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Indigenous Futures

in Public Art Galleries & Museums


Heather Campbell

Inuit Art Foundation

Heather Campbell (Inuk) is an artist and arts administrator originally from Kikiak (Rigolet), Nunatsiavut, NL currently residing in North West River, NL. Her art practice encompasses painting and drawing. Campbell holds a BFA at Wilfred Grenfell College of Fine Art at Memorial University of Newfoundland. In addition to her artistic practice, she has written for Library and Archives Canada and the Inuit Art Quarterly. Campbell is also a former curator, having worked for the Inuit Art Centre of Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada and was Curatorial Assistant at the Indigenous Art Department of the National Gallery of Canada. Currently, she is the Artist Liaison at the Inuit Art Foundation.

David Garneau

Artist, Curator, and Professor, Visual Arts, University of Regina

David Garneau (Métis) is a Professor of Visual Arts at the University of Regina. He is a painter, curator and critical art writer who engages creative expressions of Indigenous contemporary ways of being. Garneau curated Kahwatsiretátie: The Contemporary Native Art Biennial (Montreal, 2020) with assistance from Faye Mullen and rudi aker; co-curated, with Kathleen Ash Milby, Transformer: Native Art in Light and Sound, National Museum of the American Indian, New York (2017); With Secrecy and Despatch, with Tess Allas, for the Campbelltown Art Centre, Sydney, Australia (2016); and Moving Forward, Never Forgetting, with Michelle LaVallee, at the Mackenzie Art Gallery (2015). Garneau has given keynotes on issues such as: mis/appropriation; re/conciliation; public art; museum displays; and Indigenous contemporary art. His performance, Dear John, featuring the spirit of Louis Riel meeting with John A. Macdonald statues, was presented in Regina, Kingston, and Ottawa. Garneau is this year’s recipient of the Governor General’s Award in Visual and Media Arts: Outstanding Achievement.

Photo credit: Mika Abbott

Watch the video about David’s 2023 Governor General’s Award in Visual and Media Arts

Image Description: This image of David Garneau shows the 61 year old artist in his studio. Sections of his realist paintings can be seen: eggshells on a book on the left, tulips on the right, a stone hammer below. David's head and torso are shown. He is dressed in black, has salt and pepper hair, mustache and short goatee, glasses, he is a white-passing Metis, and is smiling.
Heather is smiling and looking directly into the camera. She has short brown hair parted to the right. She is wearing a gray jacket, dark shirt, long necklace and standing outside with a long fence in the background.

Heather George

Executive Director, Woodland Cultural Centre, Six Nations of the Grand River Territory

Heather George is a mother, gardener, beader and curator. Appointed to the role of Executive Director at Woodland Cultural Centre in March 2023 she brings two decades of experience in community based, Indigenous knowledge based curatorial approaches to her role. Heather is Kanien’kehá:ka (Mohawk) from Akwesasne on her father’s side and Euro-Canadian on her mothers. Heather is also a PhD Candidate at the University of Waterloo where she is researching the history of Haudenosaunee museum practice, additionally she has spent the past year serving as the president of the Canadian Museums Association board of directors where she has tirelessly championed the “Moved to Action” report in response to TRC call to action #67.

Camille Georgeson-Usher

Curator, Writer, and Assistant Professor, Modern and Contemporary Indigenous Art, University of British Columbia

Camille Georgeson-Usher is a Coast Salish / Sahtu Dene / Scottish scholar, curator, and writer from Galiano Island, BC and is Assistant Professor of Modern and Contemporary Indigenous Art at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, BC. Through her research, she is interested in how peoples move together through space, how public art becomes a site for gathering, and intimacies with the everyday. She uses her practice as a long-distance runner as a methodology for embodied theory and alternative forms of sensing place.

Camille’s website

Zainub Verjee

Executive Director, Galeries Ontario / Ontario Galleries

Accomplished, experienced and visionary, Zainub Verjee is the laureate of the 2020 Governor General’s Visual and Media Arts Award for Outstanding Contribution. A public intellectual, she was elected as Senior Fellow of Massey College and appointed as McLaughlin College Fellow at York University. Recognizing her extraordinary contribution to arts and culture, she was conferred with honorary doctorates by OCAD University, Toronto and NSCAD University, Halifax as well as Simon Fraser University and University of Victoria, British Columbia, Canada.

A recognized thought leader and senior executive in Arts, Culture and Heritage sector, with experience in leading and managing cultural institutions, cultural organizations, cultural departments, international contemporary art centres and cultural agencies, she has shaped culture policy at all levels of governments and contributed to building of cultural institutions and organizations in Canada and internationally. In the 1990s, Zainub was the executive director of the Western Front Society in Vancouver, B.C.. Later she held positions at Canada Council for the Arts in Ottawa, Department of Canadian Heritage in Gatineau and at the City of Mississauga.

As a scholar, she has been part of many research projects and think-tanks to strengthen post-secondary art education in Canada and Internationally as well as published extensively.  Her recent scholarly publication is a co-authored chapter The Making of the Black Star Collection at the Image Center in Facing the Black Star Other recent publications that documents her work are Variable Conditions – Para-computational Arts in Canada, 1965–1995 and Other Places: Reflections on Media Arts in Canada Her other writings can be found at the Galleries West Magazine while some of her new interviews can be found here

Currently, she is leading major national digital data projects to bring cultural institutions within the digital ecosystem and activating the implementation of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s 2015 report (TRC). Specifically, the recommendation of #67 of the TRC that contributes to a review of museum policies and best practices to determine the level of compliance with the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

More about Zainub