Redefining Black Representation
During the month of February, we are partnering with influential Black Canadians who are expanding and redefining black representation to takeover the @cbc Instagram account for a day. Posts are created by these individuals in order to share authentic, self-determined stories.
Hadiya Roderique has a few jobs – she is a lawyer, researcher, speaker, consultant, journalist and broadcast commentator. An award-winning writer, she has bylines in The Walrus, The Globe and Mail, The National Post, This Magazine, and Flare, amongst others. She is most well known for her Globe and Mail piece "Black on Bay Street", which outlined her experiences as a young Black woman working in a Bay Street firm and continues to spark conversations about diversity, talent and inclusion in workplaces across Canada. In her spare time, she's finishing her Ph.D. at the Rotman School of Management, doing some fiction and non-fiction writing, screenplays, and getting back into coaching Ultimate Frisbee – she represented Canada at the World Championship level for almost 10 years. Her goals are to collect as much vinyl as possible and change the world.
Hadiya takes over February 11th.
Shadeen Francis, LMFT is a licensed marriage and family therapist, professor, and author specializing in sex therapy and social justice. She has been featured as a relationship expert on over 30 media platforms and speaks internationally on topics like sexual self-esteem, intimacy, and relationship negotiation. Shadeen's belief is that the world is built on the strengths of communities. This worldview has propelled her to focus on underserved populations: ethnic and cultural minorities, the kinky/poly/queer communities, and victims of economic hardship. Her work allows people of all backgrounds to improve their relationships and live in peace and pleasure.
Shadeen takes over February 13th.
Benny Bing is a self-taught Toronto-based artist of Nigerian descent. His passion for portraiture illuminated through the use of complimenting acrylic hues has built him a great following. His ability to capture the emotion on each of his subjects faces shines through in each piece. His cool recurring colour palate has built great depth in distinguishing his brand.
Benny has shown in major solo shows and several group exhibitions, alongside artists such as Fucci, Sandra Chevrier and Pure Evil, and has also been featured at major art fairs in Toronto and Miami. Benny Bing has produced commissions for Dave Chappelle, The Weeknd and Milos Raonic. His works are currently housed at The Norman Rockwell Museum in Massachusetts, The Bartholomew Condominiums, Maple Leafs Sports & Entertainment Headquarters in Toronto and can be found in private collections worldwide.
Benny takes over February 14th.
Kevin Allwood is a Canadian-Jamaican fashion designer, art director and photographer, highly regarded for his creations, sharp tailoring and couture gowns. He studied at the uOttawa in Computer Hardware Engineering, to finally divert into fashion at the age of 18. In 1986, he launched his brand NEVIK, selling at a kiosk at the Byward Market in Ottawa. He grew the brand and relocated to Montreal to open a shop on Laurier Street in 1988. NEVIK became a top destination in Canada with 5 stores in Montreal; The first independent Canadian designer to open a boutique in Ogilvy's on St. Catherine and de la Montagne, also a stunning storefront on St Laurent Blvd and 2nd floor Atelier making evening and wedding gowns. Kevin Allwood made it his mandate to produce his collections in Canada, supporting the local fashion industry and creating jobs within his private sewing atelier.
In 2008, Kevin Allwood took a sabbatical from the fashion industry, production and retail, to dedicate his time and energy to truly finding the meaning of "design your life" - It was a "personal evolution". He continued to practice Buddhism and became a devout vegetarian. He became concerned for the environment, animal welfare, and children's causes - which has been motivating his work since. In 2009, he created and published KA MAGAZINE, a Holistic Luxury publication focusing on ethical brands and creatives worldwide, sustainability and charity. KA is now a top Fashion, Design, Travel, Architecture and Lifestyle magazine meets art book.
In 2015, he launched the brand KEVIN ALLWOOD, a high-end label that puts transparency, ethical sourcing and organic materials at its core. The creative atelier and design studio is located in Toronto. The KEVIN ALLWOOD brand is sold through his concept store/gallery KASPACE in Toronto, a creative retail space that seamlessly marries his ambitions into one conceptual reality; ethical fashion, design, and photography art.
In February 2019, Kevin will open the first KASPACE Cafe - a new vegetarian/vegan cafe - focused on an overall health & wellness experience - serving baked goods, breakfast, brunch and lunch.
Kevin takes over February 19th.
My name is Josef Adamu, and I am a Nigerian-Canadian creative born and raised in Toronto.
My passions involve sports, music, and visual arts, but most importantly highlighting stories through the lens of visual projects. On a day-to-day basis, I stumble into various departments of work ranging from creative direction, production, consulting, photography, and modelling.
Over the past year, I've been developing a creative agency named Sunday School, which focuses on embracing black narratives through brand collaborations globally. Growing up Canadian, I've always been intrigued by the high levels of diversity in our communities, and I believe that everyone has a unique story to offer the world. Thus, my duty is to deliver stories from my perspective as beautifully as I can.
Josef takes over February 22nd.
Michèle Pearson Clarke
Michèle Pearson Clarke is a Trinidad-born artist who works in photography, film, video and installation. Using archival, performative and process-oriented strategies, her work explores the personal and political possibilities afforded by considering experiences of emotions related to longing and loss. Recent exhibitions and screenings include Here We Are Here: Black Canadian Contemporary Art at Le Musée des beaux-arts de Montréal (2018); All That is Left Unsaid at ltd los angeles (2018); Black Radical Imagination at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago (2016); Parade of Champions at Ryerson Image Centre, Toronto (2015); and a solo exhibition, A Welcome Weight on My Body (2018) at Gallery 44 Centre for Contemporary Art, Toronto.
Based in Toronto, Clarke holds an MSW from the University of Toronto, and she received her MFA from Ryerson University in 2015, when she was awarded both the Ryerson University Board of Governors Leadership Award and Medal and the Ryerson Gold Medal for the Faculty of Communication + Design. From 2016-2017, Clarke was artist-in-residence at Gallery 44, and she was the EDA Artist-in-Residence in the Department of Arts, Culture and Media at the University of Toronto Scarborough for the 2018 winter semester. Clarke's writing has been published in Canadian Art, Transition Magazine and Momus, and in 2018, she was a speaker at the eighth TEDxPortofSpain. Clarke is currently a contract lecturer in the Documentary Media Studies program at Ryerson University, and she is a finalist for the Toronto Friends of the Visual Arts 2019 Artist Prize.
Michèle takes over February 25th.
Inemesit (pronounced "Ee-Nem-Eh-Sit") is a Canadian plus size fashion and lifestyle blogger based in Alberta. As the premier plus size fashion authority in Calgary and an emerging voice in the Edmonton landscape, her goal is to be a body positive advocate in an area of Canada in which plus size and curvy women are still finding their voice. Inemesit believes that every woman, despite their shape or size, has the right to wear what they want and feel good doing it.
Born in Nigeria and raised in cities across the globe, Inemesit's style is greatly influenced by her Nigerian heritage, the many cultures she experienced growing up as well as the diversity present here in Canada. Her eye for colour and ability to pattern mix alongside wearing trends that exclude plus bodies earns Inemesit her signature look. She is never one to shy away from dressing outside of her comfort zone in hopes of inspiring other plus size and curvy women to do the same.
Inemesit started her blogging career in 2015 following a one-year picture per day Instagram challenge that helped build her fellowship. Now her brand has grown to encompass not only her blog, but a new YouTube channel where she showcases her travels as a visibly plus Black woman and a growing social media platform where she continues to break fashion rules one crop top at a time.
Inemesit takes over February 27th.