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Michael Shumiatcher

Media Educator, Creative Producer

Michael Shumiatcher graduated from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design in 1984, with a focus on Sculpture. He has shown in Halifax, Calgary and Vancouver. An essay on his work was written by Canadian sculptor and art writer Robin Peck. It was published in Parachute Magazine, and separately by the grunt gallery.

Michael received his Masters degree in Education from Simon Fraser University and has been teaching in public high schools since 1994. He currently holds the position of Department Head of Visual and Performing Arts at Burnaby Central Secondary School and is the Chair of the Burnaby Art Teachers Association. 

When the Thunder in our Voices exhibition opened at Robson Square in Vancouver in 2017, Michael brought his Burnaby high school class to visit. The students, many of whom were originally from other countries, noticed that northern artists were deeply influenced by the stories of their grandparents. In response, Michael challenged the teenagers to use their own family stories as the basis of their art projects. 

The project was successful: students collected stories from grandparents as far away as China and Vietnam, and created videos and animations detailing events in their family histories, both joyful and tragic. Michael has now produced a training video, Northern Inspiration, that encourages other Canadian art teachers to use the work of northern artists to stimulate a dialogue with southern Canadian students.