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March/April 2017 Newsletter

First year students investigate stone arch at former Niagara Falls post office.

March and April have been action-packed. Click here for all the details on The APT Stone Arch Competition, the Montreal Roundtable on Heritage, our Stone Conservation Field School in Sainte-Marie Among The Hurons, the THA Canada 150 Event, the return of the 3rd Year students, and more.

February 2017 Newsletter

Second year students look out over Chaudière Falls during their visit to Ottawa in February.
  Field Trip - Second Year Students In Ottawa
A trip to the nation's capitol
As we celebrated Heritage Week, Willowbank second year students took a break from working on their Conservation Management Plans and hit the road to visit Ottawa. The group braved the snowy streets to explore the capital’s heritage, meeting with politicians, tradespeople, community and national advocates, architects and educators in the heritage sector. Students explored the complexity and diversity of Ottawa’s heritage: from the newly-restored Bank of Montreal building, to the redevelopment of the Chaudière Islands District—a cultural landscape with rich indigenous and industrial heritage. A major highlight of the trip included attending the Heritage Ottawa lecture on the new Aga Khan Global Centre for Pluralism. Willowbank also shared thoughts on the importance of heritage to community and economic development, and the scarcity of heritage skilled trades in Canada with their MP Rob Nicholson with a visit to the Sir John A. MacDonald building. Willowbankers also participated in the NCC Urbanism Lab on Heritage and Sustainability, contributing our ecological approach to heritage and the sustainability of public spaces, buildings and communities. Students enjoyed connecting with fellow Willowbank instructors, alumni and students including Justine Southam, a third year student who is currently completing a stone carving internship with Smith & Barber Atelier. A big thank you to all those who welcomed us to the nation’s capital!

First Year Students in February
Our first year class had a busy February - despite a winter break halfway through the month. Students headed to Buffallo for a visit to the Art Conservation program and labs, for an indepth look at materials conservation. Special thanks to SUNY Buffalo for the warm welcome. Classes also included Fire and Risk Management with Chris Marrion out of New York, where students took an indepth look at the lower campus as a case study. Classes rounded out with a full week of Introduction to Stone Carving with Danny Barber of Smith and Barber Atelier, and classes in Photography and Documentation.


Willowbank Launches Stone Conservation Field School at Sainte-Marie among the Hurons National Historic Site
Willowbank was pleased to announce a three-week field school at Sainte-Marie Among The Hurons in Midland, Ontario which will run from June 10 to June 30 2017. Recognized as one of the first sites of contact between the Wendat peoples and settlers, Sainte-Marie among the Hurons is a National Historic Site dating to the 1600s and is part of Huronia Historical Parks run by the Province of Ontario. The field school will focus on the conservation of the 1639 stone fireplace remains located on the site. It is the earliest European masonry located in Ontario and together with other archaeological remains, form the basis of the National Historic Site designation. The field school will be led by Willowbank faculty associate Keith Blades, one of Canada’s leading stone conservationists. Keith has been involved with the conservation of the original stonework at the Saint-Marie among the Hurons site since the mid-1990s and last year he led a team of Willowbank alumni and students on the conservation of one of the fireplaces in the summer of 2016. That project was carried out in conjunction with Philip Hoad, another Willowbank faculty associate, Director of Empire Restoration. To register or for more information on the field school or on Willowbank’s three year diploma program, please visit www.willowbank.ca.  For more information on the Sainte-Marie among the Hurons site and Huronia Historical Parks, visit: www.hhp.on.ca. 

INTBAU Canada Forum Launch
Creating conversations across Canada
We are pleased to launch the INTBAU Canada Forum. Designed to facilitate conversations about traditional architecture and urban issues across Canada. The Forum is accessible for paid members of INTBAU Canada and will host conversations moderated by our INTBAU Intern, Alex Krucker, who was introduced in our January newsletter. To check out the forum and register to join the discussion, please check out the INTBAU Canada website: http://willowbank.ca/wpdir/intbau/.




T.A.L.L TALKS: Traditional Architecture in Local Landscapes
A Willowbank and INTBAU Canada Initiative celebrating Canada's 150th anniversary
INTBAU Canada and Willowbank are proud to launch T.A.L.L TALKS 2017 - a national event meant to celebrate Canada’s 150th anniversary and inspire Canadians to find inspiration in their local architectural traditions and shine a light on traditional building methods. The aim is for a series of public and free events to occur across Canada throughout June and July. Each event would feature a theoretical and hands-on component. For instance a short lecture from a local historian, architect or enthusiast about a local landmark could be followed by a workshop or demonstration that allows those attending to experience and gain appreciation for traditional building methods key to that landmark’s construction. How it works:
  1. Come up with a lecture topic.
  2. Pair it with a workshop or demonstration.
  3. Find a place to host your lecture and worshop.
  4. Use the promotional materials INTBAU Canada/Willowbank provides to get the word out about your T.A.L.L. Talk.
For more information about how to create your own T.A.L.L talk and to put forward a simple proposal, check out the announcement here.  

JANUARY 2017- NEWSLETTER


10 Years of Willowbank - A Media Retrospective Looking back at our favourite news articles As part of our continuing celebrations of our 10 year anniversary, Willowbank is pleased to publish a 10 year retrospective of our favourite media coverage. It gives us a great sense of how far the organization has come in 10 years and serves as inspiration for the next 10 years to come.
INTBAU INTERNSHIP Introducing Alex Krucker As part of Willowbank's hosting agreement with INTBAU, Willowbank was most pleased to have the opportunity to support and introduce a new internship for our students. One of our current first year students, Alex Krucker will be the first to take on this mantle. Alex came to Willowbank with a background in Humanities from Carleton University, and experience in heritage restoration working for a developer in his hometown of Guelph, Ontario. As Alex continues his education, he says he has “…come to respect the wealth of historic knowledge and traditional skills as well as their relevance to the modern world,” a sentiment very fitting for the INTBAU internship. As the first of this internship, Alex has been hard at work creating the INTBAU forum, which will be released and announced in the coming weeks. The forum will allow paying INTBAU members and student members the opportunity to have open conversations about traditional building, architecture and urbanism. INTBAU membership fees go directly to supporting the INTBAU intern at Willowbank - if you are interested in becoming a member please join here. 
Niagara Foundation Scholarship At Willowbank our students are fortunate to be supported by our local community and a number of bursaries in honour of local donors and community groups have been established. One such scholarship is the Niagara Foundation Scholarship, which is awarded each year to a third year student who wishes to pursue an independent research project on an architecturally significant building or typology within the Niagara area. Last year’s scholarship was awarded to Sherri Koabel who recently submitted her project on the early Mennonite architecture of the Twenty Valley. We are pleased to announce that this year’s scholarship has been awarded to Stephen Telford. Stephen’s project will focus on a concrete house in St. David’s which is a wonderful and unique example of early cement construction. The house was built by the Ushers of the Queenston Cement Works, which operated from the 1880s to 1905. The house has been home to many distinguished local figures and has an intriguing vernacular form, known by each inhabitant by a different name (‘Glencree', 'Millpond Cottage', and 'M'Benmost Bower’), the current residents refer to it as Greyhame. As part of his study, Stephen is on the lookout for other early concrete/cement buildings of a similar era. Should you know of any or happen to own one within the Niagara region, Stephen wants to hear from you and can be contacted at Stephen.L.Telford@gmail.com. 
Messors Fornello Field School Announcing new Messors Scholarship for Willowbank Students and Alumni Once again we are partnering with Messors, which runs a field school in the region of Puglia, Italy. This year we have been very lucky in that Messors has extended an opportunity for one of our students or alumni to attend the Fornello Sustainable Preservation Project that will run this July. The Fornello site is a fascinating site which includes a cave with Byzantine frescos, twelve additional cave dwellings and evidence of a settlement dating back to the 3rd century B.C.E. The 2017 field school has the aim of working to stabilize the cave entrances and the natural skylights, will incorporate a drystone walling component and will have an introductory module to the restoration of the cave frescoes. In addition, the Fornello project incorporates a fantastic experience of the cultural landscape of the Altamura area, including making cheese and other foods of the area, walking tours of local heritage sites and an introduction to local shepherds whose traditional way of living is being threatened by modern agricultural practises. If you are interested in the Messor’s field schools, please visit their website.
Alumni Spotlight Lisa Palmer Lisa was in the very first year of students that joined the bold experiment at Willowbank in 2006, graduating in 2009. Lisa is a local, and still remains in the Niagara-On-The-Lake area. Since her time at Willowbank, Lisa has had many adventures, working as a heritage consultant on many smaller projects in the Niagara-on-the-Lake community, including the deconstruction and documentation of a historic conservatory. An entrepreneur and small business person, Lisa has run antique shops and home staging companies. Inspired by her time at Willowbank and instructors who introduced her to the beauty of the Niagara River Corridor and how integral it was to the Niagara cultural landscape, Lisa started the successful Niagara Kayak Rentals, which operates guided kayak tours out of Niagara-On-The-Lake and down the Niagara River for a first hand experience of the ecosystem and cultural history of the river. Never one to turn down an opportunity to flex her heritage knowledge, Lisa is also a realtor with Bosley Real Estate where she specializes in heritage home sales.