Crista Dahl fonds


Crista Dahl’s dedication to the library and archive since its establishment in 1973, led VIVO Media Arts Centre to rename it in her honour in 2007.  Dubbed The Mother of Tedium, Crista continues to work in the archive regularly. The Crista Dahl Media Library & Archive is the embodiment of Crista’s blood, sweat and tears, and we owe its continued existance to her.



“Born in Seattle in 1934 Crista Dahl describes [her]retrospective as inclusive of some sixty-five years of creative practice. Continually stymied by political and domestic conditions, Dahl’s pursuit of art training has followed innovative and experimental trajectories—from running an artist gallery/jazz coffee house in Seattle in 1963, to her beatnik life in San Francisco. Living in Haight-Ashbury in the mid 60’s had an enduring influence on Dahl’s life-work, as did her discovery of Will and Ariel Durant’s The Story of Civilization in the Powell River Library near Lund, where she was sheltering her sons from Vietnam War service in 1968. After moving to Vancouver in 1971 Dahl became an enthusiastic and committed member of some of this city’s most celebrated collectives and histories including the Intermedia Society, Little Hot Stove League, the Matrix International Video Exchange Conference, the New Era Social Club, the Satellite Video Exchange Society, Disasteroids, and more. Dahl’s insights into art and art teaching were supported by numerous grants and her Life Rhythm Project was presented at Simon Fraser University, Surrey Art Centre, Burnaby Art Gallery and University of British Columbia, among others. Today, Crista Dahl serves as a tireless and visionary volunteer archivist and Chairperson of the VIVO Board of Directors.”

– Lois Klassen

Scope & Status

The fonds is being processed. Videos [1/2″ open reel] document her performance art and educational workshops for children. Textual documentation includes course outlines. Crista’s work as archivist is documented throughout our archive. The bulk of Crista’s fonds is kept at her home/studio.  Researchers are invited to write us to make appointments for interviews or tours.