CARFAC Ontario
THE VOICE FOR ARTISTS

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People of CARFAC Ontario

Staff


Jason Samilski  |  Managing Director

jason@carfacontario.ca

Jason is a Toronto-based literary artist and musician His work has been published in print and online, and his radio dramas have been broadcasted in Canada and the U.S. Jason also served as a Creative Director of CUE, an award-winning Toronto-based arts initiative that, since 2008, has provided over $500,000 in high-access grants for new generation artists who experience social, cultural, and economic marginalization. As a co-developer of the initiative since its inception, Jason spearheaded CUE's many programs and projects including high-access project grants, employment, mentorship, curatorial and artistic creation residencies, discipline-specific development programs, creative enterprise support programs, and pop-up exhibitions. Jason was also responsible for developing, launching, and overseeing direction and operations of CUE's Margin of Eras Gallery, a 1300-square-foot multidisciplinary gallery and cultural space in Toronto's Parkdale neighbourhood that, between 2017-2020 produced over 70 exhibitions and events engaging and presenting the works of 360 artists.  



Luxshanaa Shebarajah   |   Operations Coordinator

carfacontario@carfacontario.ca

Luxshanaa Sebarajah, formally worked as CARFAC Ontario's Publications and Archival Assistant and currently is the organization's Membership, Publications, and Communications Coordinator. Luxshanaa is also a Toronto-based artist whose practice includes drawing, painting, photography, print-making, installation and performance. Their interdisciplinary practice excavates the notion of identity in relation to issues of forced migration, inherited trauma, and early childhood marginalization. Luxshanaa holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from York University’s School of Arts Media Performance and Design (AMPD) and has exhibited their work at the CONTACT Photography Festival (2011), Nuit Blanche (2013), and York University’s Gales Gallery and Special Projects Gallery (2017-2018). Luxshanaa has also presented their work at the Tamil Studies Conference (University of Toronto, 2014), and the Tamil Studies Symposium (York University, 2016).  Luxshanaa’s debut solo exhibition, Coming Out Party (Special Projects Gallery, 2017) featured a performance-installation of the same name; critiquing the hyper-constructed notions of Tamil womanhood.


Board of Directors


Lisa Myers   |  Co-Chair

Lisa Myers is an Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Environmental and Urban Change and holds a York University Research Chair in Indigenous Art and Curatorial Practice. As a curator and artist with a keen interest in interdisciplinary collaboration, her research focuses on Contemporary Indigenous art considering the varied values and functions of elements such as medicine plants and language, sound, and knowledge. Through many media and materials including socially engaged art approaches, her art practice examines place, underrepresented histories/present/futures, and collective forms of knowledge exchange. Part of her curatorial practice includes advocacy for artists needs, in doing so she is passionate at navigating institutional barriers and limitations. Myers is a member of Beausoleil First Nation and is based in both Toronto and Port Severn, ON.


Teresa M. Carlesimo   |   Co-Chair

Teresa Carlesimo (Canadian-American) is an interdisciplinary artist currently pursuing a PhD in Cultural Studies at Queen's University where her research considers various systems of power, class and empire as integral to the analysis of environmental crisis. Since her first involvement in artist-run culture as an undergraduate, and shortly thereafter during her early work as a programming and organizational member of the MayWorks Festival, she has had a sustained interest in the economic issues facing living artists, and advocating for artists as workers. As a cultural worker more broadly, she has served on the board of galleries and Artist-Run Centres, and facilitated and organized public projects, performances, interventions, and conferences. 

In her art practice her recent work explores labour, extractivism, and the urban built environment through large-scale immersive installations and video works, with recent exhibitions including Daily Grind  at Museum London, a form of formlessness at the Agnes Etherington Art Centre, contact landing(s) at the Thames Art Gallery, and more light than heat at Rodman Hall Art Centre. Her writing has been published in exhibition publications and catalogues, as well as in recent publications including Performance Research, Public Journal, Art Papers, and Blackflash



Rachel Butler   |   Secretary

Rachel is a former labour activist now arts organizer, with some additional precarious jobs in between. Now Rachel is a Project Manager and Studio Manager at Akin Collective. Rachel has helped orchestrate many of Akin’s community engagement and professional development events. She held the primary role in planning Akin Studio Program at MOCA Year Two 2019-2020 residency within the Museum of Contemporary Art here in Toronto, Akin St. Clair Don’t Meats Mural Project 2018, Akin’s community workshop residency at the Gardiner Museum called Place/Setting in 2016, and the Urban Workers Skillshare 2017. Rachel recently exhibited at Black Cat Showroom as part of Studio Mates group show.



Macy Siu   |   Treasurer

Macy Siu is an artist and foresight strategist who is driven by expression and empowerment tied to the hyphen of in-between spaces. Her current practice focuses on creating evidence-based experiential futures and design fiction towards driving conversations around possible inclusive futures. Macy has a background in fine arts (photography and video art) with editorial and public relations experience in the art museum sector (The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery, Solomon Guggenheim Museum New York). She is also a licensed lawyer in Ontario, specializing in intellectual property law. 



Sean Lee   |   Director

Sean Lee is an artist and curator exploring the notion of disability art and accessibility as the last avant-garde. His methodology reframes embodied difference as a means to resist traditional aesthetic idealities. Orienting towards a “crip horizon”, Sean’s practice gestures towards the transformative possibilities of a world that desires the way disability can disrupt.

Sean holds a B.A. in Arts Management and Studio from the University of Toronto, Scarborough and is currently the Director of Programming at Tangled Art + Disability. Previous to this role, he was Tangled’s inaugural Curator in Residence (2016) as well as Tangled’s Gallery Manager (2017). Sean has been integral to countless exhibitions and public engagements throughout his tenure at Tangled Art + Disability. 

In addition to his position at Tangled Art + Disability, Sean is an independent lecturer, speaker, and moderator adding his insights and perspectives to conversations surrounding Disability Arts across Canada, the United States and internationally. Sean currently sits on the board of CARFAC Ontario, Creative Users Projects, and is a member of the Ontario Art Council’s Deaf and Disability Advisory Group and Toronto Art Council’s Visual Arts / Media Arts Committee. 

Organizational Umbrella

CARFAC Ontario is one of several regional affiliates which includes CARFAC BC, CARFAC Alberta, CARFAC Saskatchewan, CARFAC Manitoba, CARFAC Maritimes, and VANL/CARFAC.

Each organization operates distinctly with its own board of directors, staff, and offices, but work to advance the visual and media arts as a cohesive voice for artists in our own regions, and on the national level.   

In Quebec, CARFAC National has formed a partnership alliance with Le Regroupement des artistes en arts visuels du Québec (RAAV) at the national level, due to their mutual federal certification under the Status of the Artist Act. CARFAC National and RAAV work on joint initiatives at the national level towards the promotion of the social, moral, and economic rights and interests of professional visual artists in Canada and Quebec. RAAV members also receive automatic membership in CARFAC National.

CARFAC National

CARFAC National is the national organization that is mandated to advocate for Canadian artists at the federal level, and develops and updates the Minimum Recommended Fee Schedule. CARFAC Ontario members are automatically members of CARFAC National.

www.carfac.ca
membership@carfac.ca

Regional Affiliates

CARFAC BC

CARFAC Alberta 

CARFAC Saskatchewan 

CARFAC Manitoba 

CARFAC Maritimes
(Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island)

VANL/CARFAC
(Visual Arts Newfoundland and Labrador) 

RAAV
Le Regroupment des artistes en arts visuels du Québec 

WHO WE ARE

CARFAC Ontario is the association of visual and media artists in Ontario. Our vision is for vibrant, equitable, and sustainable communities in which we as artists are properly recognized for the role we play.

CONTACT US

(416) 340-8850
(877) 890-8850 Toll Free

ADDRESS

414 - 401 Richmond St. W.
Toronto, ON    M5V 3A8

REMOTE OFFICE HOURS

Tues - Fri,  12 - 5PM
please call or email ahead

CARFAC Ontario is supported by our members and the following organizations:

          

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