Who We Are
France Trépanier is a visual artist, curator and researcher of Kanien’kéha:ka and French ancestry. Her artistic and curatorial work has been presented in many venues in Canada, the US and Europe. France was the Aboriginal Curator at Open Space Arts Society in Victoria BC, where she is co-curated, with Michelle Jacques and Doug Jarvis, the exhibition Deconstructing Comfort. She also curated the Awakening Memory Project with artists Sonny Assu, lessLIE and Marianne Nicolson. France was the co-recipient of the 2012 Inaugural Audain Aboriginal Curatorial Fellowship by the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria. She co-authored with Chris Creighton-Kelly Understanding Aboriginal Art in Canada Today: a Knowledge and Literature Review for the Canada Council for the Arts. Her essays and articles have been published in numerous journals and magazines. France is co-chair of the Indigenous Program Council at the Banff Centre. She worked at the Canada Council for the Arts before becoming a Senior Arts Policy Advisor for the Department of Canadian Heritage. She held a diplomatic post as First Secretary, Cultural Affairs at the Canadian Embassy in Paris. She directed the Centre for New Media at the Canadian Cultural Centre in Paris. France was also the co-founder and Director of the artist-run center Axe Néo-7 in Gatineau, Quebec.
“I am grateful to many artists - mostly women - who came before me, insisting that Indigenous artists and artists of colour be recognized with proper resources to create artworks. I am grateful for IBPoC artists - many of them millennials - who today continue this historical endeavour, often working in intersectional ways. They inspire me.”
Chris Creighton-Kelly is an interdisciplinary artist, writer and cultural critic born in the UK with South Asian/British roots. His performative, usually ephemeral, artworks have been presented across Canada, in India, Europe and USA. He has received grants and awards in five countries. Chris has been persistently interested in questions of absence in art-making. Whose epistemology is unquestioned? Who has power? Who does not? Why not?
For over 30 years, he has worked as an arts consultant for artists; arts organizations and institutions; government agencies in Canada and internationally. In 1989-91, Chris was a consultant to the Canada Council on issues of cultural/racial equity. His work launched the formation of two critical offices – the Aboriginal Arts Office and the Equity Office that have subsequently led the way in transforming the Council from a mostly European arts agency to one in which multiple art traditions and practices are funded. In 1991-92, he worked at the Banff Centre designing and directing a 20 artists’ residency, Race and the Body Politic which indirectly influenced the establishment of the Aboriginal Arts program.
In 2011, he co-authored, along with France Trépanier, Understanding Aboriginal Art in Canada Today. In 2012, they were co-recipients of the inaugural Audain Aboriginal Curatorial Fellowship awarded by Art Gallery of Greater Victoria.
Chris appreciates his audiences a lot.
Breanna Fabbro has been living as an uninvited guest on Lekwungen Territory for the past 5 years and is so incredibly grateful for all of the learning, creating, and friendships that continue to unfold here. She graduated from UVic in 2016 with a MFA in painting and soon after began work at Open Space as a Program Coordinator, thanks to an Early Career Development grant from the BCAC. At Open Space she curated Forestrial Brain and was Assistant Curator to co-curators France Trépanier, Michelle Jacques, and Doug Jarvis for Deconstructing Comfort. Since 2017 she has been working with Primary Colours/Couleurs primaires as a Programs Coordinator and is grateful for the mentorship from France Trépanier and Chris Creighton-Kelly. She is of Italian, English, and Czech ancestry.
Isanielle Enright has been working for two years in the field of translation for Contemporary Aboriginal Arts. She has written several online translations for Primary Colors/Couleurs primaires, as well as the official translation of Toronto', a piece by Huron-Wendat artist Guy Sioui Durand.
She will receive her bachelor's degree in translation from Concordia University's Institute of Cooperative Education in the Summer of 2019. This junior translator already has strong skills thanks to the several months that she spent as an intern at Lionbridge. She also completed a translation internship at EY (formerly Ernst & Young), as well as a translation and interpretation internship with the Aboriginal Curatorial Collective of Canada.
Lexie Fontaine is a two-spirit Anishinaabe film director and visual artist. To this date she has directed three short films, alongside various art pieces varying from drawings, documentaries and short stories. Her dedication to hard work, organization and polish earned her the “A” honour roll in high school and a spot on the Dean’s list for both her first and second year in Capilano University’s IIDF program. Currently she lives with her mother in Surrey British Columbia as she continues to collaborate with Primary Colours / Couleurs primaries and work towards her film degree in the Motion Picture Arts program at Capilano University.