One of Concordia’s newest initiatives makes art production more affordable for students
Concordia’s newest, underground fine arts initiative (it is literally located in the basement) deserves some recognition. The CUCCR, nicknamed “sucker” by its creators and members, is both environmentally friendly and financially accessible to students.
It works by collecting excess supplies and used art materials from places around campus (studio classrooms, the Visual Arts building storage rooms, and the Grey Nuns residence) and making them readily available to the Concordia community and members of the public in one location. According to the initiative’s depot coordinator, Arrien Weeks, CUCCR’s members are people of all ages, spanning from ages “four to eighty.” Membership is required to utilize the centre, but both it and the use of the materials are completely free.
The centre is located in the Hall building and can be tricky to find. However, starting on the ground floor of the building, there are signs and stickers that help lead the way.
The CUCCR space was also built entirely from waste materials found on campus. The wooden signs, shelving, tables and organizers were repurposed to create a warm, welcoming and store-like room where materials are categorized and displayed in an organized way. The types of materials can vary depending on what is collected and donated, but what is currently available varies from wooden boards to rubber bands and even miniature sand buckets. Used canvases are also a “hot seller,” said Weeks.
Additionally, the centre also accepts material donations to be re-used by fellow Concordians. However, be sure to check CUCCR’s website before bringing something in, as the organization doesn’t accept certain materials such as used textbooks, oil paints and articles of clothing.
According to Weeks, since the centre’s opening in March, they have had an influx of memberships but hope to increase membership even more over the school year. Recently, they’ve gained more exposure through studio arts class presentations and trips to the centre. In the future, Weeks said, CUCCR hopes to expand their initiative to a larger and more accessible space on a ground floor, “to increase our visibility even more, but also to have more space to collect more materials.”
CUCCR’s main goal is to largely reduce Concordia’s waste. According to Weeks, “up to today, CUCCR has collected over four tonnes of Concordia’s waste, and members have checked out over two tonnes of that waste.” In the years to come, Weeks said, they hope to exponentially increase both of these numbers—which are recorded through the centre’s checkout system.
“We have pretty much everything, so just come by and take a look,” Weeks added.
CUCCR is open Tuesday to Thursday from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., and is located at H013-7 in the Hall building. For more information on materials available, becoming a member, donating and more, check out CUCCR’s website.
Photo by Kirubel Mehari