Celebrating 1 Year of the Idle No More Movement at Dundas Square & The Eaton Centre, Toronto.
On Saturday, December 21st people of all backgrounds got together to join in a community round dance to celebrate the one year anniversary of the Idle No More Movement. This gathering of concerned citizens demonstrated that malls can be a place for practicing living culture that is meaningful going beyond our need to shop. Malls can be public spaces that become activated allowing the common area to function as a place for exchange and support.
“The Beat of the Globe pulses in the heart of Toronto as the 3rd Annual Small World in the Square takes over Yonge-Dundas Square on Saturday September 28th from 1 pm on. This free, family-friendly event will showcase internationally renowned musicians who will get the crowd jumping to genres including Balkan, Calypso, Afro-Colombian jazz, Funk, Mexican rock and more. Between main stage performances, the InterAction Stage features hands-on workshops where participants can have unique one-on-one experiences with the artists. The centre piece of the 12th Annual Small World Music Festival, this cross-cultural community celebration will be a day to remember!”
“My parents have been my role models for love” Sas tells me as we walk around downtown Toronto finding nooks and crannies to drop off necklaces she has made as part of her #SpreadLove campaign.
All that love clearly rubbed off on her because when I met Sas at Manifesto Festival where she was selling her clever pieces at the Fresh Market it was clear that she radiates something beautiful.
“I love words, I love quotes, I always believe that little things can make a different why not spread happiness.” She continues, “and I wanted to get the people I love involved” so she began to enlist friends and family to come up with quotes around the subject of love. On her website each person who submitted a quote was also given a profile so that the lucky (or intentioned) finders of her gifts would be able to visit the website and have another dimension to their experience.
Attached to each pendant is Sas’ website address and contact information as she hopes that people who find the jewellery will give her feedback as to how it impacted them thus adding yet another layer to the narrative of the necklace.
After the drops at Metropolitan United Church, Ryerson University Images Arts Building, Dundas Square, AGO and Kensington Market we double backed along the same route to see if anyone noticed our booty of good vibes. Most were still dangling so maybe people are suspicious these days of something that says “take me I’m FREE!” and are looking around for the hidden camera. So here we are giving you all the FYI that Sas & MIXED BAG MAG will be doing future drops around the city so keep your eyes peeled for positivity!
“We need to hone and cultivate a group of artists right now that really know who they are, know how they fit into their broader community and then have a message. We need to provide spaces…where an emerging artist can be given a space where they have critical thought and get to know who they are and how they fit into the continuum of art and art history…how they can shape and change the way that the future can look” ~ Che Kothari, founder of Manifesto
As part of the Manifesto Festival, Walk for Youth Arts was a parade down Toronto’s Yonge Street that brought out arts activists, community leaders and cultural provocateurs to bring awareness and rally support to keep our city’s youth programs diverse, accessible and funded!
To give an idea as to the importance of these programs in the lives of the youth that attend check out these videos on some of the initiatives you can find in Toronto.
“The young people involved are here because they are innovative, because they are passionate because they are creative and in this city something is happening that I don’t think has happened before, not youth organizing, that has happened before but youth organizing that has the potential to be sustainable, that has the potential to create real change, not change that’s only going to be around for two or three years but change that could actually alter the fabric of the way this society is operating and that is amazing!”~ Amanda Parris, Playwright & Performer
“Using art as a vehicle for social change is something I live by”~ Boonaa Mohammed, Spoken Word Poet & Storyteller
To view more videos on the talent, vision and action of organizations and projects who are changing the landscape of this city MIXED BAG MAG recommends visiting the Walk for Youth Arts Blog.
Keep updated on how you can support this cause by following along on Facebook and on Twitter at #Walk4YouthArts.