Category Archives: Micro-grant Recipients

Micro-grant Recipients 2016

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Aaron Lal: Youth from Silversprings will design and produce their own hooded sweatshirts that will promote messages of anti racism, cultural empowerment, and self-expression. Scarborough-Agincourt (39)

Alexandra Iorgu: Creating a collective art installation using clay as a medium involving people all ages from the local Community Centre Franklin Horner, LAMP Early Years, Alderwood Library Branch and the Sir Adam Beck Junior School. The project will be displayed at the Alderwood Library and Sir Adam Beck Junior School. Etobicoke-Lakeshore (6)

Carla Soto: Facilitating multidisciplinary workshops for children to design customes, learn storytelling, drama, dance, music and handcraft related to a folkloric Venezuelan festival, The Dancing Devils of Yare. Toronto Centre-Rosedale (27)

Gloria O’koye: ‘Unspoken Vocals’ is a program to engage youth ages 14-17 to learn the art of poetry, gain confidence in public speaking, art of storytelling & create meaningful relationships. The program will host a series of informative discussion and workshops. Scarborough-Rouge River (41)

Jacqueline Comrie Garrido: Revitalizing a high traffic patient waiting room or family common area at the Toronto East General Hospital through the production, and installation of a colourful, high quality art mural. Don Valley West (25)

Jaicyea Smith: Belly dancing workshops for young women addressing, health, wellness and body image issues in the Lawrence Heights community or elsewhere. Special guests each week from a variety of fields (fitness, music, broadcasting, extreme sports, etc.) Eglinton-Lawrence (15)

Jasmine Gui: Creating an interdisciplinary showcase -pan-Asian, launch the second issue of the magazine LooseLeaf and creating a communal meal sharing experience. Toronto Centre-Rosedale (27)

Jose Angel Olivares: Painting a small indoor or outdoor mural to portray his home country Costa Rica, his love for Canada and also to raise awareness of the artistic abilities of people living with autism. York South-Weston (11)

Keisha James: Producing and curating a multi-media gallery exhibit for young, emerging artists 16-35 years of age from across Toronto. Parkdale-High Park (13)

Lynx Sainte-Marie: Creating an arts-based writing workshop series to engage black youth ages 18-24 who identify as “spoonies”: individuals who live with various forms of disability/chronic illness. Etobicoke North (2)

Magda Arturo & Julian Restrepo: Reconnecting second-generation Latin Americans living in Toronto to their roots by creating an interactive movable mural indoors in the St.Clair & Lansdowne neighbourhood. Trinity-Spadina (20)

Nazanin Khani: Raising awareness about breast cancer by creating and exhibiting four sculptural pieces based on the experience of breast cancer survivors in Toronto. Trinity-Spadina (20)

Vincentia Amoako: Photographing the environment of the Neptune Neighbourhood and their young people presenting it in an empowering and beautifying exhibit. Eglinton-Lawrence (15)


ANTHONY SARACINO is supported to create a visual arts series illustrating themes of religion, politics, gender, and environmental destruction with the aim to create space for arguments and counter arguments that explore transgressions within institutions of control, and their effects on contemporary thinking.

BLACK JACK LEEMY is supported to create a 5-song EP fusing genres of hip-hop, rockabilly, flamenco, grunge, reggae, doo-wop, jazz, and ska, amongst other diverse genres with the goal of enlightening the shadows in our society. The songs will be based on experiences growing up in an at-risk neighbourhood, and the systemic oppressions associated with these communities.

BEE FAHEL is supported to produce a music demo entitled Red Skies and a Blue Moon. The music will be composed with guitar and cello with the aim of taking the cello out of the traditional classical setting and introducing those sounds to a wider audience, specifically to those living on the margins.

BECK GILMER-OSBORNE is supported to create a project entitled Sorry Not SRY, a photo-sculptural installation that explores the science and contemporary cultural manifestations of the sex-determining gene, SRY, within a transgender aesthetic.

CHRIS CASTELLO is supported to produce a 3-song EP entitled The Three Day Affair, a collection of upbeat R&B songs about the beginning and end of a romantic relationship.

COCHISE BURGESS is supported to create a series of self-portraits based on the artist’s sketches that will be transformed into screen prints.

ALEXANDRE SALES-ESTRAGODINHO and AUDU DANIEL OJOCHIDE are supported to create a project entitled Change is Constant, Looking to the Future, a series of 4 collaborative paintings that explore ideas of change.

DANIÈLE DENNIS is supported to create a project entitled Striking Scarborough. A series of piñatas will be produced in collaboration with a collective of Scarborough artists and mounted in various public locations to engage the public in the message that Scarborough is worth being celebrated.

DAVIIID JAY is supported to produce a 7-song hip-hop EP that will explore themes of judgment, interpersonal relationships, exclusions, and double-standards.

DANIEL PESSOLE is supported to create a project called Forever being between lost and found. The mixed-media pieces will, through chaotic geometric structures, illustrate our cyber footprint and online presence as an extension of ego.

ELI HOWEY is supported to produce a project entitled It Was Always the Weather, a large-scale etching accompanied by a series of comics about two non-binary trans characters in a North American city, exploring the notion of property as a means of organized surveillance and control.

ERUM KHAN is supported to produce a documentary film based on the artist’s family, examining questions around retaining cultural identity after immigrating to Canada, exploring what was gained and what was lost, and cultural assimilation.

ELRIC HICKS is supported to produce a jewelry series entitled Man Made Marvels. Rings, necklaces, and pendants will incorporate lab-created rubies, emeralds, and sapphires.

GNARLY CHARLY is supported to produce a mixtape called Out Tha Gutta, featuring songs inspired by old-school hip-hop, as well as rap and trap.

GAETAN GENESSE is supported to produce a comic book entitled Les Contes de la Modite Misère; La Vielle Plante Bleu. The story follows a punk rock drug user who hunts birds for food while squatting in the sewers of Montreal.

JUST JOHN was supported to produce an EP entitled Renaissance Boy, a collection of stories about growing up in Scarborough. The songs will explore ideas of achieving dreams, self-empowerment, embracing difference, insecurity, and the ability of individuals to create their own reality.

JAH GREY is supported to produce a series of photographs exploring themes of masculinity and masculine stereotypes as it relates to vulnerability, while illustrating the struggle of the idealized norm vs. men who don’t fit into hyper-masculine stereotypes.

JASON JAMAAL is supported to create a mixed-media triptych about the racialization of public transit in North York, Etobicoke, and Scarborough. The work will explore how poor city-planning isolates and disenfranchises communities, and the failure of elected officials to address the needs of the working poor.

MASCOT is supported to produce a 9-song hip-hop EP entitled Background Act. The music will stem from the roots of boom bap, and lyrical content will discuss subjects of poverty, mental health, homophobia, and self-worth.

KELSEY RIDEOUT is supported to produce a short film combining performance art, still photography, poetry, and audio interviews that will explore the concept of voice and it’s relationship to loss as it relates to the death of the artist’s father.

KAMIKA PETERS is supported to create 3 mixed-media panels using acrylic paint, casting resin, and wool. As an abstract manifestation of the artist’s inner self, the work will illustrate conversations of spirituality, aura, coming of age, the complexity of navigating the binary, and the disillusion of linear livelihood.

KATELYN GALLUCCI is supported to produce a project entitled Mapping the Future. The visual piece will incorporate natural dyes and experimental photography techniques, and aims to investigate the desire to collapse time and create a clear path to the future.

MAANII OAKES is supported to produce a series of oil paintings illustrating displacement from traditional territory, and the cycles of animal and plant life, with the goal of preserving land-based teaching and traditional knowledge in spite of attempts to assimilate the far north, specifically James Bay.

STAR is supported to create a zine entitled Everything & All at Once, a collection of short stories and visual art exploring topics such as gender, sexuality, class, power, identity, and expression through both a personal and political lens.

MICHAEL MORALES is supported to create an album entitled Sincerilly, a collection of rap, spoken word, and vocal music produced in collaboration with artists from Toronto, Philadelphia, and Brazil.

NOMADSLAND is supported to produce a dance video featuring outcasts of Toronto’s dance scene. The artist will produce an original soundtrack to accompany the choreography.

NATHAN BAYA is supported to produce an album entitled Reasons to Grind. The collection of songs will illustrate the artist’s “reasons to grind” such as financial instability, the struggle to support a family, and the pursuit of education.

PARKER DIRKS is supported to create a project incorporating silkscreen and ceramics as a reference to the fragility of social constructs and the human tendency to mirror systems of oppression and capitalism, while examining the artist’s relationship to masculinity.

PIERRE PHARAOH is supported to produce an EP entitled Dipped in Gasoline, a concept album sonically and narratively set in medieval times, incorporating soundscapes of old- world battles along with medieval instruments such as a Hurdy-Gurdy. Themes of love, money, betrayal, jealously, and trust will be explored.

PHILLIP SAUNDERS is supported to create a visual art series entitled Visual Implications of the 12 Zodiacal Archetypes. Drawing on the artist’s work in astrology, the series will serve as a visual platform for the viewer to understand the implications of astrology and its many elemental correspondences as they relate to us as human beings.

SAMPREETH RAO is supported to produce a short experimental documentary using the transience of nature as a metaphor for the impact of age and responsibility on the lives of young people. The film will follow a young musician on a series of hikes through a forest.

SUVIANA is supported to produce an spoken word EP entitled Adolescence featuring stories of adolescent life with the intention of sharing this material with youth in the artist’s community.

SHANTEL MILLER is supported to continue work on a visual art series entitled Side Profile. The work will explore perceived identity as it relates to postmodern blackness through depicting images of young black men. The work aims to evoke critical thinking on our perceptions of the black figure.

SHELDON KEEN is supported to produce a spoken word mixtape with the underlying message of “think before you do”. The artist will produce hardcopy CDs accompanied by visual art.

TAMIR is supported to produce an EP entitled The Hudson. The collection of autobiographical songs are inspired by the artist’s experience in public school, and will serve as a document of personal evolution and self-discovery.

TEDDY OSEI is supported to create a large-scale collage in the form of a timeline that will depict significant historical events such as the Dessert Storm war, the collapse of the Berlin Wall, 9/11 in New York, and other events relating to civil rights, scientific discoveries, and more.

YASMINE IBRAHIM is supported to produce a solo album entitled No Squad in the Wild. The lyrical content will illustrate struggles in artist’s community, and experiences with LGBTQ identity.

YAEL DE GALE is supported to create a series of illustrations of traditionally styled pin- up models, intended to subvert associations with these kinds of images, in which women of colour are rarely featured. The images will incorporate themes of hip-hop, Afro punk, Afro futurism, nature, pop culture, social media, sex, and spirituality.

YUNG KOFI is supported to create a project entitled A Young G’s Perspective, a series of paintings and drawings exploring world issues such as racism, sexism, poverty, and capitalism, and is intended to speak out against the colonization and assimilation of African peoples.

BEXK is supported with a Materials Bursary to purchase a sewing machine and develop work in fashion arts.

CECILIA TEKLA SYDOR ESTABLE is supported with a Materials Bursary to develop visual artwork for a children’s book.

DENISE BOATENG is supported with a Materials Bursary to purchase materials and develop work in fashion arts.

JUAN SAAVEDRA is supported with a Materials Bursary to develop the story for a graphic novella, as well as the accompanying visual art.
MOHAMED YUSUF is supported with a Materials Bursary to purchase a camera and develop a practice in photography.


Coreen Gilligan and Sonja Thursby, Co­Founders of Art Village, are supported to establish a weekly visual arts open studio at Cornerstone Shelter, working towards an exhibition involving the larger Oakwood community.

Melanie Fernandez ­Alvares i s supported to create Searching for Stories in the Everyday, a four ­session creative process, with story­telling objects and theatre, with a small group of adults in Central Etobicoke.

Aitak Sorahitalab is supported to research and explore commonalities in visual motifs and imagery between Ontario Indigenous and Iranian/Persian cultures, with a view to designing a collaborative ceramic project in a subsequent phase.

Erin Howley is supported to produce T he Room for Wellness, consisting of 6 evening drop­-in workshops, involving visual arts and dialogue, with Sistering’s Harm Reduction Program.

Rhonda Lucy is supported to lead a series of workshops, facilitating a mache mask­-making process that draws on cultural teachings from her own Indigenous background.

Caroline McFarlane i s supported to design, build and equip an “Art Cart”, and portable visual arts activities to be offered from it in a hospital waiting room setting.

Jackie Omstead is supported to produce an arts workshops series for people living in supportive housing at 150 Dan Leckie Way and to develop skills in inclusive and integrated programming.

Karis Jones Pard is supported to produce B reaking Labels, involving LGBTQ youth in conversations, talking circles and mural­making about stories and experiences of coming out.

Adrienne Marcus Raja is supported to produce E xploring Camera­less Animation, a series of multi­age workshops at The Ground Floor to experiment with approaches to hand­made films and abstract collaborative animation.

Jessica Shane is supported to b ring together Parkdale girls and women, to explore themes of dislocation and belonging through 3­D object creation, live shadow play and filmed performance.

Stavria Thalassi is supported to design and pilot a workshop where participants and transform an existing item of clothing using ribbons, threads, small pieces of material, beads and more.

D o b r i l l a T o m i c i s s u p p o r t e d t o i n t e r v i e w a n d p h o t o g r a p h r e g u l a r s a t t h e H a p p y C u p ­ a diner that “still welcomes people who may not have loads of money”, in her own Bloordale Village neighbourhood, with a final photo essay.

We Are For Women and Families, Five young emerging arts leaders living in Kingston Galloway are supported to lead 5 visual arts workshops for local children and a fun fair, taking place at the East Scarborough Storefront.

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Amreen Kadwa & Farheen Kadwa: Twin sisters of Indian heritage seek to increase awareness and interest in henna art by teaching henna workshops and exploring unique styles as a form of expression to young girls in an inter-generational space in Thorncliffe Park.

Janez Jones: A dancer and choreographer of Guyanese decent provides a dance program for youth in Rexdale leading to a showcase at Stomp T.O Competition and at the North Kipling C.C annual community culture show.

Jasmine Wemigwans: A visual artist in her final year designs and creates an aboriginal themed mural at her high school Wexford C.S.A.

Matthew Cuff: A dancer and choreographer with 10 years of experience, specialized in Vogueing, organizes a ball as part of the vibrant ballroom scene in Toronto.
Moises Frank: A muralist leads a team of artists to re-purpose the tagged garage doors facing King Edward Junior school into “canvases” that will expose the new generation to positivity and colour through aerosol art.

Nadia Hakime: An Afghani Toronto-based artist paints a mural on the theme of animal welfare in the Danforth Village area.

Nina Escalante: A multidisciplinary artist from the Philippines shares her talents in photography, embroidery, and fashion design in an inter- generational space in Scarborough, leading workshops in the creation of multimedia artwork.

Quentin VerCetty: A multidisciplinary artist uses new media digital stories to celebrate first generation youth, from Rexdale and Regent Park, depicting them through a science fiction narrative.

Samay Arcentales Cajas: An indigenous (Kichwa) videographer works with five Latinx individuals to create and share an impactful public experience.

Swadhi Ranganee & Deepa Hettige: A mother and daughter duo facilitates a dance program for high school students teaching Sinhalese traditional dancing, fuse with elements of jazz, hip hop, Latin dancing and more.

Y+ Contemporary: A collective of emerging visual artists mentors local youth in a collaborative environment of shared learning and skill building. The local youth will work towards the creation and exhibit of their artworks while working alongside Y+ Contemporary as they too prepare for a professional show at their newly established artist-run space in Malvern.

YNG RTST: A high school collective of artists 15 to 17 years old, from Flemingdon Park and Thorncliffe Park communities leads self- expression art workshops for middle school students supported by local art advocates.