November: OCAF Updates, McMichael Canadian Art Collection, Reel Asian International Film Festival, and more!

Greetings,  OCAF Friends and Colleagues

I hope you have been savouring the cultural delights which we have had in abundance this autumn in Ontario. So many truly outstanding events and exhibitions of the highest artistic calibre, and happily some of them supported by OCAF!

Our hardworking Board held the OCAF Annual Meeting last week and a wonderful slate of Directors was elected for the upcoming year! At the same time, we said thank you and farewell to two exceptional Directors, Robin Cardozo who has been elected Chair of the Board of Soulpepper, and Diane Obam Dallaire, our great ambassador in Ottawa.

Gillian Smith has been elected Vice-Chair and Harvey McCue will continue as Secretary/Treasurer. Vikas Kohli will take on the outreach file to ensure OCAF is known and available to all possible eligible organizations. And Robert Sirman will continue his mentorship role for one more year. The full list of our Directors follows below.

The amended OCAF Bylaw was also approved at the Annual Meeting, so we are now fully up to date with best governance practices and compliant with the Ontario Not-For-Profit Corporations Act (ONCA).

As OCAF approaches its 25th anniversary in 2024, I look forward to meeting many of you and attending your events. Stay tuned for more information on the anniversary year!

With warmest good wishes,

Mary E. Hofstetter, C.M.
Chair and President

Minister Lumsden kicks off TIAO’s Tourism Summit!

The Honourable Neil Lumsden, Ontario Minister of Tourism, Culture and Sport, brought a warm and enthusiastic welcome to the participants of the Tourism Industry Association of Ontario’s Annual Summit in Mississauga this week.

His words of support to the sector and for TIAO’s departing CEO, Chris Bloore, in particular, were well received by the crowd. Staff attended along with board member, Vikas Kohli, who received a shout out from the stage for annually filling up Constitution Square with the Bollywood Monster Mashup festival at Mississauga City Hall. As always, the sessions were useful and lively and the networking so helpful to get the word out about OCAF!

OCAF Board Meets in Person for Gardiner Museum Opening and Annual Meeting

In this time of zoom meetings, the OCAF Board, comprised of many members from outside of Toronto, usually meets virtually. However, as they did in 2022, almost all came together to attend the OCAF supported Odundo Exhibition at the Gardiner Museum, the evening of October 17th and then met the following morning for the Annual Meeting and first and last meetings of the year.

An enormous thank you to the Ontario Arts Council for providing their comfortable boardroom and to the Gardiner Museum for hosting us, and other donors and funders, so graciously. We were pleased to welcome members from Ottawa, Sudbury, Thunder Bay, Stratford, Whitby, Windsor and Mississauga as well as Toronto. We bid farewell to Robin Cardozo and Diane Obam Dallaire, as Mary has mentioned in her introduction. It’s always sad to say goodbye but our list of past members and ambassadors continues to grow and we shall call on those members whenever we visit their communities.

The OCAF Board has an ambitious slate of objectives for the upcoming year including a 25th anniversary celebration program to be announced in the coming weeks. For a full list of the 2023-2024 OCAF Board of Directors and their current bios, click HERE.

Events On Now: Opening

Toronto Reel Asian International Film Festival

Toronto: November 8-19

The 27th edition of the Toronto Reel Asian International Film Festival is coming to Toronto this November! From November 8–19, 2023, watch Asian cinema and enjoy events featuring pan-Asian filmmakers and media artists.

Take a cinematic journey with the stars of today in this year’s festival films. Delve into fiction and documentary as they reflect connections with community, culture, and the imagined world. Shorts, RA:X, Wee Asian and Unsung Voices 12 are just some of the programs featured in this year’s festival.

Opening Night Gala Presentation features The Queen of My Dreams, which tells a story that illuminates layers of a deep and complex bond between generations of women who live in starkly different times yet negotiate their freedoms and desires in strikingly similar ways.

Learn more.

Events On Now: Ongoing

Magdalene Odundo: Objects in Diaspora

Toronto: October 19 – April 21

Magdalene Odundo: A Dialogue with Objects continues at the Gardiner Museum this November and features the exquisite sculptural vessels one of the world’s most renowned ceramic artists, Dame Magdalene Odundo. Her first exhibition in Canada and the largest ever presentation of her work in North America, the show brings together works spanning the artist’s career, including new pieces directly from her studio.

Odundo’s work will be in dialogue with art and artifacts from many time periods and cultures, ranging from ancient Mediterranean figurines to monumental Abstract Expressionist painting, to explore the connections that unite us as humans. These dialogues, and Odundo’s practice, model working trans-culturally in ways that are neither colonial nor extractive, while interrogating the role of museum collections of historical objects as well as hierarchies of Western art.

Learn more.

McMichael Canadian Art Collection: The Uses of Enchantment: Art & Environmentalism 

Kleinburg: May 6 – October 29

Visit McMichael Canadian Art Collection to experience the illuminating The Uses of Enchantment: Art & Environmentalism exhibition. In a time when our human relationship to the natural world is rapidly changing, this exhibition pulls together artists who are registering their experience in ways that intrigue, caution and entrance.

The exhibition takes its title from the classic work by Austrian psychologist and scholar Bruno Bettelheim, who posited that children’s fairy tales provide for children an imaginative space in which to process their deepest fears and dread: the death of a parent, abandonment etc. Borrowing this paradigm, curator Sarah Milroy explores how contemporary artists use the strategy of enchantment to explore our contemporary experience of climate change, species and habitat loss, and environmental degradation.

Artists in the exhibition include Shary Boyle, Carrie Allison, Shuvinai Ashoona, Qavavau Manumie, Bill Burns, Sara Angelucci and Winnie Truong, working in such various media as clay, pencil drawing, audio art, performance and sculpture.

There is so much going on this fall and we have only been able to highlight a few events. Please visit our website for a complete list!

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