The Tales of a Timeline / Les Fables d’une Chronologie

Just  little reminder if you’re in the Hamilton area…

Vous invite à participer à : « Les Fables d’une Chronologie – L’atelier des Histoires de Hamilton »

Développé de la recherche amassée des archives et de questionnaires présentés aux habitants de Hamilton, l’atelier Les Fables d’une Chronologie engagera ces participants à créer collectivement une histoire vaste du passé, présent et future en pensant aux statuts économique, industriel, social, culturel et politique de cette ville.  Cette histoire fera partie de la publication pour Deux Contes d’une Ville, qui sera disponible à la fin de l’exposition.

L’atelier prendra place le Vendredi 9 mars 2012, à 3:30pm, dans la cuisine communautaire, au Marché Fermier d’Hamilton (35 boul. York, Hamilton). L’ouverture officielle de l’exposition aura lieu plus tard le même soir de 6:30 à 8:00pm à Hamilton Artists Inc. (155 rue James N. Hamilton).

Envoyez votre réservation à pour cet atelier.


The Tales of a Timeline: Hamilton’s Stories Workshop

Drawing from a range of archival research and post-it note surveys with residents of Hamilton, The Tales of a Timeline workshop will ask participants to collectively write a sprawling story of Hamilton’s past, present, and future through economic, industrial, social, cultural, and political lenses. This story will then be featured in the forthcoming publication as part of the Two Tales of a City project.

Join us for the workshop starting at 3:30pm at the Community Kitchen of the Hamilton Farmer’s Market (35 York Boulevard, Hamilton) on Friday, March 9th, 2012.   RSVP to for the workshop.

Join us for the official opening of Two Tales of a City, later on that evening, from 6:30-8pm at Hamilton Artists Inc. (155 James St. N., Hamilton).

Two Tales of a City: Hamilton History Hunters Day 2

We spent the day in Hamilton again, this time walking around downtown as Official Hamilton History Hunters, building a timeline of Hamilton’s history with the help of city residents and visitors around Jackson Square, a multi-use complex in the downtown core.

Both Hiba and I had specific tasks that we alternated during our investigation. Hiba had our timeline, pins and post-its while I started off with the camera and a clipboard with research articles from our last trip up.

We met a lot people who ere eager to speak about Hamilton, others were rushed or didn’t have much to say.

This man was visiting Hamilton because his wife was in the hospital. He was a retired auto worker and had some good insights into that industry.

Our timeline quickly started to fill up with experiences, events, feelings, regrets, and hopes for hamilton’s past, present and future.

This person was a student and spent some time briefing a few articles and marking key words and phrases.

This woman was an infinite source of information about Hamilton’s Steele and Textile industries. I feel like we could have talked with her for hours.

Hiba did a fantastic job taking down her points for the timeline as she spoke. I think we must have had 5 or 6 different post-its filled before we continued our hunt.We used sewing pins to attach the post-its to the timeline. It was fast enough for me to manage but Hiba was having a hard time reaching from behind it.


Halfway through, I handed the camera off to Hiba and donned the timeline. I quickly realized that I now needed to renegotiate moving through city space.

Lots of hustle and bustle around Jackson Square on this morning, we headed out super early to catch students and workers on their daily commute.

It seemed productive to hang around the bus stops to spark up conversation with people coming on and off the bus.

This guy had some good stories about Hamilton’s past. As I was talking to this guy, Hiba was having a good discussion with another enthusiastic Hamilon Historian.

We were catching many people’s curiosity and interest. Some people were too busy to talk, some didn’t have much to say, and others enjoyed the invitation to share. One lady was just hanging around this area because she was looking for an address and couldn’t find it.

We had some yellow police officers follow us back to our car, I think they thought they were protecting us from the homeless people outside of this mission. I felt pretty safe, though. The night before, we also saw police officers on horses downtown. The only other time I’ve seen that was in Calgary. 

After about a solid two hours we returned to our parking lot and looked over our gathered notes.

Close up of our findings.

What will happen in Hamilton in 100 years?

What are you looking forward to tomorrow?

What happened 100 years ago in Hamilton?

What do you hope for Hamilton in a 100 years?

What did you do yesterday in Hamilton?

What will happen in Hamilton in 100 years?

Hamilton history.

100 years ago, the mafia came here from the old country.

Hamilton’s past.

The two day trip turned out to be really successful! We met and talked a lot of interesting people throughout the streets of Hamilton. Thanks to everyone at Hamilton Artists Inc. for making our stay enjoyable and productive.



Book Sprinting

The act of authoring a book has traditionally been a long and arduous task consisting of many revisions and often years of work. Book Sprinting, on the other hand, is a sort of reaction to the traditional method of book production. In this case, a small group of writers collaboratively co-author, edit, and revise a book in a week or so. The end result is a finished publication that probably has a cohesiveness not present in some books.

I wonder if attempting a one-off publication project like this would be a good idea for us (Broken City Lab). We usually have a half-dozen research fellows around the table at most meetings. I bet we could pull off a nice mini-publication over a weekend.

Via: We Make Money, Not Art (Image from another similar Book Sprinting event.)