Lights on the Exchange – Allumez le Quartier brings an entirely new experience to the heart of Winnipeg’s historic Exchange District. It invites you to embrace winter and explore light in its many forms, illuminating long nights with light-based art installations that re-examine and reimagine, bringing lesser-known histories to light.

Weavers Windows
Artist: Kristen Roos @kris10roos
237 McDermot Ave.

The title of the work refers to the windows that were in the top floors of weavers’ cottages in the UK prior to the industrial revolution and the automation of the loom, which were called weavers’ windows or lights. The video was designed using techniques found in vintage paint and animation software for early personal computers from the 1980’s and 1990’s, and uses Jacquard weaving patterns from the 1800’s. The designs in Roos’s video speak to the history of the Jacquard loom and its relationship to computers and data, making connections between weaving structures and the blocky pixelated imagery found in early video computer systems like the Atari 2600, early 8 bit computers, and the Commodore Amiga.

Artist Bio: Kristen Roos is an interdisciplinary artist and educator whose practice includes a wide range of mediums including electronic music composition, sound design, sound installation, radio and transmission art, animation, printmaking, textiles, and media archaeology.

cosmos in flux
Artist: Diana Lynn VanderMeulen @dianalynnvdm
492 Main St.

cosmos in flux is multi-channel video developed from Expanded Reality project A Boundless and Radiant Aura. With a specific focus on alternate planetary realities, Diana strives to coax the digital sphere back into an embodied physical presence. Extended from a series of physical mixed-media artworks, virtuality is a means for her to challenge the bounds of cinematic terrain while exploring landscape in relation to the metaphysical. Intentional collaging of elements and embracing glitch encourage a playful renegotiation of information and have become key tools in confronting the artist’s sense of digital-cosmic corporeality.

Artist Bio: Diana Lynn VanderMeulen is a multidisciplinary artist who lives and works in Toronto, Canada. Her practice is fluid between analogue and digital mediums with a focus on extended reality and cyclical material use as she develops expansive, multisensory environments.

Tadǫetła ; Walk In A Circle
Artist: Casey Koyczan @caseykoyczanart
174 Market Ave. – Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre

This body of work was created by re-imagining materials from Indigenous culture and Canada’s Arctic as an embodiment of human characteristics and walk cycles within a 3D environment to bring out their spirit. Drawing inspiration from such mediums and materials as moose/caribou hair tufting, beadwork, hide-tanning and quillwork, these works showcase surreal transformations of how they are interpreted and appreciated. As an artist who has loved these materials since childhood but has not avidly used them in a physical sense, my approach has allowed me to work with them in a completely different way with digital influence and being able to implement physics properties.

Artist Bio: Casey Koyczan is a Dene interdisciplinary artist from Yellowknife, NT, that uses various mediums to communicate how culture and technology can grow together in order for us to develop a better understanding of who we are, where we come from, and where we are going. He creates with whatever tools necessary to bring an idea to fruition, and works mostly in sculpture, installation, 3D / VR / AR / 360, video, and audio works such as music, soundscapes and film scores..

Nature Bots
Artist: Nereo Zorro @scenereo
492 Main St.

The technology revolution has undoubtedly aided humanity in many positive ways, but in contrast it has also brought upon damage to our world through pollution and the depletion of natural resources. I wanted to create these nature bots as a reflection of our current digital era and invite people to continue conversations regarding the impacts technology has on humanity. The Nature Bot installation highlights the connection between a healthy brain and a healthy heart. The planter head symbolically suggests that we get enough water sun and oxygen if we really care to light the path for future generations to come.

Artist Bio: Nereo Zorro aka scenereo is a multidisciplinary artist- painter, poet, mover, teacher, father who believes in art being utilized as a powerful tool for creating positive social change.
Whether painting large scale murals, speed painting beside a live orchestra, leading dance workshops, performing spoken word poetry or sculpting larger than life creatures, Nereo always looks for the interconnectedness in all of his work. When asked “what is your favourite medium to work with?” You may often catch him responding with the answer: “life”

There Was a City
Artist: Sylvia Matas
214 McDermot Ave.

There Was a City was created from satellite photographs taken from Google Earth. I looked for images that felt ambiguous sites where it seemed uncertain if what I was looking at was in a state of construction or decline. After spending so much time inside in the past year and I was thinking about the temporary nature of human-built environments, relative to non-human time scales. These subtitles describe an amorphous group of people and how they occupy these built spaces that are transforming in time.

Artist Bio: Sylvia Matas is an artist working with images and language resulting in videos, books, texts, and drawings.  Her work has been exhibited at Gallery 44, YYZ Artist’s Outlet, Mercer Union (Toronto), The Winnipeg Art Gallery, Plug In ICA (Winnipeg), Truck Contemporary Art (Calgary), and Útúrdúr (Reykjavik).

Colonial Cartoons: Nanabush Across Time
Artist: Kaine McEwan @kain_mcewan
185 Bannatyne Ave.

Nanabush is originally a “mythological” trickster spirit told in many Anishinaabe stories. I decided to interpret him in my own way by using that trickster feel and making him tell stories of Indigenous urbanization and the real issues Indigenous people face. Nanabush is supposed to represent Indigenous people as a whole in my cartoons, all the creators I create within this world are to poke fun or address the real issues going on with commercialization of Indigenous objects or the history of colonial times. To kind of mask it in this fun, rubber-hose cartoon style and make people look twice at it, to really engage the audience.

Artist Bio: Kaine McEwan is a two-spirit Anishinaabe artist from Treaty 1 Winnipeg Manitoba. By taking aspects from traditional Indigenous art and mixing it with urban art, I like to create a unique style of graphic illustrations. I started drawing at an early age, taking an interest in video games and animals, eventually evolving into more character concept art. I attended the University of Manitoba School of Art, pursuing a Design Honours degree.

Unenlightened Triptych
Artist: Bonnie Marin
93 Albert St.

The concept behind the work, is the oppression of marginalized groups of people through the manipulation of religious doctrines and beliefs, that only benefit the few who maintain all the power. Medieval and Renaissance religious paintings were the inspiration for the style of the work, everyday life was the conceptual inspiration. The images on display are printed on plexiglass for its illuminating effect, the originals were built using mixed media collage and coloured pencils.

Artist Bio: Bonnie Marin’s practice includes painting, sculpture, collage and bookworks. Her works are narrative-based, telling stories of social interactions between people. It comes from a feminist perspective, and often plays with images of gender, religion and nature. Though her work often deals with dark themes, Marin uses humour by combining elements of pop art and surrealism. She has exhibited nationally and internationally and her pieces are held in various public and private collections.

…from within…
Artists: Kelsey Braun
100 Arthur St. Artspace Drayway

Through a practice of focused listening and attention to the aural periphery, Kelsey Braun seeks the poetic out of sonic events and within the places they inhabit, utilizing techniques in field recording, foley and improvisation, the results of which take the form of single and multi-channel installation, design for moving image or theatre, collage or the publication of stereo recordings, either solo or collaboratively. Generally speaking, Kelsey’s work pursues sound as a path-way towards an awareness of the moment, the space, or the beings that exist in it.

Artist: KC Adams @adams_kc
100 Arthur St. – Artspace Drayway

Nipiy (water) draws on the Neheyew (Cree) water teachings and reminds us that nipiy comes in many forms. Cree knowledge keeper Pauline Shirt from Northern Alberta explains, “Every time you bless the water, every time you sing, every time you acknowledge the spirit of the water, it becomes medicine because it is spirit.” Shirt’s teaching reminds us that water can be used more than for survival; it can uplift your spirit and heal your soul. The space is transformed by nipiy in magical formations to remind us of its quintessential power.

Artist Bio: KC Adams (Ininnew/Anishinaabe/British) is a registered Fisher River Cree Nation member living in Winnipeg. KC is a relational maker, educator, activist, and mentor who creates work that explores technology in relation to her Indigenous culture. Adams is an award-winning, nationally and internationally known maker with a B.F.A. from Concordia University and an M.A. in Cultural Studies, Curatorial Stream from the University of Winnipeg. KC has had numerous solo and group exhibitions, residencies and three biennales.

Chevron Cyanotypes
Artist: Alexis Aurora
Multiple Locations: Artspace Lobby, Bodegoes, King and Bannatyne, Más Coffee

The four works on canvas I’m presenting in the drayway of Artspace are made using a photographic technique called cyanotype. The chevron symbol is printed with the use of UV light. To complete the picture the canvas must go through a water rinse – almost like a wash. The chevron is a shape, simple or multiplied, with a peak alternating with a trough, recalling the movements of water. I think of these works as signs or flags that lead you to an entrance or an exit.

Artist Bio: Alexis Aurora is a métis artist based in Winnipeg, Treat 1 and homeland of the Métis people. Alexis’s recent exhibitions include; Waves/River at La Maison des artistes visuels (2021), Through A Glass Darkly at Four Seasons NY (2018) and Peeks of Past Sheets of Present at Air Antwerp (2018). Residencies include the Banff Centre for the Arts and Air Antwerp in Belgium. Alexis holds a BFA from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design and participated in the exchange program at the Cooper Union School of Art and Architecture in New York.

Poet Box
Stage Design: Seema Goel, Dashiell Kirkland Curators: Contemporary Verse 2
84 Albert St.

Poetry Reading Schedule (all performances start at 7pm):

Friday, Feb 2 – Hannah Green

Wednesday, Feb 14 – Azka Ahmed

Thursday, Feb 29 – Ella Taylor

Thursday, March 7 – Cale Plett

Sunday, March 10 – Azka Ahmed

Tuesday, March 19 – Ella Taylor

Thursday, March 21 – Cale Plett

Artist Bios: Seema Goel is an artist, writer, educator, and curator. With a dual background in the arts and sciences, Seema connects these two worlds in her art and community activities through outreach programming, art-science curatorial projects, and her sculpture practice which critically engages scientific process and themes.

Cale Plett (they/them) is a nonbinary, genderfluid writer living on Treaty 1 Territory in Winnipeg, MB. Their short fiction and poetry have appeared in journals across Canada and the US, including The Malahat Review, Riddle Fence, Prairie Fire, Grain, CV2, Prism, The MacGuffin, Arc, and elsewhere.

Ella Taylor (they/she) is a multi-disciplinary artist born and raised in Treaty 1 Territory (Win-Nipi). Her dabbling includes published work in CV2, Sisi Mag, and Herizons Magazine.

Azka Ahmed (they/them) is a queer Southwest Asian interdisciplinary artist and community health educator in Winnipeg, Manitoba on Treaty 1 Territory. Their practice involves inclusive community organizing, advocacy, and cultural activism through art and education.

Hannah Green is a writer and poetry editor at CV2. She was a poetry finalist for the Bronwen Wallace Award for Emerging Writers in 2021. Her debut collection Xanax Cowboy won the Governor General’s Literary Award for poetry in 2023.

wiigwaas gikendamowin
Artists: KC Adams @adams_kc
510 Main St. – City Hall

My lantern honours the Exchange District as an arts hub and vibrant place to visit, and it recognizes the original peoples of this territory. My designs represent technologies that Indigenous people embraced in the past and present; beading, birchbark biting, and modern information technologies. The imagery contains Indigenous knowledge that vibrates with a wealth of wisdom, balance, hope, and innovation.

Artist Bio: KC Adams is of Anishinaabe, Niheyew, and British descent and lives in Winnipeg. Adams is a relational maker whose work connects to Indigenous axiology and epistemology––recognizing her role as an educator, activist, community member and mentor. In addition, Adams creates work that explores technology and its relationship to her Indigenous identity and knowledge systems.

Peaceful Protest, the Dividend of True Democracy
Artist: Yisa Akinbolaji @yisaakinbolaji
492 Main St.

The Exchange District was the site of Winnipeg’s General Strike. My lantern celebrates the power of the people and peaceful protest. People’s voices must always be heard, and their human rights must be respected.

Artist Bio: Born in Ondo, Yisa Akinbolaji is an interdisciplinary artist from Lagos, Nigeria, who settled in Winnipeg in 1997. He describes himself as an experimentalist and emphasizes the significance of curiosity and productivity for his evolution. Yisa developed Remoglue medium for his painting and is founder of the Creative Foundation Inc.

Artist: Bîstyek @bistyek_
155 Bannatyne Ave.

“Light” in the artist’s two languages, English and Arabic ضوء Daw’, are merged and suggest hope during the darkest times. The lantern is intended to bring brightness, joy, and warmth, and serve as a reminder of the light at the end of the tunnel. 

Artist Bio: Bîstyek is a Winnipeg-based, self-taught artist. He was born in Syria from a Kurdish family and arrived in Canada as a refugee in 2017. Bîstyek’s style is dramatic and angular, with flashes of memories captured in unsettling shapes and sometimes saturated colour. His pieces are heavily influenced by his personal life and experiences. 

Artist: Anna Binta Diallo @annabintadiallo
155 Bannatyne Ave.

Silhouetted figures from archival photographs highlight multiple histories and the people who pass through this area over time. What draws people here, and why were some displaced? Skyscrapers, industrious warehouses, and financial institutions were erected, but the land was already inhabited by Indigenous people. Immigrants settled the area. There was a historic strike. Today, it is Winnipeg’s artistic core. 

Artist Bio: Anna Binta Diallo (b Dakar, Senegal) is a Canadian multi-disciplinary visual artist who investigates memory and nostalgia to create unexpected narratives surrounding identity. Her work has been widely exhibited in Canada and internationally. In 2021, she won the Barbara Sphor Memorial Prize and received the Black Designers of Canada award of Excellence. In 2022, she was longlisted for the Sobey Art Award. 

Lii Faam Michif Mashkawishiwak pi Tipeemishowak (Métis women are strong and free/own themselves)
Artist: Claire Johnston @clairejohnston__
474 Main St.

My lantern shines a light on the story of Annie Bannatyne, a well-educated Métis woman and philanthropist from the 19th century. Annie publicly shamed and whipped an anti-Métis bigot, exclaiming “this is how the women of Red River treat those who insult them”. This lantern is a tribute to the fierce spirit of Métis women past, present, and future, and exemplifies the unique fire within our hearts.

Artist Bio: Claire Johnston (they/she) is a Michif beadwork artist based in her Homeland of Winnipeg, MB. She is currently mentoring with Jennine Krauchi as part of the MAWA Foundation Mentorship Program. As an Autistic person, Claire’s art practice is informed by the strengthening of relationships — with herself, her kin and the natural world.

Magic Fish
Artist: Natalie Mark @floodkiss
137 Bannatyne Ave.

Magic Fish is designed to bring light and magic where extra stars are needed. The jackfish, walleye and catfish connect the urban landscape to nature and the nearby Red River, where all these fish can be found.

Artist Bio: Natalie is an illustrator and cartoonist. In addition to their illustrative practice, they have co-created an installation at Pride Toronto’s street fair, facilitated workshops, and created video work for Reel Asian International Film Festival. Recently, they have been teaching at their local art gallery. Natalie loves going to their local library and making zines!

Indigenous Perspectives on the Exchange
Artist: Justine Proulx @justineproulx
131 Albert St.

My lantern offers an Indigenous perspective on the history of the Exchange District. The first panel is dedicated to First Nations and the bison who sustained them, especially through the harshest of winters. The second panel represents the Red River Settlement and the dangerous and exhausting work of the Voyageurs. The third panel shows the Exchange District in more modern times, owing much of its growth to Métis and First Nations peoples.

Artist Bio: Justine is a Métis Tattooist & Mural Artist in Winnipeg, Manitoba. From a young age, she felt called to create and serve in industries that fuelled her creative passion and love for working closely with people. She is always looking for ways to honour her heritage, specifically with her woodland art/tattoos, and murals. 

Wiikondiwag : to feast together. 
Artist: Destiny Seymour @indigo_arrows
155 Bannatyne Ave.

My lantern was inspired by patterns on an ancient pot. Southern Manitoba has a rich history of ceramics dating back over 5000 years. These early cooking tools were our first beautifully decorated home goods. Many are currently living in the Manitoba Museum with over 3 million shards catalogued. They are relatively unknown by the general population. It’s time we celebrate these beautiful designs. 

Artist Bio: Destiny Seymour is an Anishinaabe interior designer based in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Her practice takes a critical look at the representation of Indigenous cultures within design and architecture. She works with patterns from local Indigenous pottery and bone tools that date from 400 to over 3000 years old. These patterns are picking up where her ancestors left off. 

The Sun Rises and Sets with You
Artist: Jackie Traverse @artbyjackietraverse
140 Bannatyne Ave.

The Sun Rises and Sets with You depicts a mother’s unconditional love of her children, the land and waters.

Artist Bio: Jackie Traverse is a multi-disciplinary Indigenous artist with a practice rooted in community. She draws her inspiration from her Ojibway culture and her community of Lake St. Martin First Nation, and her experiences as a native woman living in Winnipeg. She is widely known in art communities across Canada for her painting, drawing, documentary, and sculptural works that speak to the realities of being an Indigenous woman. 

Artist: Paul Robles @paulrobles_cut
510 Main St.

The birds and the skyline seen from studio windows make me think of Murmuration. I consider this epic natural phenomenon of large flocks flying together, twisting, and turning, and changing direction to understand the diaspora of the Exchange. The lanterns invite you to connect with its past as a hub of labour and commerce, to think of migrant/immigrant (sewing) factories, and to create your own narratives.

Artist Bio: Filipino born Winnipeg artist Paul Robles is known for his intricate cut paper works. He combines delicate craft with animist familiars, folklore, ghosts, and grief to explore psychological and emotional states. Recently, Robles has begun to incorporate sculptural elements into his work. 

Yagasuri Wheat 
Artist: Takashi Iwasaki
155 Bannatyne Ave.

Yagasuri Wheat reflects on the historical significance of the Exchange District, its modern-day function and iconic existence, and its future as a more culturally diverse and inclusive place. A traditional Japanese textile pattern of repeated arrow fletchers evokes wheat fields here. Between the spikes of wheat are nibs of a fountain pen that could be used by the artists and writers of the Exchange.

Artist Bio: Takashi Iwasaki was born in Japan and moved to Winnipeg at the age of 20 to study fine art and become a visual artist. Being immersed in the visual art scene and feeling rooted in the community, I have called Winnipeg my new hometown, where I have lived and worked for 20 years. 

Artist: Jonato Dalayoan @4two_design
171 Bannatyne Ave.

Unique patterns were created for each side of the lantern to represent the diversity within our community and the integration of different cultures working together. The design is intended to reflect the bustling creative energy of the Exchange today, while finding joy in the chaos. 

Artist Bio: Jonato Dalayoan is an award-winning graphic designer and visual artist whose work is distinguished by a unique blend of urban art and professional design sensibilities. Jonato prides himself in being versatile. He draws inspiration from his family, faith, heritage, nature, community, and artistic interests. With two decades of experience in leading agencies in the Prairies, he is currently the owner of 4two Design Inc. 

Freedom Road
Artist: Skye Spence @skyespnce
80 Rorie St.

Skye’s photography is inspired by the wild concrete village of Winnipeg and his love of texture and light. Light, in all its manifestations, is at the very heart and structure of life and the universe. Understanding how to work with it will always produce the most stunning images, no matter what the message might be.

Artist Bio: Visual artist and entrepreneur Skye Spence is an Indigenous cinematographer forging his craft in Winnipeg. He’s also the co-creator of NSTY Entertainment, which makes music videos like Charlie Fettah’s Never End. He works in Winnipeg, Montreal, Toronto, Minneapolis and beyond.

Artist: Eric Plamondon with Joe Kalturnyk @plameric, with support and collaboration from Hi-Rise
555 Main St.MCCC Obelisk

Feb 14 – March 9, 2024

A public art disruption bringing light to a prominently located War monument dedicated to the ‘Little Black Devils’ who volunteered to form a militia and take arms against the ‘Red River uprising’. For a hundred and forty years a colonial history was placed on a pedestal, first in front of City Hall, and then moved next to the Manitoba Museum. More than ever, today, our history is under construction, or maybe is under renovations, so that indigenous voices can re-emerge on this land. REDACTION will act as pedestal, as a statement of a nation still under construction, still understanding our narrative, bloody as it may be.

Artist Bio: Director of la Maison des artistes visuels francophones from 2013 to 2016 and currently Executive Director of Artspace, Eric Plamondon has embraced and created curatorial experiences over the last decade. Eric was Co-Chair of Nuit Blanche Winnipeg during its climb to being the art event of the year.

Darling, Pass Me My Teeth
Artist: Matea Radic @lovematea
84 ½ Albert St.

Darling, Pass Me My Teeth explores the dichotomy between transience and permanence, nostalgia and fragility, embodied through the juxtaposition of a pair of dentures and a single hard candy. These everyday objects, laden with personal and societal connotations, serve as a reminder of the inevitable life cycle and a reflection of indulgence.

Artist Bio: Matea Radic is a visual artist born in Sarajevo, BiH. She lives and works in Winnipeg, MB. She works in a variety of mediums including animation, painting and sculpture. Steeped in dark humour, her work explores themes of war, the ever-shifting landscape of childhood memories and the tender ache for familiarity. She is interested in how linguistic nuances can shape our perceptions and how straddling two culturally diverse worlds can inform our collective humanity. She has worked on animated music videos with Royal Canoe, Jim Croce and has designed a set for Begonia. She is currently in production on a short animated film, titled Paradajz which is being produced by the National Film Board of Canada.