Homefest is an annual event presented by the Edmonton Coalition on Housing and Homelessness featuring music, poetry, art, and speakers to raise funds for and awareness of homelessness and housing issues. This year's event featured a fun and interactive children's area with storytelling, crafts, and clowns, as well as panels speaking about the experiences of homelessness from a variety of perspectives.
This year's art exhibit was expanded and included visual art (particularly photography, paintings, and mixed-media) that dealt with different aspects of housing issues. Photos from the late Leonard Martial were there (he was homeless and documented the streets), work from inner city youths and adults, and even a few of my pieces that were featured in Edmonton's Food Bank's Expressions of Hunger earlier this year.
As for music, a number of Edmonton's best folk and roots artists performed on three stages. The performance that stood out the most for me (and for others, as I gleaned afterwards from discussions) was "One Room," which featured singer/songwriters Bob Jahrig, Jessica Heine, Maria Dunn, and Joe Nolan performing songs they wrote to narrate photos taken 25 years ago by Sharon Nolan. Nolan photographed elderly residents of a downtown rooming house.
This was my first year attending Homefest, and I thought the connection between art/music and working on solving an important social issue was important. Here are my photos from Homefest.