The unjust treatment of those who identify as Black, Indigenous and People of Colour (BIPOC) is deeply embedded in the systems that uphold society and the status quo across the nation and beyond. On June 3, 2020 Durham Art Gallery publicly acknowledged our solidarity with and support of Black communities. The oppression of Black people must end. So to must anti-Indigenous racism and anti-Asian racism.
Durham Art Gallery prioritizes contemporary art in its many forms, through exhibitions and programs that explore the complexity of the contemporary experience while also foregrounding reciprocity through workshops and integrated programming. As a regional, public art gallery we are dedicated to being an inclusive institution that facilitates community through gathering, sharing, and exchanging ideas. The Durham Art Gallery is committed to Anti-Racism, we practice this commitment through our organizational values: Appreciation, Gathering and Sharing, Inclusion, Inspiration, Reciprocity and Stewardship.
Durham Art Gallery is honoured to have the responsibility of cradling creativity and supporting cultural practitioners. We recognize that we do not exist in isolation in this settler nation called Canada. As an organization, Durham Art Gallery consistently refers to its values to situate ourselves within the culturescape here in so-called West Grey, on Turtle Island, and internationally.
What does this mean in a municipality that hosts a population of which 93% of residents self-identify as white? It means that this charity, the Durham At Gallery, willingly accepts the responsibility of upholding a Safe Space, actively working towards anti-racism and anti-oppression.
Today we will share how the Durham Art Gallery is contributing to change within our organization and immediate community. We will:
Continue to foreground the work of and amplify the voices of IBPOC (Indigenous, Black, and People of Colour) creative practitioners, thinkers and community members
Stand up against racial violence, discrimination and racism by calling people in and providing (un)learning resources
Provide training for board members, docents, volunteers and employees in order to facilitate and navigate these conversations
Though these changes are incremental, we are here for the long haul and are dedicated to the continual process of anti-racism. We call upon our partners and supporters to do the same. In sharing the gallery’s position we encourage you to look into, read and become familiar with the resources below and to come to your own positions and actions. We invite you to educate yourself, unlearn, and advocate for accountability and change.
Local Historical Context
Northern Terminus, the goal of this annual Journal is to provide readers with information about the historical Black community of Grey County.
Settling In Place: An Interview with Andrea Fatona from the MacLaren Art Centre
Speakers for the Dead, Documentary by Jennifer Holness & David Sutherland, 2000 (49 Mins)
‘What white privilege?’ ‘Why can’t you be more civil?’ Some FAQs about racism and answers you may find challenging
Sightlines Podcast, Ryerson Image Centre