George Bowering, BA’60, MA’63, DLit’94
George Bowering has been provoking and inspiring writers and readers for half a century. While he may be better known for his poetry and fiction, the essay has all along held an equally important place in his work. His new collection of essays, Writing and Reading (New Star Books), includes discussion of writers (ranging from Michael Ondaatje and Alice Munro to Oana Avasilichioaei and Robert Kroetsch), difficult poetry and close reading (from Gerard Manley Hopkins to Judith Fitzgerald and David Bromige), Vancouver’s poetry pre-history, making lists and collecting, and the importance of our National Archives. Whether writing about fiction or poetry, film or music, Bowering’s message, delivered with his inimitable style, is the same: for best results, pay attention.
Olga Campbell, BA’64, BSW’66, MSW’67
Olga Campbell recently wrote A Whisper Across Time, her family’s story of the Holocaust told through prose, art and poetry. The book was one of eight to win a 2019 IPPY Award (Freedom Fighter Category), and picked up a 2019 Eric Hoffer Award for its cover design. It was also a finalist in the 2019 International Book Awards. Campbell’s book is her family’s story, but it is also about intergenerational trauma and is a cautionary tale about the times that we live in, asking the reader to look at what is happening in the world today. It happened before, it could happen again.
Jane Saborio (née Butcher), BA’64, MA’68
Born in Colombia of English and Irish parents and raised in Peru, Jane Saborio studied French, Spanish, and Romance studies at UBC. For years, Saborio taught Spanish at UBC, as well as Spanish and French at Douglas College and at Kwantlen University, while raising four wonderful children. She is now pursuing her lifelong passions as an instructor, author, avid photographer, and professional impressionist visual artist.
Saborio travels between Mazatlan, Mexico, and the Lower Mainland while offering art demos, workshops, and private studio classes. She participates in award-winning shows internationally and fulfills her insatiable desire to travel with her second husband, Ken, to historic and scenic wonders of the world.
Saborio says that her “God-given artistic talent,” pursued late in life, is inspired by the impressionists, by nature’s beauty, by ancient facades in Mediterranean architecture, and by the daily routines of Indigenous peoples. She considers art to be the spiritual nourishment that allows her to deal with the deaths of her baby brother, who was only 17, in 1967; of her beloved father in 1985; of her older brother in 1996; and the horrific blow of losing her only daughter Laura (also a UBC graduate) to aggressive melanoma in 2012.
Saborio finds joy in teaching painting techniques, in inspiring others to pursue a new avenue regardless of their age and circumstance, and in keeping mentally and spiritually alive through a creative act. Saborio says that she finds strength to handle life’s challenges, such as her husband’s disability, through quiet, contemplative, and creative time. She finds serenity in her home studio, on a solitary beach walk at dawn communing with a beautiful snowy egret and sandpipers, and watching a magnificent sunset. Saborio’s three sons, their wives, and her adorable multi-lingual grandchildren (who speak Spanish, English, Japanese, and Mandarin) continue to enrich her life. She believes that her grandchildren already show signs of inherited artistic, photographic and literary talents, to her delight.