The Canadian Olympic Connection

I had heard rumours that the 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary Canada had something to do with start of the ATC movement, but couldn’t find any definite evidence. I would like to thank Chuck Stake/Don Mabie, for sending me the excerpt from the article titled Art that Makes the Trade written by Melody Jacobson, m. vanci stirnemann and himself. As many of you may know, Swiss artist m. vanci stirnemann is widely credited with introducing ATCs to the world.

The article, which appeared in the August 3, 2000 issue of The Calgary Straight weekly newspaper, is considered the most authoritative source regarding the initiation of ATCs. It confirms that stirnemann did visit Calgary in 1988 to participate in the Olympic Arts Festival where he was inspired by the adults he saw trading hockey cards. He wanted to make an artistic version but was frustrated for many years by the high cost of printing cards. In 1996 he decided to produce them by hand. The first Artist Trading Card show was held in April 1997 at INK.art&text in Zurich, and on May 31, 1997 the first ever ATC Trading Day took place there as well. Chuck Stake/Don Mabie attended that session and he brought the ATC concept back to Canada with him. The first Canadian ATC trading session was held in Calgary’s New Gallery on September 27, 1997.

Olympic Trivia:
Canada has hosted the Olympic games three times:
1976 Summer Olympics in Montreal, Quebec
1988 Winter Games in Calgary, Alberta
2010 Winter Games in Vancouver, BC

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