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There is much intrigue as to whether our lives are based on “happenstance moments”—pivotal points that occur due to a coincidence—our destiny or fate, or perhaps even a mixture of those components. While most of us spend our whole lives justifying our history and our experiences, it is interesting to envision that a particular instant of time could change one’s journey path.

My happenstance moment happened in January 2011.

I was halfway through my second year here at Trent University. This moment in my life sparked my interest to purchase a membership at the Art Gallery of Ontario in Toronto. However, I was fully aware of the unfortunate emotional, financial, and mental stresses that would be associated with my determination to visit Toronto more frequently.

These feelings of inhibition could not stop me from the desire to discover. My visits to the AGO could and would be much more than just seeing the work of David Milne, Paterson Ewen, Emily Carr, and many more; the impact of these visits was to create vivid personal experiences.

While two and a half years have now passed, I am pleasantly surprised at the outcome of my happenstance decision to become a member of The AGO.

During my third year at Trent in September 2011, I switched from International Development Studies to Cultural Studies. This decision was a great one that allowed me to still live in Peterborough, but also gave me a whole new Trent experience by giving me a very different perspective.

In addition, I was then very lucky to attain a job at the Art Gallery of Peterborough in June 2012. I continue to work there part-time to this day, and it has been invaluable to get a first-hand look at working professionally at a public art gallery. Thus, I have been able to bring personal and academic reflections into professional pursuits.

This is solely the general overview of my arts journey. I could write an introductory novel about this subject, but my intention is not to blab to you about my past, present, and future personal shenanigans.

My AGO happenstance moment could have either changed my entire existence from its predetermined ideals, or perhaps even brought my journey to meet its destiny/fate. Nevertheless, the AGO visits continue to consistently remind me of the good feelings that I genuinely felt when I came out as queer several years prior, in January 2008. Therefore, it is hard to envision that these events are only just a coincidence.

Just as we see that art is reflective of our lives, it plays an essential part in allowing voices to be heard and felt in this world.

For myself, I feel extremely thankful that this happenstance moment of two and a half years ago would eventually give me my voice for this upcoming column, which I hope to present over the course of this upcoming school year here through the Arthur Newspaper. Art is life. I hope that writing can facilitate this journey.

Thus, I will present to you my written work in this upcoming crafted column, “Inspiration Spawned by a Happenstance Moment”.