The Design Wo/ManiFesT.O. kick-off public panel discussion was part of the 2019 Design TO Festival (formerly the Toronto Design Offsite Festival) and took the form of a discourse salon. The panel of community-based activists, writers, critics, and makers told their stories of making change in their communities. The audience was then asked to share their own stories or ask the panel questions and end with a public open-microphone session encouraging guests to tell us their visions for Toronto.
David Meslin is the Creative Director of Unlock Democracy Canada, the founder of the Toronto Public Space Committee and the co-founder of Spacing Magazine.
Ajeev Bhatia is currently the Manager of Policy/Community Connections with the Centre for Connected Communities, an organization which connects community builders, translates knowledge across sectors, and celebrates community building to support communities to solutions to complex social issues.
Sabina Ali is the Chair and one of the founding members of Thorncliffe Park Women’sCommittee—created by residents to advance a transformative vision for Thorncliffe Park and the surrounding community.
Sara Ratzlaff is a recent philosophy graduate from the University of Toronto and the Public Art Columnist for Spacing Magazine. She is interested in philosophical theories that focus on the nature of public art and public space, and hopes to debunk some of the presuppositions we have about these concepts.
Kristin Wong-Tam is a third-term Toronto City Councillor and is currently serving the communities of Toronto-Centre (Ward 13) in the new 25 ward system.
Environmental Design Program, OCAD University
The research team has begun planning the second forum in collaboration with potential sponsors, and aimed for Scarborough neighbourhoods, to gather/listen to citizen efforts for community based creative placemaking. In conjunction with faculty partners, early plans for a ‘Creative Practice as Protest Workshop’ with Colloqate.Org, an award winning community platform for racial, social, and cultural equity in city-making, are being discussed, potentially aligned with a student competition for new ideas for Toronto. Stories and information collected from all events, forums, workshops, as well as interviews, will form a rich database to explore and ideally manifest a creative artefact, be it video, book or toolkit for planning Toronto 2020 and beyond.
Be a part of the conversation at www.ocadu.ca/womanifesto