First Wednesday 11 :: Explore the Electronic Age

Join the cultural and social happening

October 4, from 6 to 8 PM
McLuhan House (11342 – 64 Street)

Turn out. Tune up. Drop into First Wednesday each month!
Light refreshments provided. Open to the public.

Admission by donation. Go to Eventbrite to R.S.V.P!

6 p.m. // Television Part 1, with McLuhan Literati
Join Marco Adria and Stuart MacKay, McLuhan House’s resident scholars to learn how TV has evolved. Try out McLuhan’s useful research method called the tetrad and apply to the medium of television in its traditional format. They will illuminate the subject with their knowledge from Marshall’s published works, ancestry, and personal legend. It’s a great opportunity to check out the TV Wall, a multimedia art installation revealing the zeitgeist of the McLuhan era at the height of his celebrity.

7 p.m. // New Media Seminar No. 11, with Blair Brennan
When You Cut Into the Present the Future Leaks Out: William S. Burroughs, Brion Gysin, Marshall McLuhan and the Cut-Up
Edmonton artist Blair Brennan has long been fascinated by this aleatory technique (a sort of literary collage) and has employed it frequently in his own text-based artworks. The literary experiment was fundamental to a significant portion of Burroughs output as a writer and his visual art; however, it is tempting to disregard Burroughs’ use of the cut-up as the whimsical idiosyncrasy of one author. Marshall McLuhan’s 1964 article in The Nation on Burroughs’ infamous book Naked Lunch, provides insight into the use of the cut-up, not as a novelty but as a methodology that can, as Burroughs suggested, be readily adapted to the work of any writer, musician or artist.

Artist Biography
Blair Brennan combines his writing and art practice from his home in Edmonton. His sculpture, installation and drawing have been exhibited nationally in numerous group and solo exhibitions. Brennan has contributed articles to a number of printed and digital arts and cultural publications and his work was recently included in a three-person exhibition in Athens, Greece, the first substantial exhibition of his work internationally. A 1988 Globe and Mail art review noted the “rude punk brutality” of Brenan’s artwork. With regard to visual art in his home city of Edmonton, he has been called an “enfant terrible” and a “dissenter” (to an established school of Edmonton-based abstract sculpture).
Edmonton Journal arts reporter Pamela Anthony gets closer to the poetic nature of Brennan’s work, comparing him to Joseph Campbell and, more recently, Regina-based artist and critical art writer David Garneau has called him an “Edmonton-based neo-beat poet disguised as a blue-collar industrial artist who brands walls, books, leather and paper with the world’s subtexts.”

Questions? Contact Chelsea Boos at 780.474.0907 |

About the Program
Build community and meet artists, researchers, and community members who are continuing Marshall McLuhan’s legacy of probing new media in the global village! First Wednesday offers opportunities to engage on different topics of importance to our future at the intersection of social history, art, communications, and technology.

Building on the legacy of McLuhan’s indomitable curiosity about media, the McLuhan link is celebrated through ongoing partnerships with Stuart MacKay (retired librarian, McLuhan genealogist, historian, and Marshall’s cousin-once-removed) and Marco Adria (Author and Professor Emeritus from the Masters of Arts in Communications and Technology program at the University of Alberta). Dr Adria is also an advisor at the Centre for Public Involvement, and author of numerous books including Technology and Nationalism (2009), The lighted marketplace (2014) and Handbook of Research: Citizen Engagement and Public Participation in the Era of New Media (2017).

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R.S.V.P. today to reserve your place!

About McLuhan House
In January 2016, McLuhan House opened as an interpretive space for Marshall McLuhan’s life and legacy. It was designated a municipal historic resource and restored by Arts Habitat, with support from the City of Edmonton and Edmonton Arts Council. McLuhan was a famous Canadian professor, media critic and author who lived in Edmonton at the historic 1912 McLuhan Residence until 1915.

Arts Habitat acknowledges that McLuhan House is situated on the traditional lands of the Nehiyawak, Nakoda Sioux, Ojibwa, Iroquois, and Dene First Nations, as well as a gathering place for Indigenous peoples including Inuit, and Métis. We honour the treaties, languages, and cultures of Indigenous peoples whose presence continues to enrich the community of Edmonton, an area also known in the Cree language as amiskwaciwâskahikan (Beaver Hills House) or pehonan (meeting place).

Participant Information
Parking is available at the back for people with limited mobility. Please note, the historic house is not wheelchair accessible. Nearest Bus Routes are 2, 8, 141, 142.

Seminar discussions are recorded for archival purposes. You may also find us on Periscope by visiting @madria40. Attendees and guardians of participants under 18 will be requested to sign an image and audio release form.

We honour everyone’s right to actively participate in the discussion and endeavour to create space for wide representation across discipline, class, gender, race, sexual orientation, age and ability. Oppressive language or behaviour will not be tolerated.

We ask everyone who attends to: Contribute to a safer space • Show care for themselves and the place • Support each individual present • Keep an open mind to others and their perspectives • Listen well and do not interrupt • Validate one another’s feelings and experiences • Encourage empathy and consideration • Refrain from judgement • Respect each other’s pronouns and identities • Be accountable for your words and actions. Thank you for helping make McLuhan House an inclusive environment for all!

Seminars work the best when everyone is able to:
• Play, Doodle, Draw, Have Fun!
• Speak with their mind and heart;
• Facilitate their self and others;
• Link and connect ideas;
• Contribute their thinking, and
• Listen together for patterns, insights, and deeper connections.

Space is limited. Please reserve your seat at!