People & CityIntroducing The Creative Archive: a local look at creative communities across North America

Introducing The Creative Archive: a local look at creative communities across North America

Amongst the barrage of information and activity that is daily life in this era, there can be a driving desire to connect differently. Catch a vibe with some person, place or thing and stimulate ourselves in a way that expands our visual understanding and connection within a locale.

To complement this yearning, we’re introducing a new series called The Creative Archive, essays by yours truly, routed on a quest for visual and vibrational stimulus in the mass expanse of this land. Each essay will be derived from a trip itinerary in which I seek out and archive the creative people and practices in different locales across North America. Think observation of the local and regional design scene, insights on the creative environment and industry in that place, and discovery of local creatives.

What you can expect will be a mixture of personal pilgrimages, in which I; meet with artists, designers, and makers to learn about their practice, where they are inspired, and how they navigate their place; share insights on local creative happenings and points of connection and the requisite suggestions for places to work and play. 

In the Ottawa/Gatineau Edition, we will toggle between the two cities on a quest to tap into the artistic connections between them. We tour the art on either side of the river and provide insights on where you can conduct your creative business along the way. We will focus your attention on neighbourhoods to explore Canadian-made products and present perspectives on the role of accessible art in this context.


Artwork by Christian Chapman


In the Halifax Edition, we head east to immerse ourselves in local craft and the community encouraging and providing for it. We will take a look at the history of creativity in this region and the presence of art and design in the city network. We will honour the camaraderie between small business and the east coast creative community. The maritime generosity and spirit on full display.


Photography by Amy Peebles


If you, like me, also feel that no adventure is complete without a complimentary snack itinerary then you are in luck, because food will be woven into these tales. Any opportunity to break bread is an opportunity I will avail myself of and as a not so secret transit enthusiast, I will also share travel tips on how to reach the locales featured sans personal vehicle. My personal choice to never learn to drive can become your push to explore North America by train and public transit. 

In keeping with what I hope has been an obvious central tenant to these adventures, searching for and tapping into the creative community, I look forward to inviting you alongside me on what is sure to be a trip. Puns and quips of varying degree of hilarity will be a part of the adventure. That is a guarantee.

See you here next month for The Creative Archive: Ottawa / Gatineau Edition – An art adventure across the Rideau Canal.

An image of Amy Peebles.

Amy Peebles is a curator & producer residing in Hamilton, ON.

Urban planner by education, treasure hunter by choice, and always energized by the act of discovery. Amy is the founder of creative studio Regional Archive and considers herself a child of the world.


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