Meet the Speakers
Flavio Belli, w/ Flavio Bell, Curator & TOAF Judge
Flavio Belli possesses a wide range of experience in the Canadian arts community. He is an art consultant, curator and artist. He is currently Chair of the Board of Directors for the Al Green Sculpture Studio and School and a member of the Board of Directors of the Italian community’s Columbus Centre. He was Co-Curator of The Al Green Gallery in 2013 and 2014. He served as a member of the sculpture selection committee for the McMurtry Gardens of Justice (2007-2014) while also a Board member of the Toronto Outdoor Art Fair (2004-2014). By appointment of the Governor in Council, he served two three-year terms as a member of the Canadian Cultural Property Export Review Board in Ottawa (2005-2012). Flavio was Director and Curator of the Joseph D. Carrier Art Gallery in Columbus Centre (1990-2005). During that time, he was also an on-camera arts commentator for Toronto Living, for Rogers Television (1999-2004).
Jonathan Goldsbie, Podcaster at Wag the Doug
Jonathan Goldsbie is the news editor of CANADALAND, covering the intersection of media, politics, and culture in this country. Before that, he was a staff reporter at NOW Magazine, and a columnist for the National Post, tracking Toronto City Hall before, during, and after the mayoralty of Rob Ford.
Jenn Goodwin, Dance Artist & Producer, Nuit Blanche
Jenn Goodwin is a graduate of the Master of Visual Studies - Curatorial Studies program at the University of Toronto. She is a dance artist, curator, producer, and sometimes a filmmaker. Over the last 20 years her dance work and short films have been shown across Canada and internationally from St. John’s Newfoundland, The Canada Dance Festival in Ottawa, Tangente and Studio 303 in Montreal, The Next Wave in Melbourne, Australia, Brussels, Amsterdam, New York City, Vancouver and extensively in Toronto. Goodwin is one half of the art band MORTIFIED with Camilla Singh and has worked as an artistic producer with Toronto’s Nuit Blanche since its inception in 2006 and has curated performance and exhibitions for the Art Bank, Summerworks Festival (2016), Zalucky Contemporary, The Drake Hotel, and Harbourfront Centre among others. She has written for the Journal for Curatorial Studies, The Canadian Theatre Review and The Dance Current.
Adrian is a multi-talented artist and a bit of a renaissance man: he has experience ranging from mural painting to video-game and cartoon design, ink and graphic illustration, and Graphic Design, and everything in between, as well as co-director at #Hashtag Gallery where he curates and teaches drawing.
Taiga Lipson, Curator & Writer, Olga Korper Gallery
Taiga was born and raised among the artists of 17 Morrow Ave, and as the third generation to enter the business she was trained to understand and cultivate the ethos of Olga Korper Gallery. Taiga curates exhibitions and art fairs, writes the essays and press, manages the social media, and gives regular tours and talks inside the gallery and out. She is treasurer of the Art Dealer’s Association of Canada and on the committees for Art/TO and MOCA Gala 2018. Having grown up in the art world, Taiga is deeply passionate about art literacy. She aims to bridge the often-intimidating gap between art and viewer, to encourage engaging and meaningful experiences with conceptual contemporary art.
Robin McKenna, Award-Winning Director & Producer of GIFT
Robin McKenna is an award-winning director, producer and writer with over two decades of experience in documentary filmmaking. She is director, producer and writer of GIFT, director of a short film with legendary actress Geneviève Bujold, produced by the NFB for the Governor General’s Awards for the Performing Arts, and is in production on Thanadoula, a short animated documentary fairytale. She is producer and director of Medicine, a feature-length documentary about ayahuasca, medicine and healing.Robin began making films with the celebrated Radio-Canada series La Course destination monde, travelling around the world alone with a camera making short, creative documentaries. Her film The Great War Experience won Yorkton Film Festival’s Founders’ Award in 2007. She has directed award-winning series for networks in the US and Canada, with cinematography credits including City of Borders (Berlinale, Hot Docs 2009). She is an alumnus of Hot Docs’ Doc Lab, and has been a filmmaker-mentor in Indigenous communities with Wapikoni Mobile and has worked in Latin America, Russia, India, Kenya, Israel and Palestine.
Robert Mitchell, OCAD U Assistant Professor of Material Art & Design
Robert has created wearable art and design installations for more than two decades. He is a professor at OCAD University teaching Jewellery in the Material Art & Design Department, has a Master of Strategic Foresight and Innovation and was the recipient of OCAD University’s Price Award for Excellence in Teaching in 2008. He has won numerous awards and grants from arts and fine craft organizations, his work is included in private and gallery collections, and he has exhibited in both solo and group exhibitions locally, nationally and internationally. His Coast-to-Coast Bracelet was chosen to represent Canada in the Unity and Diversity Exhibition at the 2009 Cheongju International Craft Biennale in South Korea. Robert has also coordinated and juried numerous exhibitions, most recently as curator for “Crafting the Future”, a national student exhibition organized as part of the Canadian Craft Biennial Symposium in 2017: “Can Craft? Craft Can!”; Come Eat With Us, an exhibition of craft held in conjunction with Craft Ontario’s, “Crafting Sustainability Conference” in 2015 and “Opine”, a national student exhibition held in conjunction with the 2013 Society of North American Goldsmiths conference, “Meta Mosaic”. Robert’s diverse interests also include the intersection of design and biomimicry, applying these principles to global water issues, involving conservation and reclamation, as evidenced by his design for a patented passive irrigation system.
Tiffany Pratt, TOAF’s Art Love Envoy
Tiffany Pratt is a designer, artist, creative director, author, speaker, television personality, podcaster and maker. She is a technicolour force, and her multifaceted design philosophy transforms people, objects and spaces. Having worked in fashion and beauty in New York for almost 10 years, Tiffany returned to her Canadian roots in 2008, and opened up her own art studio Glitter Pie, where she taught children and adults alike the true magic of making. She inspired the process of art instead of celebrating the finished product & rejoiced in the daily discovery of creative invention. Glitter Pie was more than just a studio. It was the birthplace that inspired the creative path she is on and also where her television career was born. A morning live-eye on Toronto’s Breakfast Television broadcasted her space and magnetic spirit to the city.
She has a unique gift to see the exquisite in the unexpected, which is reflected in her first book with Penguin Random House called, This Can Be Beautiful. Her love for treasure hunting and transformation continued with her first show on HGTV Canada called, Buy IT, Fix IT, Sell IT, and her brilliant transformations have been featured on the last four seasons of HGTV Canada’s Home To Win.
Tiffany has an unmistakable, standout style. She is known as the queen of colour and has a true passion for her work. From interior design, commercial design, art direction, product design, installations, writing, painting, making, speaking or styling, Tiffany preaches that the power to change and re-imagining can also change lives. Tiffany’s ability to connect intimately and inspire her clients is unparalleled. She leaves her heart and a trail of glitter wherever she goes. Tiffany Pratt loves her work and she loves you!
Allison Smith, Podcaster at Wag the Doug
Allison Smith is a political reporter and the founder and publisher of Queen's Park Today. She has reported on the Ontario Legislature for more than six years. She is also the publisher of BC Today and AB Today — subscription newsletter services for political insiders in British Columbia and Alberta.
W. David Ward, Artist, TOAF Judge & Co-Founder of the New Regionalism Project
A working artist for over 30 years, David is represented by Loch Gallery. His paintings hang in the offices of The Lieutenant Governor of Ontario and The Governor General of Canada; The Crown Collection; Manx National Gallery, Isle of Man, Provincial collections of Ontario and Newfoundland; the Gail Museum, in Seoul, South Korea, and in many other collections around the world. Over the past few years, he has dedicated increasingly more time to organizing art projects and curating: most recently, the 'Eyes Of Society' exhibition, with a group of prominent Haida artists, at the Robert Bateman Centre in Victoria -- a project that lives on in the 'Eyes of Society - Social Commentary Award'.
Robyn Wilcox, Head of Programming, DesignTO
Robyn Wilcox is a Toronto-based arts programmer and administrator, focused in design and craft. She holds concurrent positions as the Coordinator of Craft & Design at Harbourfront Centre and the Programs Manager at DesignTO (formerly the Toronto Design Offsite Festival). Robyn has a background in art and architecture and holds a Master of Architecture (Post-Professional) in Cultural Mediations and Technology from McGill University. She has curated and co-curated exhibitions at Harbourfront Centre, Craft Ontario, and Urbanspace Gallery.