SA Talks: Vacancies for the Arts in Scarborough
1859 Kingston Road
Join us on Thursday, March 30, for a panel discussion about the vacancies (and potential for) arts spaces in Scarborough. The discussion will be moderated by Sasha Kovacs. Panellists include:
CLAIRE HOPKINSONDirector and CEO, Toronto Arts Council and Toronto Arts FoundationClaire Hopkinson is recognized for her notable leadership, her abilities to forge collaborations and consensus and her inspiring vision to connect communities to the arts.
As Director & CEO of Toronto Arts Council and Toronto Arts Foundation since 2005, she has led these sister organizations into a phase of transformative growth in funding and impact, innovation in strategy and delivery, and has brought about a greater understanding of art and artists’ roles in Toronto. Under her leadership the Neighbourhood Arts Network grew from an idea to include over 1,600 community engaged arts members. Claire has developed partnerships with Toronto’s Library, School and Museum systems to further the reach of the arts into underserved neighbourhoods and launched Arts in The Parks in 2016 with 200 free arts events in parks across Toronto. To foster leadership development, she initiated a pioneering partnership with the Banff Centre to launch the TAC Cultural Leaders Lab. A recent initiative, the Creative Champions Network is helping board volunteers become more effective advocates.
Prior to TAC, Claire spent over 25 years commissioning, developing and producing works of opera and theatre while at the helm of leading edge arts organizations. No stranger to risk and experimentation, she cut her teeth as on such new works as R. Murray Schafer’s site specific, experiential, night long opera RA. Her volunteer roles included Co-Chair of the Expo Canada 2025 Steering Committee, Founding Chair of Opera.ca, Vice Chair of Opera America, and co-founder and President of Creative Trust.
Claire is the recipient of the Governor General’s Meritorious Service Medal (2016), Theatre Ontario’s Sandra Tulloch Award for Innovation in the Arts (2006) and the national M. Joan Chalmers Award for Arts Administration (2001). She speaks at numerous local, national and international gatherings.
HEELA OMARKHAILManager of Community Partnerships, The
Heela Omarkhail is
Manager of Community Partnerships at The Daniels Corporation, one of Canada’s
largest and pre-eminent builder/developers. Heela is responsible for Daniels’
community development portfolio working closely with a broad range of partners
and stakeholders. She oversees initiatives that look beyond the bricks and
mortar to ensure that the social, cultural and economic infrastructures of
communities built by Daniels are as strong as the new buildings.
partnered with Toronto Community Housing to revitalize Regent Park, a 69-acre
neighbourhood in Toronto’s Downtown East. The revitalization is being looked at
around the world as the gold standard by which challenged urban neighbourhoods
can be re-imagined as healthy, sustainable communities. Heela leads Daniels’
social infrastructure work on the ground in Regent Park.
Heela has an
Honours Bachelor of Arts Degree, specializing in History and Political Science
from the University of Toronto.
ALYSSA FEARONCurator, NO VACANCYAlyssa Fearon is an arts educator, independent curator and digital marketing strategist. As a graduate of York University’s MBA & MA Art History dual degree program, Alyssa’s research and academic endeavors have won several awards including the SSHRC Joseph Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Scholarship.
A first generation Canadian of Jamaican heritage, Alyssa was born and raised in the Toronto suburb of Scarborough and now bases her creative practice in the community. Alyssa currently works in marketing at the Art Gallery of Ontario and her independent practice combines community building with art, education and social justice.
--------------SA Talks: Vacancies for the Arts in Scarborough is part of NO VACANCY, an exhibition that explores the vibrant history of Kingston Road’s once-bustling motel strip and the evolving use of the motel spaces today. Through archival photographs paired with contemporary artworks and a participatory installation, NO VACANCY tells the stories of places and the people left behind by neighbourhood gentrification and evolution.
NO VACANCY is presented by Scarborough Arts in partnership with Myseum of Toronto and the Scarborough Historical Society as part of Myseum of Toronto's Myseum Intersections Festival 2017.
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