ART STORY | Workshop Stories: The Watcher

On March Break, the Art Gallery of Mississauga and the Mississauga Library System hosted TELL ME A STORY: An Art-Inspired Creative Writing Workshop for Youth. Participants, aged 10 – 19, were asked to choose from a selection of works from the AGM’s Permanent Art Collection, or the AGM’s current exhibition, Lila Lewis Irving: Con Spirito | Retrospective. The AGM provided captions for some of the works, to inspire imaginative storytelling. Participants were given 30 minutes to come up with their stories.

The inspiration for the workshop came from Chris Van Allsburg’s Chronicles of Harris Burdick, which features short stories  inspired by Van Allsburg’s illustrations and created by writers such as Stephen King and Lois Lowry. Thanks to the support of Thomas Allen Ltd, ten of the participants were also given signed copies of Chronicles of Harris Burdick or the original Mysteries of Harris Burdick.

Jorge Correa, The Watcher
From the Art Gallery of Mississauga Permanent Art Collection
The house watched back.
The Watcher
By Robin Cheng

It was 12 o’clock at night. On the Front Street, the light of every building were tightly shut as usual.Similar to other building, 888 Front Street is a house with two garages, 3 bedroom, and a green, but tiny backyard with wooden fence. However, this house has been abandoned for more than 5 years with its never organized backyard. Nobody knows who owns this property, or even when this property was built. “Who lives here?” Everyone wondered.But just on the evening after the New Year’s Day. The backyard door opened quietly. A white man with shapeless face, wearing a black sweater, walking in slowly while dragging his feet. Both arms seems to be holding a house key and a black business folder. Without any sound, he opened the backyard door precisely, and then he closed it. He later took off his sweater, and went upstairs. Immediately, he turned on the dim light in the bedroom, where a desk was placed inside. The white male then sat in front of a desk, looks to be organizing his stuff a bit. Suddenly, he took out a digital device, similar to an iPad, but with special keyboard under the screen, and started to type in something.In fact, he doesn’t even know that one of the neighbors has turned the light on, standing beside bedroom window and watching all these actions. Of course, the neighbor never saw the device before, but also felt something weird because they never have this device in North America.

“So that’s our neighbor!” Neighbor wondered. “Where did he get that sort of device?”

The neighbor stared at him for a moment, then saw a hammer symbol representing the community party.

“He’s a Russian spy!” neighbor thought anxiously. “I gotta tell the police! NOW!”

He dialed police number quickly without the male’s notice. After a few minutes, a few police cars ended up on the street, lined as a single file for the arrest. In the end, the Russian spy got arrested.

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