Fort Calgary at the confluence of the Bow and Elbow Rivers has long been described as the birthplace of the city and Calgary’s most important historic site. However, this European world view overlooks the Aboriginal history that dates back thousands of years - a history that is rooted in a sense of place rather than government and industry.
The Bow and Elbow confluence was historically a meeting place for the Blackfoot, Sarcee, and Stoney, along with European surveyors and explorers and the site settled by the NWMP prior to the construction of Fort Calgary. Artists can create opportunities to reflect on the legacies of this place and begin imagining different perspectives to inspire a new sense of place.
Because of the immense sensitivity to the site’s archeological resources, a space on nearby St. Patrick’s Island could be developed as a civic space with ongoing programming that invites dialogue on the history of Calgary and to mark the city as place where people exchange ideas and creative energy. This public space could become a cultural meeting ground for exploration, contemplation and vitality. The area could be host to intimate live performances, public art, community exchanges and/or similar projects that offer creative solutions for sustainable living; building a sense of community and inspiring new ways of looking at our city.