Special Collections


CURRENT Symposium (2017 – present)

CURRENT is a multidisciplinary, intersectional, music and electronic art symposium working with women and non-binary artists in Vancouver, BC and beyond. The symposium works to foster and disseminate feminist content through cross-pollination of ideas and intergenerational knowledge sharing. Many of the event’s organizers and participants are queer artists, curators, and knowledge-holders. The symposium works to address issues such as “How can we support female/non-binary artists in our community? How can we create more inclusive spaces and lineups for works to be presented? What are some common challenges we face trying to produce events and how can we overcome them?” The CDMLA holds the administrative records, event documentation (photographic and moving images), artist information, and publicity created by CURRENT organizers and volunteers, from June to August 2017.

See Memory BC for a more detailed description.

Gayblevision (1980 – 1986)

Gayblevision was one of Canada’s first TV series produced “by gay people for gay people”. It was broadcast on Vancouver Cable 10 through its West End Neighbourhood production centre (located in the West End Community Centre) between 1980 and 1986. Gayblevision is a priceless window into Vancouver’s LGBTQ communities during years of tremendous growth and upheaval, documenting the LGTBQ people, organizations, businesses and events that defined Vancouver West End’s Davie Village in the early 1980s. The series aired monthly on the first and third Tuesday of the month. In addition to regular episodes, Gayblevision also produced a series of in-depth specials. The Gayblevision collection consists of episodes, specials, and much of the surviving raw footage from the TV series. The collection also contains writing and photographs documenting the history of Gayblevision.

See Memory BC for a more detailed description.

See our online Gayblevision Society  fonds for video, photographs, oral histories, and select textual materials.

Mary Anne McEwen (1946 – 2011)

Mary Anne McEwen was a visionary in Vancouver’s feminist, LGBT and women in film and television communities. She was a founding co-producer of Gayblevision, an originating Board member of Vancouver’s Out On Screen Festival, founding member of Women In Film and Video Vancouver, and member of B.C. Film, Praxis, Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television, and VIVO Media Arts Centre. She was President and Creative Director of Forward Focus Productions Ltd. from 1977-1997 and a freelance writer, editor, analyst and story editor from 1998-2011. The collection contains Mary Anne McEwen’s documentation of Vancouver’s Gay Games, held in Vancouver from August 4 through August 11th, 1990. McEwen’s production company, Forward Focus Productions, was the official videographer for the Games.

See a selection of Celebration ’90 Gay Games videos, photographs, and select textual materials online.


The Media Artist & Activist Documentation (MAAD) files are dedicated to individual artists or activists who have been associated with the Satellite Video Exchange Society/Video Inn/Video In Studios/VIVO through the years. These people and groups may be associated with the organization in a variety of capacities, such as current or former staff, artists in residence, founding members, etc. Materials related to these artists/activists’ works and activities have been grouped in these files, which are continuously added to as new material is generated or discovered.

See a list of the Queer artists, organizations, and activists found in MAAD.

Meg Torwl (1984 – 2014)

Meg Torwl was an artist and activist worked in video, new media, audio, photography, writing, performance and arts advocacy. Her work has been exhibited, broadcast, published and performed in her native New Zealand, Canada, the United States, and the United Kingdom. She produced five new media projects – meditative colour and water photography based installations: Singing Bowls (2004), AQWAI (2006), TIARIKA (2008), Going Coastal (2010), and PORTAL/PORTAGE (2011), and directed three documentaries distributed by Video Out: Act Your Age!? (2000), where have all the lesbians gone? (2001), and Towards the day…we are all free (2007). Meg also worked in radio, producing 50 half-hour programs with Radio New Zealand National’s One in Five disability community program (2007/8), with a focus on youth, art, multiculturalism and policy. She worked for arts organizations in community outreach and project coordination for the National Film Board of Canada (2004), CBC TV (2006), KickstArt Disability Arts and Culture (2009/10), and BC Regional Integrated Arts Network (2010). Meg was a visual artist, a graduate of The Writers Studio (2011) at SFU, and published numerous books of poetry.

See Memory BC for a more detailed description.