Backyard Wilderness: A City-Wide Arts Project

Date: Aug 18, 2019

Deadline: Oct 19, 2019 - 11:45 pm

You can experience the new exhibition and city-wide arts project, Backyard Wilderness, by Leila Armstrong in three ways:

1. Backyard Wilderness, an exhibition by Leila Armstrong at the Helen Schuler Nature Centre Community Art Gallery from Monday, August 26 – Saturday, September 28, 2019. Nature Centre Location: 300 Indian Battle Road South, Lethbridge, Alberta

2. Backyard Wilderness appearing on six billboards throughout Lethbridge from September 9 – October 6, 2019.

South Lethbridge: 4 Avenue South and 4 Street South; 13 Street South and 2 Avenue South; Mayor Magrath Drive South and 5 Avenue South

North Lethbridge: Stafford Drive North and 5 Avenue North;13 Street North and 7 Avenue North;  Mayor Magrath Drive North and 2 Avenue North

3. Backyard Wilderness, a collection of images by Leila Armstrong on the digital gallery screen in Casa’s lobby from September 7– October 19, 2019. Casa Location: 230 8th Street South, Lethbridge, Alberta.


Artist’s Statement: There is a disconnect between people’s everyday lived experience and their conception of nature as something external and removed. This leads to a concern that we will have no inclination for protecting the biodiversity with which we engage every day. Given that 81% of Canadians reside in urban centres, it is important to understand how city dwellers define and interact with urban wildlife and wilderness. Through an investigation into the urban ecology of Lethbridge, Leila Armstrong's aim is to challenge people to rethink their conception of nature as detached from our daily lives. One of the intended outcomes of her research is to increase awareness of, and the need for, engagement with urban ecologies as spaces in which humans and other species must live and thrive together.

*These projects are made possible through support from the Alberta Foundation for the Arts, the City of Lethbridge Public Art Small Projects Program, the Casa Artist Residency Program, the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada Discovery Grants Program, the Canada Research Chairs Program, and PATTISON Outdoor Advertising.