OCAD University to showcase indigenous artwork at grad show

TORONTO – OCAD University is opening its doors for GradEx 102, a public exhibition and celebration of more than 900 graduating students, all a part of the new wave of creative thinkers, makers and collaborators.

Among those that will be presenting their work are the students from the Indigenous Visual Culture program. These students are using art to draw attention to issues faced by First Nations peoples in Canada. Three students who will be presenting are — Tia Cavanagh, Laura St. Amant, and Andrew Harding.

Caganagh is an Ojibwe artist who explores the experiences of her grandmother, a victim of the residential school system. St. Amant is a Metis artist in the Indigenous Visual Culture program who often paints portraits of Indigenous women, and Harding is a Metis artist who focuses on light as a subject matter.

The event draws roughly 40,000 visitors every year and this is the biggest ever GradEx event. It will be held over five days from May 3 to May 7 and spread across three buildings on the OCAD University campus, including the iconic Sharp Centre for Design.

One graduating student in each program will be awarded the OCAD University medal acknowledging creativity, mastery of technique and high academic standards. The winners will be announced April 28.

“I am so proud to show Toronto the accomplishments of this group of talented creative thinkers who have grown and flourished with the support of the university’s faculty and academic staff, experts in their respective fields,” said Dr. Sara Diamond, president and vice-chancellor. “Increasingly, from the public sector to large corporations, leaders are turning to artists and designers to explore the human interface of their products and services and to solve problems.”

GradEx 102 runs Wednesday, May 3, to Sunday, May 7, 2017 and admission is free. For details and a complete event schedule, visit www.ocadu.ca/gradex.

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