Find full bios and abstracts at

Symposium schedule can be found on our website

Jim Agapito and Ervin Chartrand – Winnipeg, MB

Jim Agapito is a Filipino writer, producer, director from Winnipeg. He has worked in Canadian film and television for both broadcasters and independent productions for the past five years producing documentaries, short films, music videos and DVDs.
Ervin Chatrand is an award winning Metis filmmaker who resides in Winnipeg. He has directed multiple dramatic shorts, music videos and documentaries. Prior to film, Chartrand was a gang leader who reformed his life after being incarcerated. He continues to speak to youth about his experiences.
Read more about Jim Agapito and Ervin Chartrand here

Art City – Winnipeg, MB

Art City is West Broadway’s community art studio dedicated to providing high-quality and free-of-charge art programming to those who need or wish to express themselves creatively.
Read more about Art City

Jody BaltessenWinnipeg, MB

Jody Baltessen has been City Archivist/Records Manager for the City of Winnipeg since October, 2007.  Before that, she spent five years as Senior Archivist for the City of Winnipeg Archives and twelve years with the Archives of Manitoba.
Read Jody Baltessen’s full bio

Larry Beasley C.M., B.A., M.A., C.M.I.P. – British Columbia

Larry Beasley is one of the world’s top urban planners.  He helped establish the City of Vancouver as one of the most livable cities in the world.Among his recent initiatives are new land use and transportation plans that are dramatically reshaping Vancouver’s inner city. Beasley is an adjunct professor at the University of British Columbia in the School of Community and Regional Planning and lectures widely elsewhere.
Read Larry Beasley’s full bio here

Hazel Borys Winnipeg, MB

Hazel Borys manages the business side of PlaceMakers, and contributes to policy planning, including community-based economic development plans.
Read Hazel Borys’ full bio

Stephen Borys Winnipeg, MB

Dr. Stephen Borys is the Director of the Winnipeg Art Gallery and holds the post of Scholar in Residence in the School of Art at the University of Manitoba.  Dr. Borys has organized numerous exhibitions, written accompanying catalogues and scholarly articles, and lectured across North America.
Read Stephen Borys’ full bio

Patricia Bovey, FRSA Winnipeg, MB

Winnipeg-based art historian, author, consultant, and former director of the Winnipeg Art Gallery and Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, Bovey teaches art history, cultural policy and arts management at the University of Winnipeg.
Read Patricia Bovey’s full bio

Joanne Bristol Winnipeg, MB

Joanne Bristol trained as an artist and has an MFA from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design (Halifax, Canada). Her work, presented through exhibitions, performances, lectures and writing, investigates relationships between nature and culture, and between the body and language.
Read Joanne Bristol’s full bio

Donald ClintonNew York, NY

Donald Clinton, AIA, MRAIC, LEED AP, is a partner at Cooper, Robertson & Partners, a New York architectural and urban design firm. He led the firm’s work on the redesign of Fountain Square in Cincinnati. the Lincoln Center Master Plan, the Sony Imageworks headquarters in Los Angeles,  and master plans for the medical centers at Duke and Columbia Universities.
Read Donald Clinton’s full bio

Lancelot CoarWinnipeg, MB

Lancelot Coar is a professor of architecture at the University of Manitoba, and a resident researcher at the Center for Architectural Structures and Technology (CAST), specializing in the research and development of innovative structural systems using conventional building materials.
Read Lancelot Coar’s full bio

Heather CramWinnipeg, MB
Heather Cram MALA, FCSLA, is a principal of Hilderman Thomas Frank Cram and a senior designer with over 40 years of experience in the fields of design, landscape architecture and planning.
Read Heather Cram’s full bio

Sarah CrawleyWinnipeg, MB

Sarah Crawley is a visual artist who lives and works in Winnipeg.  In her photo-based art practice she explores aspects of memory, identity and non-verbal communication and is interested in objects or situations that indicate the human touch – things made or done by hand.
Read Sarah Crawley’s full bio

Leah Decter Winnipeg, MB
Based in Winnipeg, Leah Decter is an interdisciplinary artist working in installation, sculpture, video, photography, performance and socially engaged practices. She has exhibited widely in Canada including at the Winnipeg Art Gallery, Grunt Gallery, Trinity Square Video and the Dunlop Art Gallery, and internationally in the US, UK, Australia and Europe.
Read Leah Decter’s full bio here

Shawna Dempsey and Lorri Millan

Experimental, passionate, and irreverent, Shawna Dempseyand Lorri Millan are two of Canada’s best known performance artists.
Read Shawna Dempsey and Lorri Millan’s full bio here

Jino Distasio Winnipeg, MB

Dr. Distasio joined the University of Winnipeg in 1999, serving as Director of the Institute of Urban Studies since 2003. For over a decade, Jino has worked in Winnipeg’s inner city as well as exploring Canadian and global urban issues.
Read Jino Distasio’s full bio

Herb EnnsWinnipeg, MB

Herbert Enns is Professor of Architecture, former Head of the Department of Architecture, University of Manitoba, and Director of the Experimental Media Research Group (EMRG). EMRG is a new trans-disciplinary digital technology initiative of the University of Manitoba.
Read Herbert Enns’ full bio

Robert Enright Winnipeg, MB
Robert Enright is the senior contributing editor for Border Crossings magazine and holds the University Research Chair in Art Theory and Criticism at the University of Guelph, where he teaches in the Graduate Program.
Read Robert Enright’s full bio

Simon Evans – United Kingdom

Simon Evans is an entrepreneur, consultant and advocate for cultural business. His career includes events production, performance, venue development, cultural tourism, mentoring and business-building. He is currently Director of Creative Clusters, the international conference and network for the creative economy.
Read Simon Evan’s full bio here

Christine Fellows – Winnipeg, MB

Christine Fellows is a singer/songwriter based in Winnipeg, Manitoba.She was Artist-in-Residence at Le Musée de Saint-Boniface in Winnipeg throughout 2009, creating repertoire for a commissioned multidisciplinary performance project entitled Reliquary/Reliquaire, which was presented in a series of free, public performances in the beautiful chapel at the Museum.
Read Christine Fellows’ full bio here

Jon Paul FiorentinoWinnipeg, MB / Montreal, QC

Jon Paul Fiorentino is a writer and editor. His first novel is Stripmalling (ECW, 2009) which was shortlisted for the 2009 Hugh MacLennan Award for Fiction. His most recent book of poetry is Indexical Elegies (Coach House Books, 2010).
Read Jon Paul Fiorentino’s full bio here

Eric FischlNew York, NY

Eric Fischl is an internationally acclaimed American painter and sculptor. His artwork is represented in many distinguished museums throughout the world and has been featured in over one thousand publications. His extraordinary achievements throughout his career have made him of one of the most influential figurative painters of the late 20th and early 21st centuries.
Read Eric Fischl’s full bio

Alan FreemanWinnipeg, MB / United Kingdom

Alan Freeman is an economist who works for GLA Economics, the Mayor of London’s Economic Analysis Unit. He is a research fellow in the School of City Planning at the University of Manitoba.
Read Alan Freeman’s full bio here

hannah_gWinnipeg, MB

hannah_g is a multi-disciplary artist and cultural worker based in Winnipeg.  She uses storytelling, poster-making, stickering, chalking, soundscapes, and writing to draw attention to everyday enchantment and issues of social justice.  She is currently the Program Coordinator of the artist-run centre, aceartinc.
Read more about hannah_g

Noam Gonick Winnipeg, MB

Noam Gonick explores a variety of iconoclastic issues and positions surrounding radical politics and queer sexuality, exploring Utopian hippie cults, Aboriginal street gangs, labour uprisings, stockbroker meltdowns, and prison architecture — using film, TV and installation art.
Read Noam Gonick’s full bio

Carolyn Gray Winnipeg, MB

Carolyn Gray is a theatre artist, and a founding member of Adhere and Deny Object Puppet Theatre.  She won the Manitoba Day Award for Excellence in Archival Research for her play The Elmwood Visitation (Scirocco) and the John Hirsch Most Promising Manitoba Writer award. 
Read Carolyn Gray’s full bio

Jon Hawkes Australia

Sometime circus strongman, underground press editor, lighthouse keeper and bookseller, Jon is the author of the groundbreaking ‘The Fourth Pillar of Sustainability: culture’s essential role in public planning’ (Common Ground, 01) and is one of Australia’s leading commentators on cultural policy.  ‘Fourth pillar thinking’ has spread worldwide, with Jon making presentations in the USA, Canada, Spain and New Zealand.
Read Jon Hawke’s full bio here

Robert Houle – Toronto, ON

Robert Houle is a contemporary Anishnabe artist who has played a significant role in retaining and defining First Nations identity in Canada. He was born in St. Boniface, Manitoba and currently lives and works in Toronto.

Read Robert Houle’s full bio here

Catherine Hunter Winnipeg, MB

Catherine Hunter is a poet and novelist whose practice is deeply grounded in her home town of Winnipeg.
Read more about Catherine Hunter

Jennifer KeesmaatWinnipeg, MB

Jennifer Keesmaat, MES, MCIP, RPP is a founding partner of Office for Urbanism, and more recently, Dialog.  As an urban planner with a distinct interest in the political processes that shape cities, communities and places, Jennifer’s planning approach recognizes the strategic importance of consensus building to successful plan implementation.
Read Jennifer Keesmat’s full bio

Paula Kelly Winnipeg, MB

Paula Kelly is an award-winning Manitoba filmmaker whose documentaries and dramatic shorts have screened at festivals around the world.
Read Paula Kelly’s full bio

Serena KeshavjeeWinnipeg, MB

Dr. Serena Keshavjee is an Associate Professor of Art History at the University of Winnipeg, where she coordinates the Art History program.
Read Serena Keshavjee’s bio

Anthony Kiendl Winnipeg, MB

Anthony Kiendl is Director of Plug In Institute of Contemporary Art. He is Curator of Contour: Biennale of the Moving Image, Mechelen, Belgium in 2011. In 2010 he curated an exhibition as part of Nuit Blanche (Toronto).
Read Anthony Kiendl’s full bio

Mark KingwellToronto, ON

Mark Kingwell is a Professor of Philosophy at the University of Toronto and a contributing editor of Harper’s Magazine.  He is the author of fifteen books, and he is currently at work on a book about 21st-century democracy.

Read Mark Kingwell’s full bio here

Barbara Koenen – Chicago, IL

Barbara Koenen is an artist and a cultural planner for the City of Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs. She has created innovative programs to support individual artists and art organizations.

Read Barbara Koenen’s full bio

Jim LaskoChicago, IL

Jim Lasko is an artist concerned with public space.  To that end, he has applied his formal training as a theater maker to create large-scale public spectacles, parades and site specific performances, as well as interactive exhibits and installations and traditional theater shows.
Read Jim Lasko’s full bio

Matthew LennonHouston, TX

Matthew Lennon is the founder and has been the curator and director of HorseHead Projects since 1987.   HorseHead is a vehicle for emerging and midcareer artists; a platform for temporary art installations and public realm practices; and a program that grew to be international in scope.
Read Matthew Lennon’s full bio

Cheryl L’Hirondelle – Vancouver, BC

Cheryl L’Hirondelle (aka Waynohtêw, Cheryl Koprek) is a nomadic mixed-blood multi and interdisciplinary artist, singer/songwriter and curator. Her creative practice is an investigation of the junction of a cree worldview (nêhiyawin) in contemporary time and space.

Read Cheryl L’Hirondelle’s full bio here

Tricia Logan Winnipeg, MB

Tricia Logan recently joined the team at the Canadian Museum for Human Rights in the department of Research, Content and Scholarship as a Researcher.  A focus of Tricia’s research at the museum is Indigenous peoples and Indigenous rights.
Read Tricia Logan’s full bio

Brent Lott Winnipeg, MB

Brent Lott received his early training at the professional programs of both the RWB and The School of Contemporary Dancers (SCD). After graduating from SCD in 1990 Brent began his professional dance career with Dance Collective followed by Ruth Cansfield Dance and Winnipeg’s Contemporary Dancers (WCD).
Read Brent Lott’s full bio

Janine MarchsessaultToronto, ON

Janine Marchessault is a Canada Research Chair in Art, Digital Media and Globalization at York University. She is a founding member of Public Access, a curatorial collective that seeks to experiment with the public places available for the display and experience of art works.
Read Janine Marchsessault’s full bio

Dyan Marie Toronto, ON

Dyan Marie creates projects and initiatives that explore urban issues and contemporary cultural experience, she has originated public space and walking projects as interventions, public art, green space and events and has initiated a number of cultural and community organizations.
Read Dyan Marie’s full bio

Immony Men and Maegan BroadhurstMontreal, QC

Immony Men and Maegan Broadhurst have collaborated and developed several different multimedia productions and installations in Montreal.
Read Immony Men and Maegan Broadhurst’s bio

Lize MogelNew York

Lize Mogel is an interdisciplinary artist who creates and disseminates counter-cartography‹ maps and mappings that produce new understandings of social and political issues. She has mapped public parks in Los Angeles; cultural migration patterns in Idaho; and future territorial disputes in the Arctic.
Read Lize Mogel’s full bio

Sharon B. Moore – Toronto, ON

Sharon B. Moore is known for her highly magnetic worlds of movement. She creates as a choreographer, movement coach, dancer and filmmaker for both stage and screen.

Nils Norman United Kingdom

Nils Norman works across the disciplines of public art, architecture and urban planning. His projects challenge notions of the function of public art and the efficacy of much urban planning and large-scale regeneration.
Read Nils Norman’s full bio

Debbie Patterson – Winnipeg Art Ambassador (Theatre) – Winnipeg, MB

Debbie Patterson is a Winnipeg playwright, director and actor. Currently she is serving as Artistic Associate at Prairie Theatre Exchange and sits on the Arts Advisory Panel of the Manitoba Arts Council. She is an alumnus of the National Theatre School of Canada and a founding member of Shakespeare in the Ruins (SIR).

Read Debbie Patterson’s full bio

Milena Placentile – Winnipeg, MB

Milena Placentile is a Winnipeg-based curator and writer. he recently served as Acting Director of the University of Winnipeg’s Gallery 1C03, and she is presently a curator in residence at Konstfack University of Art, Craft, and Design in Stockholm.

Read Milena Placentile’s full bio here

Dominique Rey – Winnipeg Arts Ambassador (Visual Art)Winnipeg, MB

Like many contemporary artists, Dominique Rey works in a number of media. She is a painter, photographer, video artist, and performance artist.
Read Dominique Rey’s full bio

Ali RobsonWinnipeg, MB

Ali is a contemporary dance artist from Winnipeg. Since 2004 she has been studying and performing contact improvisation in Vancouver with EDAM under the direction of Peter Bingham. In Winnipeg she has worked with TRIP Dance Company performing in Herding Instinct and the art of displacement.
Read Ali Robson’s full bio

Lee Rodney Detroit, MI

Lee Rodney is Associate Professor of Art History and Visual Culture at the University of Windsor. She has written on contemporary art, cultural theory and visual culture in a range of books and journals.
Read Lee Rodney’s full bio

Gus Rogerson New York, NY

Gus Rogerson is the artistic director of The 52nd Street Project, a not-for-profit theater company in the Hell’s Kitchen neighborhood of Manhattan that brings kids from the neighborhood together with adult theater professionals to create original theater and to establish long-term mentoring relationships.
Read Gus Rogerson’s full bio

John K. Samson – Winnipeg Art Ambassador (Music) – Winnipeg, MB

John K. Samson is the singer and songwriter for The Weakerthans, whose five albums have been universally praised by fans and critics alike. John’s poetry and prose has appeared in Matrix Magazine, Geist, The Believer, and Post-Prairie—an Anthology of New Poetry. He’s also the managing editor and co-founder of a small publishing house, Arbeiter Ring Publishing.

Read John K. Samson’s full bio

Cyrus SmithWinnipeg, MB

Cyrus Smith is a Winnipeg artist who works in a variety of disciplines. He prides himself on being able to make most things into art.
Read Cyrus Smith’s full bio

Mark J. SternPhiladelphia, PA

Mark J. Stern is Professor of Social Welfare and History and Co-Director of the Urban Studies program at the University of Pennsylvania, where he has taught since 1980.
Read Mark J. Stern’s full bio here

Will Straw – Montreal, QC

Will Straw is Professor in the Department of Art History and Communications Studies at McGill University and currently serves as the Department’s Chair.

Read Will Straw’s full bio here

Natasha Torres-Garner – Winnipeg Art Ambassador (Dance) – Winnipeg, MB

As an accomplished Winnipeg dance performer, Natasha Torres-Garner worked with Winnipeg’s Contemporary Dancers as a company dancer for 6 years and has performed in a number of projects as an independent dancer. Torres-Garner is also a founding member and the Organization Director of Young Lungs Dance Exchange, a Winnipeg-based community organization offering performance and choreographic opportunity to emerging dance artists.

Read Natasha Torres-Garner’s full bio

Michael Van Rooy – Winnipeg Arts Ambassador (Literary Arts) – Winnipeg, MB

Michael Neelak Van Rooy is an author, administrator, and teacher. He has written three books in the critically acclaimed Monty Haaviko thriller series set in Winnipeg. Michael is the Program Coordinator for the Writers’ Collective for Professional and Developing Writers, a mentor for the Arts and Cultural Industries Fiction program, the publicist for the THIN AIR Winnipeg International Writers Festival and the Administrator for the Canadian Mennonite University School of Writing. He is also the Vice-President of the Board of Directors of Prairie Fire Press.

Read Michael Van Rooy’s full bio

Graham van Wyk – United Kingdom

Graham van Wyk is a member of the core network of the Social Sculpture Research Unit at Oxford Brookes University in the UK where he is exploring ways to take the social sculpture ideas of Joseph Beuys into wider fields of inquiry and practice.
Read Graham van Wyk’s full bio

Katherena VermetteWinnipeg, MB
Katherena Vermette is a Metis writer of poetry and fiction. Her work has appeared in several literary magazines and compilations.
Read Katherena Vermette’s full bio

Tricia Wasney – Winnipeg, MB

Tricia Wasney holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Film Studies and a Master of Landscape Architecture degree, both from the University of Manitoba. She has worked in Winnipeg’s art community for many years in various roles of administrator, juror, board member and artist/writer.
Read Tricia Wasney’s full bio

John Waters
Baltimore, MD

A life-long Baltimorean, Waters’ movies are all set in Baltimore, Maryland, where he still lives.
Read more about John Waters

Winnipeg ‘s Contemporary Dancers

Winnipeg ‘s Contemporary Dancers’ goal is to create a place on the local, national and international arts landscape that enables vital intersections, linkages and exchange among dance creators, dance interpreters, spectators and communities.
Read more about Winnipeg’s Contemporary Dancers and Random Acts of Dance


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