WAG and Artist/Curator Jaimie Isaac Awarded Canada Council Grant for Aboriginal Curatorial Residency

Winnipeg, Manitoba, June 19, 2015: The Winnipeg Art Gallery is pleased to announce that artist and curator Jaimie Isaac has been named the WAG’s new Aboriginal Curatorial Resident. Starting in September 2015, the two-year position is the result of a successful grant application to the Canada Council for the Arts.

Isaac’s work will support the WAG mission to help people see and experience more through art with a special focus on Canadian and Indigenous arts. Planned activities include: developing exhibition programming and partnerships with local organizations and Indigenous communities; and acquiring contemporary Indigenous art for the WAG collection. The exhibitions will celebrate Indigenous strength as well as confront realities affecting Indigenous and non-Indigenous people.

“This collaboration between the Winnipeg Art Gallery and Jaimie Isaac will inspire dialogue in our community to educate, critique, and celebrate the complexities of Canadian identity, Indigenous culture, and issues that motivate art production today,” says Dr. Stephen Borys, WAG Director & CEO. “We thank the Canada Council for supporting this important position, and are thrilled to welcome such a talented individual to our team.”

Isaac holds a BA in Art History as well as an Arts and Cultural Management Certificate from the University of Winnipeg. Her Masters thesis from the University of British Columbia Okanagan focused on decolonizing curatorial praxis; mapping the agency and aesthetics of Indigenous Curatorial Praxis within contemporary Canadian art. She also completed the Mentoring Artists for Women’s Art (MAWA) mentorship program. Isaac’s work experience includes the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network, and the Arts and Cultural Industries of Manitoba as the Aboriginal programs and outreach manager. She has worked in art collections management, arts education and workshops, and held various roles in art administration.

Working in these diverse areas has informed and influenced Isaac’ career as a freelance curator and interdisciplinary artist. She has published essays, presented at national and international conferences, participated in artist residencies, and collaborated, curated, and exhibited work nationally. Isaac is a founding member of The Ephemerals Collective, an all female Indigenous arts collective. She has served on juries and committees, and volunteered on the boards of Urban Shaman Gallery, Aboriginal Curatorial Collective, National Indigenous New Media Coalition, and Aboriginal Music Manitoba Inc.

“The Winnipeg Art Gallery has an important history in regards to Indigenous arts in Canada,” states Jaimie Isaac. “I look forward to working with the WAG to develop an ongoing presence for Indigenous art and artists. A big part of the residency will be to engage and collaborate with Indigenous communities to create exhibitions and programming that are meaningful, relevant and dynamic. I am grateful to the WAG and the Canada Council for this exciting opportunity.”

The Aboriginal Curatorial Residency is part of an overarching institutional plan to provide enhanced recognition of First Nations, Metis, and Inuit artists within the WAG mission. This is an important step towards the creation of the Inuit Art Centre that will include all Indigenous peoples.

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For more information or to prearrange interviews, please contact:
Catherine Maksymiuk
Manager, Media & Marketing
Winnipeg Art Gallery

Tammy Sawatzky
Public Relations Coordinator
Winnipeg Art Gallery

The Winnipeg Art Gallery is a cultural advocate – a lens and forum – helping people see and experience more through art. Playing a vital role in the community, engaging and enriching people of all ages and backgrounds through art and culture, the Winnipeg Art Gallery thrives as a creative, innovative, and accessible place for learning, discovery, and inspiration.

The WAG holds in trust the world’s largest public collection of contemporary Inuit art. Using the art as a vehicle, the creation of the Inuit Art Centre allows the WAG to further celebrate and engage with Inuit and Indigenous cultures through exhibition, research, education, and art making. It will also house the WAG’s nationally recognized Studio art and learning program.



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