School Residencies

Many dancing practices are very human centred. Isabelle shared some amazing practices that allowed the children to expand how they think of dancing- in a way that involves the natural multi species world instead of separating their selves from it.

– Chloe Humprey, Program Director, Squamish Nature Learners

Willoughby and Isabelle have truly sparked a curiosity and love of nature and mushrooms in our students through their innovative and artistic approach to science. We are so grateful to have had the chance to work with them.  

Anita Lau, Teacher at Mitchell Elementary

Willoughby Arevalo and Isabelle Kirouac offer a variety of school residencies focused on art and ecology that can be tailored to a diversity of age groups and contexts, in English and French. Students can learn about fungi through Project Based Learning that may include dance, sensory walks, living sculpture, costume making, creative writing, natural dyes, painting, culinary arts, biosonification, and more. We provide frameworks encouraging the participants to create original artistic work, both collaboratively and individually, based on the living systems in and around us. Through experiential learning and conversations, everyone is invited to reflect on the intersections between the kingdom of fungi, the body, art and ecology. This is an opportunity to build connections with each other and with nature.

Example of past and current residencies:

Art & Mycology Program (2018-2023)
This project is an ongoing year long residency at Mountainside/SmanitaXan Secondary, produced by North Van Arts, with the generous support of ArtStarts, Bristish Columbia Arts Council and TELUS. Example of past projects include Mushroom Labyrinth, The Mushroom Parade, Secret Fungi, Renewing the Fungal Body – a comment on fast fashion and Mushroom Mural.

The Art & Mycology Program at Mountainside Seconday

ArtStarts Artists in the Classroom residencies (2018-2023)
These residencies generally last from 2-8 weeks. Past residencies includes Mitchell Elementary and Anderson Elementary in Richmond, École Norval-Morrisseau in Vancouver, Whytecliff Agile Learning Centre in Langley, Squamish Nature Learners, École André Piolat in North Vancouver, Columbia Park Elementary and École des Glaciers in Revelsoke. Example of past projects include The Mushroom Parade, Felted Fungi Field Guides and Secret Fungi.

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