May 17, 2016
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WINNIPEG’S FIRST INDIGENOUS ARTWALK: ART & CULTURE ON DISPLAY IN DOWNTOWN WINDOWS
Downtown Winnipeg ─ The Downtown Winnipeg BIZ’s Aboriginal Peoples’ Advisory Committee is pleased to launch a brand new initiative today that celebrates art and culture in Winnipeg’s downtown districts.
The Indigenous Artwalk features artwork placed in storefront windows along Portage Avenue, Graham Avenue, Garry Street, and Donald Street. The project is launching with 12 artists in 12 locations, with artwork on display for three months, from May until August. Full list of artists and locations is available at the end of this press release.
Artists were asked to create a piece of artwork to reflect the theme of “welcome” – a word that Downtown Winnipeg BIZ hopes will resonate among residents and visitors alike.
“We’re very excited about the Indigenous Artwalk,” says Stefano Grande, Executive Director of Downtown Winnipeg BIZ. “Other cities throughout North America and around the world have been featuring artwalks for many years, and this marks the first artwalk project here in Winnipeg. We’re always exploring new ways to make our downtown streets more inviting and attractive for everyone, and I can’t think of a better way than by decorating downtown windows with welcoming artwork.”
“Downtown Winnipeg is a vibrant place, with such depth of culture. Since Winnipeg has the largest urban Indigenous population in all of Canada, it just made perfect sense for us to feature Indigenous artwork in the heart of our urban centre.”
Artwork reflecting of Indigenous culture
The Downtown Winnipeg BIZ’s Aboriginal Peoples’ Advisory Committee is happy to see an initiative that promotes talented artists from the Indigenous community – especially one which has the potential to create a deeper awareness and understanding of Indigenous culture.
“Art is an expression of an artist’s identity, and through artwork, people can gain a better understanding of who the artist is,” says Sharon Redsky, a member of the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ’s Aboriginal Peoples’ Advisory Committee, and one of the artists whose work is on display in the Indigenous Artwalk. “It will be great for people to see the diversity of Indigenous culture as reflected in the artwork being featured throughout downtown Winnipeg.”
Tour entire Indigenous Artwalk and you can win a prize package!
Each of the 12 stops along the Indigenous Artwalk features information about the artist, and a description of the art piece. Each stop also features a special code – when combined, will create a sentence. Submit this sentence and be entered to win a tailor-made prize of a night-out for two in downtown Winnipeg (value of $500). Contest information is available on the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ website: downtownwinnipegbiz.com/indigenous-artwalk.
About the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ Aboriginal Peoples’ Advisory Committee
Initiated in 2014, the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ’s Aboriginal Peoples’ Advisory Committee aims to act as a formal liaison point between the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ’s Management Board and Indigenous peoples/stakeholders. In the spirit of partnership and collaboration, the objectives of this committee are two-fold: (a) to encourage feedback from Indigenous peoples on the programs led by the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ and (b) to acknowledge Indigenous history, culture, and traditions.
The BIZ’s Aboriginal Peoples’ Advisory Committee is comprised of representatives from the Aboriginal Chamber of Commerce, Manito Ahbee Festival, Red Road Lodge, Ma Mawi Wi Chi Itata Centre, Aboriginal Council of Winnipeg, Portage Place Shopping Centre, and representatives from the Downtown Winnipeg BIZ’s Management Board. The ideas, visions, and suggestions for Indigenous initiatives emanates from this core group, in addition to comprehensive engagement with the broader community.
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Emily Ormonde, Marketing & Communications Coordinator
Downtown Winnipeg BIZ
Phone: (204) 958-4626
RoseAnna Schick, RAS Creative
Indigenous Artwalk Coordinator for Downtown Winnipeg BIZ
Phone: (204) 783-7600