worthwhile to welcome broader questions about our concepts of time and the constitution of memory. Perhaps signs like Scott’s and Steve’s are in order.  In their abstraction, absurdity and bold humour  they have already proven to act as a play on the orientation of the cultural tables.  Who knows, in the long run they might actually be able to help crack open some space for broader understandings and imaginings of the territories they engage with.  Who knows…

The Sinixt Don’t Make Totem Poles Either: Public, Art, Memory

Posted in Uncategorized by tyler057 on May 7, 2009

Tonight we open our second exhibition! If you have a chance come on out!

Where: 140 East Esplanade, North Van.
When: May 7th, 6-9pm
What: An array of works by Scott August, Steven Hubert and Marilyn James that may come together to percolate discussions about memory, our relationships to the landscapes we inhabit, the role of public art, how diverse communities relate to one another and so on…

ps: We now serve Flat Whites and we are featuring Ethiopian single origin coffee this month…