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Indigenous art market helps artists who struggled during pandemic –



A pop-up Indigenous art market in Toronto is promoting and selling the work of Indigenous artists who have faced economic challenges throughout the pandemic.

ANDPVA’s Indigenous art market opened this week in Leslieville at 1107 Queen St. E. On Saturday, while celebrating its grand opening, patrons lined up outside the pop-up store demonstrating the high demand of Indigenous art in the city.

Curator and organizer Barb Nahwegahbow said the reception from the community has been “beyond belief.” She and Marcos Arcentales have curated a collection of art for sale that includes the work of at least 15 Indigenous artists representing six different nations working in a variety of mediums.

“It’s very heartwarming,” Nahwegahbow told CBC News. “It brings the artists to tears to hear how people feel about their work.”

Artists have suffered greatly during the COVID-19 pandemic, as many of their shows, tours, and exhibits have been closed or postponed. Indigenous artists have been hit even harder as powwows have halted, and so too have other cultural events that so many relied on for exposure and income.

“They’ve been isolated and suffering economically,” Nahwegahbow said. “The inspiration is hard to come [in those conditions].”

She noted when the artists saw how the community responded to the pop-up market, “that inspiration came back to them.”

While speaking to CBC, a constant queue took shape outside the store. The market will remain open throughout the holiday season until Dec. 24.

The store features a variety of art pieces and creations including bead work, paintings, print, candles, jewelry, moccasins and much more. (CBC)

“We’ve shown that Toronto needs a place like this,” Nahwegahbow said. “A place where you can buy authentic Indigenous art.”

ANDPVA, the Association for Native Development in the Performing and Visual Arts, is Canada’s oldest Indigenous arts service organization, its executive director Millie Knapp said. Knapp hopes that the pop-up market can soon be available online.

“There is a very real possibility we’ll take this online,” she said. “But it would be amazing to have a physical space and an online presence so Indigenous artists continue being helped beyond the pandemic.”

At the market, patrons will find bead work, paintings, prints, candles, jewelry, moccasins featuring the work of artists like Mo Thunder, Clayton Samuel King, Susan Hill, Warren Steven Scott, Mel Bartel, Wes Havill, Diane Montreuil, and more.

One of the patrons, Michael Kaniva, plans to share what he found with his family and friends in the form of Christmas cards after he bought several prints of Indigenous art.

“It’s so meaningful to have this opportunity not just to see the product but to feel the culture and the background and the experience that goes into the creation of this art,” he said.

Kaniva says it’s important to support Indigenous art for two major reasons — the economic support to Indigenous artists suffering in the pandemic, and as a way to spread cultural awareness to people who would otherwise have not experienced or seen Indigenous art.

“We have so few opportunities to experience Indigenous art and this is one of few we have available to us,” he added.

ANDPVA executive director Millie Knapp hopes to create an online portal for patrons to purchase Indigenous art, but remains hopeful that a permanent physical space might be established. (CBC)

Theresa Burning’s beadwork can be found for purchase at the store as well. She came by to support the shop and other artists on Saturday afternoon.

“To see something like this going on is very exciting,” she said. “It all flows together, having the Indigenous art in one place.”

Laura Heidenheim said she was excited to support the market, saying it’s important for settlers to support Indigenous artists.

“It would be great if it was permanent,” she said. “I think it’s important for settlers to find ways for reciprocity, and one way is supporting Indigenous businesses.”

Opening a permanent physical space is “something we’re thinking about,” Nahwegahbow said.

“There’s a lot more openness and awareness, people do want to support Indigenous people,” she said. “The artists will continue to create and we have other artists who are also interested.”

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Northern Arts Review: Why art is smart investment – Alaska Highway News



Haley-BassettHello, dear reader. This week, I will cover a big announcement from the BC Arts Council, as well as some ins and outs of the arts grant–writing system, and argue for stronger relationships between local governments and arts organizations for the betterment of the community.

On November 12th, the BC Arts Council announced its Arts Infrastructure Program, with awards up to $250,000, more than three times the usual amount made available through this program. The purpose of this funding is for arts organizations to acquire, construct, or renovate an arts space that will enhance the cultural capacity of the community. There are two other streams for funding as well, worth up to $25,000 for planning and research and $40,000 for acquiring specialized equipment. The deadline is 11:59 PM on Jan. 14, 2022.

The BC Arts Council will host a virtual information session for communities and organizations in the Peace-Liard Region about this program at noon on Dec. 2. This session will include insight on the AIP from Program Officers Erin Macklem and Sarah Todd, as well as a Q&A section.

This grant is a great opportunity that can make a major difference in the region. If successful, it could finance the new arts hub in Fort St. John, a permanent gallery space in Chetwynd, or much needed renovations for the Dawson Creek Art Gallery. This is the second year in a row that BCAC has released funding through this program. However, it is unclear whether it will be offered again, so it is important to seize this opportunity now.

The BC Arts Council has been working to serve rural communities better in recent years, which is why the grant qualifications are slightly relaxed for northern communities. This grant may be up to 90% of the total budget for projects based in rural and remote areas with a small population. As an example, for applicant organizations based in Dawson Creek or Fort St. John, only 10% of the budget needs to come from an additional source. Meaning $25,000 can become $250,000, which is a great investment. On the other hand, the grant can only make up to 75% of the project budget for organizations in communities that don’t qualify as rural or underserved.

These budget splits are often how arts funding works from granting bodies like the BC Arts Council, Canada Arts Council, First Peoples’ Cultural Council, and Creative BC, although the funding component is not usually as high as 90%. Grant-based awards typically cover between 50% to 75% of a project total, which is still incredibly generous. Even with a 50% split, an applicant can double their project budget. The purpose of these splits is to show that the project is feasible, and has support from more than one source. This is something that arts administrators know well, as navigating this grant system is a large part of what they do. However, this point is often lost on local governments, who don’t have close working relationships with these funding sources.

The drawback with opportunities like the the AIP is that it often requires cooperation from municipal governments, who are slow to respond. Often arts spaces are publicly owned, but operated by a non-profit. For example, the Dawson Creek Art Gallery building is owned by the City of Dawson Creek, meaning that the gallery cannot go ahead with an application like this without the city’s support. Historically, the arts have been a blind spot for our local leaders, and this oversight is leaving money on the table, to the detriment of the community.

Understandably, at any given time there are many other pressing needs demanding the attention of local politicians—the pandemic, for example. The cultural revitalization of our communities slips lower down the priority list. However, this needn’t be the case. What is needed to allocate funds efficiently is simply an understanding that the arts and its funding system is a complex industry with many opportunities that require specific expertise and knowledge to capitalize on. This is why local governments need to work closely with arts organizations, and be more responsive to them, so that when opportunities like the Arts Infrastructure Program arise, both parties are prepared to make the best of them. That way, we can bet small and win big for the communities we serve.

Do you have an artistic endeavour you would like to promote? Is there a topic you would like me to discuss? I would love to hear from you! Please email me at

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44th annual Penticton Art Auction set for early December – Penticton Western News – Penticton Western News



After almost two years of adjusting on the fly and being forced to reschedule events, the Penticton Art Gallery is set to go ahead with the 44th annual art auction on Dec. 5.

The gallery is giving people the opportunity for a sneak peek on the evening of Dec. 3 so that they can explore all the art that is being sold.

The weekend-long event doesn’t have to wait though. Online pre-bidding opened on July 26 and is set to end 24 hours prior to the start of the live auction.

This year’s event will be conducted both in-person and virtually, via Zoom, and anyone attending the live auction at the gallery will be required to show proof of vaccination.

“If you don’t have a vaccine passport and would like to arrange a private viewing, please contact the gallery and we can make alternative arrangements,” said Penticton Art Gallery Director Paul Crawford.

Among the items available for auction include Andy Warhol pieces from his “Marilyn” series. The opening bid for the Warhol items was $1,500, with an estimated value of $5,000. After Marilyn Monroe’s death in 1967, the artist began to work on his now-famous series.

This year’s auction at the gallery will contain no shortage of historic items available for sale. James Irwin’s NASA flight suit is also up for auction, with an opening bid of $4,500 and an estimated value that the gallery calls “priceless.”

A woolly mammoth tusk rounds out the gallery’s list of “priceless” items but in this case, the piece had an opening bid of $1,750.

READ MORE: Mammoth finds at 44th annual Penticton Art Gallery auction

To view the complete list of available items, the gallery asks that you visit

“The Penticton Art Gallery champions the transformative power of the Arts through an annual program of thought-provoking exhibitions,” said the gallery’s director.

Crawford said in the latest bi-monthly gallery newsletter that they’ve seen a 60 per cent reduction in revenue over the last 18 months that they had previously earned through a number of fundraising programs, amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Despite that, he told the Penticton Western News on Thursday that even though he doesn’t know what to expect out of this year’s auction, he’s excited about the gallery’s immediate future.

“As we come to the end of the year, I hope you can help support the Gallery through the purchase of one of our Soup Bowl packages, a work from our Under $500 Exhibition + Sale, Annual Art Auction, the purchase of a membership, early bird tickets to the 2022 Ignite the Arts Festival, or a charitable donation this year,” he wrote in the letter.

READ MORE: Ignite the Arts Festival gets Penticton council’s blessing and funding

Successful bidders will be notified via email within 48 hours of the auction’s closing.

The live auction begins on Dec. 5 at 1 p.m., with the deadline for registration coming on Dec. 4 at 4 p.m.

As of Nov. 25, the auction has raised $8,295, which is 33 per cent of the gallery’s goal for the event.

To register for the live auction, email

In addition, to get in on the pre-bidding festivities virtually, you can visit


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Black British painting, gay New York photography and Dr Eno will see you now – the week in art – The Guardian



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Black British painting, gay New York photography and Dr Eno will see you now – the week in art  The Guardian

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