The Covid-19 pandemic has devastated our global community, and its impact on our arts sector has been extensive and heartbreaking.
And yet, over the last year, Kingston's artists - despite their own struggles, anxieties and hardships - have stepped up to offer their neighbours virtual dance parties and porch-side plays, art kits delivered to doorsteps and plexiglassed performances, online concerts and Instagram poetry. These offerings of expression, reflection, connection and conversation have uplifted our spirits and helped to heal our continually breaking hearts.
As always, our artists have been here for us.
And now, Kingston, we’re looking to you to be here for our artists. They need your support.
Our artists have always been essential for our community’s well-being, and they will be essential for our recovery.
Artists are essential. What can you do to support Kingston’s artists?
ASK your artist friends and neighbours how they are doing and how you can help. Get to know Kingston’s amazing creative community.
ENGAGE with Kingston’s artists by searching #ygkarts on social media. Follow, share, subscribe, comment, and show them some love!
BUY local art if you have the means to do so. Attend virtual performances and film screenings, purchase books by Kingston authors and poets, take online classes and workshops, buy and enjoy local music, and give Kingston-made art and crafts as gifts. (Join our Executive Director Kirsi in her commitment to only purchase or make local art as gifts in 2021, and use the hashtag #onlyygkarts to share what you give and receive!)
VISIT our local galleries and arts retailers, when it is safe to do so. Check out the Tett Centre for Creativity and Learning’s comprehensive guide of Kingston’s art galleries and other places to enjoy and purchase the incredible work of our local artists: https://www.tettcentre.org/blog/showcasing-your-artwork-locally
LEARN about how artists are faring in the pandemic and envisioning the future of the arts by taking a look at these recent survey results and viewing the insightful and inspiring artist presentations from our December 4 Essential Arts event.
READ about the Basic Income movement to learn how a Basic Income program would help artists and other precarious workers, and consider signing the petition in support of Bill C-273, Canada’s first Basic Income bill. Learn more about The Case for Basic Income and the Arts campaign.
EMAIL Kingston’s MP Mark Gerretsen and MPP Ian Arthur to voice your concerns, support, and ideas for how our governments can better support artists.
REACH OUT to us to learn more about how you can help.
Artists are relentless, necessary, cooperative, awesome, important, undervalued, underpaid, the future, inspiring, the force, indomitable, together, transformative, cute, resourceful, talented, determined, scrappy, amazing, resilient, vital, brave, full of surprises and ESSENTIAL...
...and artists need your support.
Our thanks to Vince Perez of Everlovin’ Press, Josh Lyon of AKAFLK Productions, Abena Beloved Green, and Kay Kenney and Emma Detomasi of Movement Market for their time and talents, Creative Display Technologies and Gilmore Reproductions for their support, and a special thanks to Play! Gaming and Entertainment for providing vital cultural sector funding that makes possible initiatives including our Artists are Essential campaign.