Free Panel Talk Recordings: Accessibility in Public Art

In celebration of National Accessibility Week (May 29 to June 4, 2022), check out the new “Accessibility in Public Art” playlist!

STEPS is committed to sharing programming that explores ways to make artwork in the public realm more inclusive. Find a series of panel discussion recordings captured from the CreateSpace program over the past year with a range of artists, disability activists and industry professionals sharing their knowledge and experiences. 

Scroll down to watch each discussion and learn more about the speakers!

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Photo Credit: Ysabelle Vautour

Accessibility Notice

The STEPS team is committed to the community’s full participation for this project. Please contact Meegan Lim at meegan@stepspublicart.org if you have any questions or requests and we will do our best to accommodate you.

Special thanks to Bulmash-Siegel Foundation for their generous support of STEPS’ accessibility initiatives. 

Art and Accessibility in Public Spaces – Panel Discussion

Public Art illuminates the spaces around us by humanizing our environment and reflecting its diverse communities. For people with disabilities, equal access to arts and culture presents barriers and obstacles at all levels, from application processes to experience the work firsthand. What are the various strategies creative professionals use to activate and strengthen pathways to accessibility? How can artistic programming in public spaces break down accessibility barriers? 

Exploring methods for access and equity, moderator Jenel Shaw (Manitoba) was joined by panellists Queen Kukoyi (Ontario), Salima Punjani (Quebec), and Ysabelle Vautour (New Brunswick) to discuss their varied experiences in creating and providing accessibility in the arts.

Art in Alternative Spaces – Panel Discussion

Often when we think of art we picture a traditional gallery space, with limited public access. But what happens when a community’s alternative spaces become the canvas for contemporary artworks? As part of 2021 CreateSpace programming, the Art in Alternative Spaces panel discussion seeks to explore how the Institution exists, and how it is possible to make art outside of it. Panellists Ammar Mahimwalla, Florence Yee, Bo Yeung, Philip Leonard Ocampo, explore the value and place of alternative presentation models as a space for accessibility and activism across Canada. This discussion was presented with Klondike Institute of Art & Culture and ODD Gallery. 

Access as a Creative Catalyst – Panel Discussion

Creative spaces are designed to be functional for the communities they serve. A poorly designed space can limit the diversity of people it welcomes and could ultimately fail to effectively serve its intended audience. Panelists Michel Dumont, Adriana Alarcón, Yvette Cenerini, and Sean Lee speak about their experiences in creative spaces, navigating traditional and virtual platforms for safe community engagement and creative expression. This talk was part of the 2021 CreateSpace free public programming. 

Access as a Creative Catalyst – Artist Talk

Visual artist and Executive Director of Arts AccessAbility Network Manitoba, presented her Access as a Creative Catalyst artist talk as part of the 2022 CreateSpace Public Art Forum, a national digital forum virtually convening 50 artist participants from coast to coast who identify as Black, Indigenous (First Nations, Inuit and Métis), racialized, rural and/or youth with disabilities.

About the Speakers

Jenel Shaw

Jenel Shaw

Presenter for Access as a Creative Catalyst and Art and Accessibility in Public Spaces

Jenel Shaw is a self-taught visual artist. Her artistic focus is learning new ways to craft and explore artistic expression. Jenel graduated with her master’s in Disability Studies from the University of Manitoba.

@aanmofficial
aanm.ca

QUEEN KUKOYI

QUEEN KUKOYI

Panelist for Art and Accessibility in Public Spaces

Queen Kukoyi (they/she) is a Black Bajan of Igbo and Lokono Ancestry, Queer, Gender-fluid Femme presenting, Mother, Author, Educator, Activist, Award-Winning Scholar and International Artist as well as the Executive Director of Operations for BSAM Canada.

@queenkukoyi
queenkukoyi.com

Salima Punjani

Salima Punjani

Panelist for Art and Accessibility in Public Spaces

Salima Punjani is a multisensory artist grounded in relational aesthetics. A common thread through all of her work is the creation of environments that allow for receptivity of connection.

@picturesalima
cargocollective.com/salima

Ysabelle Vautour

Ysabelle Vautour

Panelist for Art and Accessibility in Public Spaces

Ysabelle Vautour started out working in the mental health and disability support sector. In 2019 she decided to paint and create art every day for a year. A few months into her 365 art everyday challenge, she was featured in CBC and invited to speak at Artslink’s Short and Sweet Speaker Series and participated in a few live painting competitions.

@creatingaccess
creatingaccess.org

Ammar Mahimwalla

Ammar Mahimwalla

Moderator for Art in Alternative Spaces

Ammar Mahimwalla is a cultural planner, curator, and project manager with 10 years of experience at visual arts organizations and local government.

Florence yee

Florence yee

Panelist for Art in Alternative Spaces

Florence Yee is a visual artist and recovering workaholic based in Tkaronto/Toronto and Tiohtià:ke/Montreal. Their practice uses text-based art, sculpture, and textile installation through the intimacy of doubt.

@florence.cg.yee
florenceyee.com

Bo Yeung

Bo Yeung

Panelist for Art in Alternative Spaces

Bo Yeung is an interdisciplinary Cantonese artist whose work is primarily textiles, family belongings, performances and installations. She resides on the traditional territory of Tr’ondëk Hwëchin in Dawson City, Yukon.

@boyuyeung

Philip Ocampo

Philip Ocampo

Panelist for Art in Alternative Spaces

Philip Leonard Ocampo is an artist and arts facilitator based in Tkaronto, Canada. Ocampo’s multidisciplinary practice primarily involves painting, sculpture, writing and curatorial projects.

@philip.ocampo
philipocampo.com

Michel Dumont

Michel Dumont

Panelist for Access as a Creative Catalyst

Michel Dumont is a Métis, Two-Spirit artist descended from the Robinson-Superior Treaty Area who enjoys breathing new life into the discarded vintage tile by making mosaic pieces. Working with shattered tile mirrors his daily life of dealing with a shattered back, which drives him to make something beautiful out of it.

@madbear67

Yvette Cenerini

Yvette Cenerini

Panelist for Access as a Creative Catalyst

Yvette Cenerini (née Lagimodière) is a Franco-Métis visual artist from Manitoba who lives and works in Winnipeg. Behaviour and relationships are recurring themes throughout her work in media arts and printmaking.

Adriana Alarcón

Adriana Alarcón

Panelist for Access as a Creative Catalyst

In her most recent role with MAWA, Adriana will be coordinating the Foundation Mentorship Program, the Cross-Cultural Craft Programs, and all of the other MAWA programs you know and love. Originally from Guatemala, she has been working in Toronto for A Space Gallery and CARFAC Ontario, and coordinating a highly successful banner project for Toronto Pride.

@artofadriana

Sean Lee

Sean Lee

Panelist for Access as a Creative Catalyst

Sean Lee is a part of a new generation of artists, curators and arts leaders bringing fresh perspectives to the contemporary art field. An artist working in performance art and performance for the camera, his creative practice has evolved to fit the realities of navigating performance using the body as a medium, and the inevitable conclusions drawn surrounding his identity as a queer, Asian and disabled artist.

@seanleelee1
@tangled_arts

Project Partners and Funders

The 2022 CreateSpace Residency is supported by 

Logos for City of Toronto, TD Ready Commitment, Canada Council for the Arts and Ontario Arts Council

The 2022 CreateSpace Public Art Forum is supported by

Logo banner with Government of Canada, Canada Council for the Arts and CIBC logos

The 2021 CreateSpace Residency is made possible by

TD Ready Commitment logo, City of Toronto and ArtworxTO logo, Partners in Art Logo and MAWA logo, Canada Council for the Arts Logo
Logo banner with Canada Council for the Arts and Province of Ontario
Bulmash-Siegel Foundation logo
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