Experience & Event Design - Curation
As part of their Truth & Reconciliation Action Plan, KPMG hosted a unique evening reception dedicated to celebrating the heritage, culture, and achievements of Canada’s First Nations, Inuit, and Métis peoples. During the event, attendees were welcomed to experience the art and storytelling of 50 established and emerging indigenous artists from the Ontario region.
Curated by Sylvia Dreaver, a member of the Mistawasis First Nation, MASSIVart was honoured to produce, design, and program the stunning event devoted to Indigenous art. With the collaborative support of Mariah Meawasige and Dawn Saunders Dahl, the evening provided an opportunity for KPMG’s alumni and Indigenous artists to connect, learn, and establish a dialogue on the importance of Indigenous storytelling and artistic practices.
The exhibition, entitled ‘Bizindamowin’ (to learn from listening), featured a Main Exhibition with scenography inspired by the medicine wheel symbol. Further to the Main Exhibition area, a Print Shop exhibited illustrations from select artists, and an Immersive Room featuring a new media installation by Casey Koyczan provided a multi-sensory experience for attendees.
Mariah Measwasige established the visual branding of the event with a distinctively modern interpretation of the medicine wheel. The logo signifies the sacredness of the wheel, the need for a quiet mind, focus, and imagination in order to grow, and the circle at the center of the image needs to be sought out by the viewer. The exhibit’s graphic identity and colour scheme were inspired by Indigenous structures and iconography – making for a cohesive and representative experience.
The evening reception was rounded out by a music selection from Deejay Jams, cedar-infused teas from Chef Paul Owl of Tree Tea Brewing (with art from Rhonda Snowl), and a ceremony led by Elder Bluewater welcome to guests.
To build prosperity for future generations, art sales from the evening will be matched by the KPMG Foundation to fund scholarships for Indigenous students at The Ontario College of Art and Design.
Independent artists in the exhibition included the following photographers, digital media artists, illustrators, painters, and new media artists; Tracey Metallic, Barry Pottle, Claude Latour, Alexis Nanibush Pamajewong, Laura Grier, Jobena Petonoquot, Morningstar Designs, Meky Ottawa, Kaya DaKosta, Joshua Pawis-Steckley, Kaiatanoron Dumoulin Bush, Emily Kewageshig, Aedan Corey, Hotdog Water, Candace Twance, Nishina Loft, and Terry Awasish.
In addition to the independent artists exhibited, the following Canadian galleries were delighted to loan pieces from established artists; L.A. Pai Art Gallery for Barry Ace; Paul Petro Contemporary Art for Michel Dumont; Art Mûr for Sonny Assu, Nadia Myre, and Jason Baerg; Blouin Division for Caroline Monnet; and Central Art Garage for Joy T Arcand.
Feheley Fine Arts Gallery was also delighted to lend pieces to the exhibition from the following artists; Jutai Toonoo, Quamaq Iyaituk, Shuvinai Ashoona, Nicotye Samayulaie, Kudluajuk Ashoona, Qavavau Manumie, Janet Kigusiuq, Mark Igloliorte, Padloo Samayulaie, and Joe Talirunili.
The event was a great success for the artists and KPMG, offering a unique opportunity to bridge the gap between the corporate world and the Indigenous art community.
Photographer: Rebecca Tisdelle-Macias