INNOVATION & RESILIENCE
IN CANADA’S CULTURAL SECTOR

BEING Studio

Ottawa, Ontario Project: Artist Connect (Symposium): Ways of deepening conversations about disability arts in a virtual space
Discipline(s): visual arts, multidisciplinary, design

A series of online meetings that connected artist studios from across Canada that support artists with developmental disabilities.

Equity seeking: D/deaf, disabled, or live with difference
Source: Research

Link to website

Digital Cutters

National (AB base), Alberta Project: Digital Cutting Research Project
Discipline(s): design, theatre, dance, music

Innovation in costume production: designers would not have to be in the same space to fit people for costumes for theatre, dance etc.

Special impacts:

Benefits beyond the pandemic could inlcude lower costs, less waste of materials/resources, and more. While the concept came to life during and because of COVID, it is a lasting solution.

Source: Research

Link to website

Creative Users Projects

Toronto / National, Ontario Project: Accesing The Arts / Difference-Centered Design
Discipline(s): multidisciplinary, design

The development of difference-centered design (the practice of human-centered design with a critical access lens) went through a close collaboration with ReVision Centre for Art and Social Justice at Guelph. A really innovative collaboration between an arts-based action research institution, community-based partnership, that is informing Creative Users Projects business model going forward.

Special impacts:

The business implications have grown stronger as of late, after an initial lack of certainty.

Equity seeking: D/deaf, disabled, or live with difference
Source: Research

Link to website

The Canadian Design Resource

Toronto, Ontario Project: The Canadian Design Resource
Discipline(s): museums and galleries, design

We managed to completely rebrand and run a series of focus groups and user zoom calls - something we struggled w before the pandemic. The time out allowed us to regroup and really dig into our audience.

Special impacts:

We are the main hub for the creative community in Canada - we needed to get out front and listen to our fans. This process will continue after the pandemic. The lessons to share are many...but the main ones were to use this time to shift and get forward leaning, build tools to listen to your community, and to connect with makers who can help create new products and experiences.

Equity seeking: Indigenous Peoples, Racialized, 2SLGBTQIA+, D/deaf, disabled, or live with difference, Members of official language minority groups
Source: Survey

Link to website

ILDIKO NOVA

Winnipeg, Manitoba Project: Searching for Doya
Discipline(s): visual arts, multidisciplinary, design

This project is inspired by the folk tale called Doya, the Romani Fairy. This story is about historical disconnection, relocation and searching for belonging. This is a tribute for all people who are challenged by removal from home or have to relocate due to catastrophes, war or any other reasons. Also, many movements are rising, such as environmental and human rights issues. Studies are more widely published, and through stories of individuals there is a newly found awareness. Also, there is more representation to minorities, women and non-mainstream communities. One way is spreading true, reliable information and challenging current policies, especially when they disregard or hurt certain populations or areas. It takes courage and strength. Matriarchal elements of governing would offer solutions to a lot of social problems.

Special impacts:

The intended impact of this story is the encouragement itself. Life is full of unexpected changes, and models that worked before become useless. Relationships are shifting, some people move farther, others develop closer bonds. Therefore, if ties are getting loose or one faces isolation, there is still a meaning of not giving up practices, in this case, creating art. "Dance like nobody's watching; love like you've never been hurt." - says Mark Twain.
My images represent the question of how to honour traditions in a modern, cosmopolitan setting. The world is fast, and requires fast reaction from all of us in order to maintain survival. However, there is another side of our existence where we are closer to ourselves, such as creative work. Art can and can create a more peaceful dialog and through constructive depiction, awareness of human rights issues of many ethnic group might be better achieved. Women in a general sense need recognition, respect and equal opportunities.

Equity seeking: Racialized
Source: Survey

Link to website

Business and Arts NL

St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador Project: Design Thinking: Collaboration for Innovation
Discipline(s): multidisciplinary, design

Business and Arts NL is working on a design thinking project with 15 collaborators from across the technology, public and creative sectors to look at how we might situate creativity as core to the vision of a new innovation centre for the tech industry. This work has been extremely illuminating, showing some of the biases and attitudes towards the arts in the private sector, and some of the self-imposed limitations in the arts sector.

Source: Research

Link to website