About the Project

oh-oh Canada is an ongoing curatorial/collaborative project initiated and curated by Leah Decter. The original artists, whose contributions are featured on this site, are Adrian A. Stimson, Cecily Nicholson, Lisa Myers, Peter Morin, Cheryl L’Hirondelle, David Garneau, Michael Farnan and Leah Decter.

The project was launched on Canada Day 2016 at Parliament Hill in Ottawa where hundreds of boxes of artist designed maple sugar candies were given away to those gathered to celebrate. Since then the candies have been circulated across Canada and as far as Ireland, Australia and Chile.

This site hosts a preliminary iteration of oh-oh Canada’s newest component; a ‘virtual candy box’ that will continue to be added to and refined.

The stories that are told about our nation help us to understand ourselves and one another. By shaping particular views of who we are they also influence how lives are lived. In Canada our most prominent stories tend to emphasize the nation as peaceful, welcoming, and benevolent; a country built through diplomacy.

While it is appealing to embrace these laudable attributes, and to overlook the stories that run counter to them, to do so denies the full picture of how we have come to our present conditions in the lands we now call Canada.

The artists contributing to oh-oh canada have designed unique maple sugar candies that shine a light on important stories that are not commonly visible in mainstream Canada – only a small fraction of those that have been erased, devalued or misrepresented in a pervasive practice of denial.

Bringing the work of these artists together, oh-oh canada suggests we question what is missing from the stories we are commonly fed, and why we are so eager and proud to consume them.

Leah Decter