As an artist, Michèle Mackasey feels a certain social responsibility and her works present many occasions for inclusive collaborations.
At a time when the media and the public are focused on refugees from everywhere in the world, migrants on a global scale, she looks at itinerancy,which is rampant in Canada and in our cities, in order to find a solution to the negligence and disregard that victimize the homeless people we meet everyday.
During the Symposium, Michèle Mackasey will produce a series in the context of her huge project Quartier Souhaits-chez-toits (Wish-Home Neighbourhood) created with the participation of visitors and in collaboration with various community centres and organizations providing emergency shelter.
The grouping will be composed of small houses made in aid of the homeless. In a certain gesture of empathy, the visitors will be invited to draw a dwelling for a family or someone alone, from an account of their own situation. Attached to a grid hanging from the ceiling, the small houses will serve as support for drawings and will be displayed so as to create a small area of the city or a neighbourhood of wish homes, a dream on the way to becoming a reality. A component of the work will be made up of illuminated small houses, the light showing that the dwelling is inhabited.
The artist thus contrasts a certain mobility linked to the luxury and privilege of some, with the itinerancy that causes enormous stress daily for people and families who do not have a home.
Born in Chibougamau, Quebec, Michèle Mackasey now lives and works in Saskatoon. In 1991, she completed a fine arts degree with distinction in drawing and painting at the Ontario College of Art and Design.
Since then, she has presented her work in solo exhibitions in particular Face à nous at the Mendel Art Gallery in Saskatoon, at Godfrey Den Art Gallery in Yorkton and Grace Campbell Gallery in Prince Albert and then in duo with Joe Fafard in L’art Fransaskois at the Musée de la civilisation in Quebec City.
From 2012 to 2014, she had an artist residency to work in the community at the YWCA in Saskatoon. She currentlyis working in collaboration with the Band Council and the members of the English River Dene Nation.