Powell Street Festival Society announces an online program, The Paueru Gai Dialogues. In a series of 9 online events, BIPOC artists and activists will share their perspectives on current social issues. The project intends to inspire civic engagement and community building during the disruption of the enduring pandemic.
Executive director Emiko Morita says, “The Black Lives Matter protests and the widening gap between the privileged and marginalized populations have been amplified by the global health crisis. We cannot wait for the pandemic to pass to respond to these needs; this is the opportunity to create safe spaces where we can challenge ourselves to listen to difference and to deepen our understanding of ourselves and others, and to find ways to use any privilege that we might have for positive change.” Morita continues, “It is exciting to consider that we might take this moment to move beyond our Internment/model minority narrative, and to explore questions of accountability as settler-colonizers as we continue to grapple with our own history of displacement.”
Regarding the format of the event, Morita says, “We know ‘Zoom fatigue’ is a thing and we don’t want to waste people’s time. The Paueru Gai Dialogues is a free event but it does include an expectation of the audience/participants.”
After the panelists give 7–10-minute presentations that share their perspective on the dialogue topic, the participants will go into breakout groups. Participants will be asked to share their own experience or perspective on the given topic and to listen to the others in their group. Of course, the participant to choose to pass and the group facilitator will ensure the space promotes safety and inclusion for everyone. To wrap up the event, participants will reconvene to offer generative questions for further contemplation.
We are grateful to Hapa Collaborative, SFU’s David Lam Centre, The Bulletin (JCCA), ElementIQ, The Canada Council for the Arts, BC Arts Council and City of Vancouver for financial and in-kind support.
Join the movement of goodwill and wishes this 2021!
This past year has been a particularly difficult one, and we hope that 2021 has good fortune in store for us all. As you may know, darumas are seen as symbols of perseverance and luck. They’re also the unofficial Powell Street Festival mascot! The eyes of the daruma are initially blank. They are meant to be filled in on one side when a wish is made and only completed on both when that wish is fulfilled.
In the spirit of Powell St Festival, we encourage you to create this gesture of good will to your community, your household, and Paueru Gai. Fold a daruma with whatever paper you have and fill in one eye to make a wish for the future. You can place your daruma in your window, take your daruma around your neighborhood for a photoshoot, or fold some to send to friends and family so they can also make new year’s wishes!
The Powell Street Festival Society’s (PSFS) mission is to cultivate Japanese Canadian arts and culture to connect communities. Our main activity is producing the Powell Street Festival (PSF) in Vancouver’s historic Japanese Canadian neighbourhood, Paueru Gai. PSF is an annual celebration of Japanese Canadian arts and culture. In addition to PSF, we engage in co-presentations with arts organizations and produce an annual season of cultural and artistic programming.
info [at] powellstreetfestival.com
Emiko Morita :: Executive Director
emiko [at] powellstreetfestival.com
Samantha Marsh :: Program Coordinator
samantha [at] powellstreetfestival.com
jcadirectory [at] powellstreetfestival.com
Gawa Desilets:: Development and Administrative Coordinator
gawa [at] powellstreetfestival.com
Tracy Moromisato :: Special Projects Coordinator
tracym [at] powellstreetfestival.com