Indigenous artists take the highlight: London Arts Council

Indigenous artists take the spotlight: London Arts Council

The London Arts Council is throwing a virtual spotlight on a project that first launched in 2020.

The Indigenous London Arts website showcases a range of projects on display at the Tourism London Welcome Center on Wellington Road South.

Eunju Yi, Executive Director of the London Arts Council, in front of a sister piece to an artwork on display at Tourism London’s Welcome Centre. (Mike Lacasse / XFM News)

“What we’ve done really fosters this alliance,” says Eunju Yi, Executive Director of the London Arts Council. “In 2015 we started these listening sessions by inviting members of the indigenous community […] to guide us on how to work in indigenous communities, particularly in the arts sector.”

Yi says the information they gleaned from these sessions has changed the direction the London Art Council has taken in relation to its operations, services and programs related to the Indigenous community.

“This Indigenous London Arts website is truly the culmination of all the years of work that the London Arts Council has actively done by actively engaging with the surrounding First Nations communities,” says Yi.

She also says they have an up-to-date roster of Indigenous artists and are actively reaching out to the Indigenous community to cultivate allies.

“We’re really trying to change the narrative of artworks. Like the anti-oppression, the anti-racism and all the colonialism [narratives]. We’re really trying to address these issues within the arts sector,” says Yi.

The London Arts Council is delighted to officially launch the Indigenous London Arts website.

This curated space was developed by Summer Bressette, former LAC curator, indigenous programming and web designer Katie Wilhelm.

Visit the website here:

— London Arts Council (@LdnArtsCouncil) June 17, 2022

The Tourism London Welcome Center project is a curated experience consisting of 13 artworks by 8 artists: Annette Sullivan, Brenda Collins, Chandra Nolan, Mike Cywink, Oscar Marroquin-Ponce, Rene Jewell and Steve Maracle.

The London Arts Council also works with various Indigenous artists to promote their future work.

“Completely new artists with new works [were selected]and what we did, after the exhibition was curated, [was] We actually nurtured a relationship by working with the artists and inviting them to further professional development opportunities,” says Yi.

They are also involved in several art projects across the city, including three sculptures and a mural, due to be unveiled next month, created by one of the artists involved in the Tourism London Welcome Center project.