Each resident artist is planning and preparing a session which will be open to the public by donation. Each session will be different based on the interests and expertise of the presenting artist. These events will take place a various times, dates and locations throughout the Haliburton area. Scroll down to see upcoming events.

Halls Island Artist Residency Session 6

Madeleine Donohue, play write and screenwriter, will lead a reading of her play “When the Ice Breaks”. Local actors will be reading the various parts. After the reading, stay for a Question and Answer period. Jack Brezina, a Halls Island Committee Member, is hosting this community session at the Haliburton Museum. 66 Museum Rd, Haliburton ON.

“My play is called When The Ice Breaks, and it's set during the war of 1812. It's a drama: a little bit of mystery, little bit of romance.”

Date: Saturday September 14

Location: Haliburton Highlands Museum, 66 Museum Rd., Haliburton ON

Time: 2:00 pm - 3:30 pm

Please rsvp to hallsislandartistresidency@gamil.com if you plan to attend. Admission by donation.

Halls Island Artist Residency Community Session 5

Celebrate the Tenth Anniversary of the gift of Dahl Forest with artists Sophie Edwards and Chris Turnbull (in partnership with the Haliburton Highlands Land Trust)

Dahl Forest - Videopoem project
Time: Saturday, August 31st 2019 10:00 am-1:00 pm
Location: meet at the Dahl Forest main gate at 1307 Geeza Rd., Minden Hills. (Carpooling appreciated)
Activity: Light hike

Artist/writers Sophie Edwards and Chris Turnbull are attending the Hall’s Island residency during the first week of September. We each tend to work in hybrid forms — mixing genres on the page and curating and/or installing installation pieces within landscapes. In celebration of Dahl Forest’s 10th anniversary as part of the land trust, and to recognize its various shared histories, we would like to create a short videopoem that combines written, spoken, and video/audio contributions by community members with pieces that we devise during our visit to the forest.

Participants can email material to us (written (any kind) or recorded text; drawings; video and/or audio) after or before the hike. Video and audio should be no longer than 15 seconds (to save us time, you can do the editing of your original piece!); and written submissions no longer than 30 words.

Join us in person, or send your contributions anytime up until the end of September.
Our emails are: sophieanneedwards@gmail.com and chris.cturnbul@gmail.com.

We will put all contributions on Google Drive (unless you ask us not to), and from your material create a short videopoem over the fall. Some of your work might be altered or shortened from its original submission. You will be credited for your material.

Some prompts:
How often do you return to Dahl Forest?
Are there particular aspects of the Forest that draw you again and again?
What sorts of things make it important to you?
What are some encounters you’ve had in the forest?
What species and landforms have you noticed?
What things have changed since you first visited the forest?
What kinds of creatures, plants, birds and insects are particularly important in this forest?
What sounds speak to the park’s ecology and/or your relationship to it?


Sophie Edwards
sophie anne edwards walks and creates site-specific and responsive poetry on Mnidoo Mnising (Manitoulin Island). Her work has been published in a number of print and online publications including Arc Poetry Magazine, and the Canadian League of Poets’ Poetry Pause. Her poems also appear in the bush for a mostly biotic readership. She is currently working on a book-length collection titled Interview with a River with support from the Canada Council for the Arts.

Chris Turnbull is the author of continua (Chaudiere Books 2015; Invisible Books 2019) and [ untitled ] in o w n (CUE Books 2014). She has published several chapbooks, the most recent being contrite (above/ground 2019) and, in collaboration with text/artist Bruno Neiva, Undertones (Low Frequency Press 2019). Other visual and text based work can be found online, in print, and within landscapes. She curates rout/e, a footpress whereby poems are planted on trails: www.etuor.wordpress.co

Halls Island Artist Residency Community Session 2

Community Poem Creation - ongoing through the summer

Keep an eye out in our Haliburton County libraries, art galleries, and public spaces in early July for a chance to make your contribution to a Community Poem!  This project is being led by one of the Halls Island Artist Residency artists, Brooke Manning.  She will be distributing booklets with writing prompts to each location, encouraging the community to connect with each other using the anonymity and grace of the written word. Feel free to add thoughts, feelings or connections to the prompts, or add your own words based on what might be moving you that day. Feel free to also write more than once, visit the books daily or weekly, and read other entries too. Brooke will be collecting the booklets late July and will use the words penned to create and publish a Community Poem in a chapbook.  Halls Island Artist Residency will make these available for sale and for viewing. All profits will be donated to community arts and literary projects.  

Please contact hallsislandartistresidency@gmail.com with any questions


Past sessions 2019

Below is information and photos you might enjoy from the completed 2019 Sessions

Halls Island Artist Residency Community Session 1

On June 27th, Ryan Kasperowitsch presented his thoughts on Outdoor Education and Experiences as they relate to watercolour painting. Ryan is an avid outdoorsman and also a doctoral student at Brock University. A large group of summer staff were present for his session at YMCA Camp Wanakita. The young audience had many very thought provoking and relevant contributions to the open discussion following Ryan’s talk. Ryan also very generously donated a framed watercolour painting to Camp Wanakita’s fundraising auction which helps send kids to camp.

Ryan donated this beautiful watercolour painting to Camp Wanakita’s fundraising auction!

Ryan donated this beautiful watercolour painting to Camp Wanakita’s fundraising auction!

Halls Island Artist Residency Community Session 3

Poetry Reading & Artist Talk with Anna Swanson and April White

Sunday July 14 2:00 pm -4:00 pm Haliburton Museum

66 Museum Rd. Haliburton ON

Anna Swanson and April White will offer a poetry reading and artist talk based on their collaborative project "The Garbage Poems." April and Anna will each present their own work from this project and discuss how they came together to work on it. Anna will read a series of “Garbage Poems” from the project and talk about found poetry and April will talk about how illustrating this project fits into the context of her practice. April will show images of the artworks in progress including the interactive website that the artists developed together. (https://www.garbagepoems.com/index.php )

We wrote, we painted, we swam. We took underwater footage with a GoPro camera. A magical 2 weeks on Halls Island working on our collaborative project: The Garbage Poems (garbagepoems.com).

Thank you to everyone who made this possible — April White & Anna Swanson

Anna and April underwater (in their natural habitat)

Anna and April underwater (in their natural habitat)

Where Anna's poetry happened

Where Anna's poetry happened

“Math Notebook Inside Page,” watercolour, 2019, by April White. For more recent paintings from The Garbage Poems you can check out April’s instagram: @aprilmarylynn or search #thegarbagepoems on Instagram.

“Math Notebook Inside Page,” watercolour, 2019, by April White. For more recent paintings from The Garbage Poems you can check out April’s instagram: @aprilmarylynn or search #thegarbagepoems on Instagram.

Little reminders of what can be found on Halls Island. “Pieces of Halls Island,” watercolour, 2019, by April White

Little reminders of what can be found on Halls Island. “Pieces of Halls Island,” watercolour, 2019, by April White

Halls Island Artist Residency Community Session 4

Pony Tales: The History and Mystery of the Ojibwa Horse

With Heather M. O’Connor and Lesley English

Monday July 29, 6:30 pm - 8:00 pm  

Abbey Gardens, 1012 Garden Gate Drive, Haliburton ON

 The Ojibwe Horse, also known as the Lac La Croix Indigenous Pony, is one of the rarest breeds in the world. It’s also one of the biggest mysteries.

Herds of these Indigenous-bred horses once roamed like deer through the forests of the Canadian Shield. But where did they come from? How did they survive our harsh Canadian winters? And what made the herds disappear?

Who carried out “The Heist Across the Ice,” a daring mid-winter rescue that saved the lives of the last four surviving horses? And who is helping the breed edge back from the brink of extinction today?

Author Heather M. O’Connor travelled to northwestern Ontario to answer these questions. She met Ojibwe Horses and their breeders, searched for clues in the historical archives at Quetico Provincial Park, and spoke to people who remember “The Heist Across the Ice.” Come to The Gathering Place July 29 for the “tail” of her discoveries.

Then walk over to the paddock, where Lesley English will introduce you to Maple and Sammy, Abbey Gardens’ own Ojibwe Horses. She’ll point out their unique adaptations and explain their importance to Abbey Gardens’ equine assisted learning program.