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President's Speaker Series

OCAD U is hosting one of the UK’s most influential curators Dr. Zoé Whitley and famed Star Trek Discovery costume designer Gersha Phillips, as part of the President’s Speaker Series featuring BIPOC leaders in art and design.

Sustaining Black Creativity:
A conversation with Dr. Zoé Whitley

January 11, 2022 - 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. (EST)
Register for Sustaining Black Creativity: A conversation with Dr. Zoe Whitley

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Dr. Zoé Whitley
Photo Credit: James Gifford-Mead

Join us for a conversation with one of the UK’s most influential curators and cultural leaders, Dr. Zoé Whitley on the future of Black art. The free-ranging conversation will cover the sustainability of diverse talent in the arts community, including how we can support the mosaic of artistic talent, while building a future where BIPOC artists thrive, including our galleries, monuments, street art and infrastructure. This includes the present and future of expanding art history and shifting institutional frameworks for artists. The talk will be hosted by Dr. Fatona, Tier 2 Canada Research Chair in Canadian Black Diasporic Cultural Production.    

About Dr. Zoé Whitley

Dr. Zoé Whitley is an American art historian and curator who has been Director of Chisenhale Gallery since 2020. Based in London, UK, she has held curatorial positions at the Victoria and Albert Museum, the Tate galleries, and the Hayward Gallery. She is a Black leader in the arts and is at the forefront of empowering diverse voices. Her work promotes exceptional Black and BIPOC art through local activism that reverberates globally. Her research interests include contemporary artists and art practices from Africa and the African diaspora. The sustainability of diverse talent is in the minds of many in the artistic community.

picture of Andrea Fatona
Dr. Andrea Fatona
About Dr. Andrea Fatona

Dr. Andrea Fatona is an independent curator, Associate Professor in the Faculty of Art at OCAD University and a Tier 2 Canada Research Chair in Canadian Black Diasporic Cultural Production. She is concerned with issues of equity within the sphere of the arts and the pedagogical possibilities of art works produced by Black Canadians in articulating broader perspectives of Canadian identities. Her broader interest is in the ways art, ‘culture’ and ‘education’ can be employed to illuminate complex issues that pertain to social justice, citizenship, belonging and nationhood.  She is the recipient of awards from the Canada Council for the Arts, the Ontario Arts Council, the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada and was the 2017/18 OCAD U-Massey Fellow.

Dr. Andrea Fatona will guide Dr. Whitley in free-ranging conversation on how she thinks we can sustain the multiplicity of artistic talent, while building the future where BIPOC artists thrive, including in our galleries, our monuments, street art, and art infrastructure.

How to Dress a Terran Emperor: A Respectful Dialogue with Costume Designer Gersha Phillips

Postponed. Check back to register for newly scheduled date/time (formerly scheduled for February 11, 2022 at 10 a.m)

Join us for a conversation with winning costume designer Gersha Phillips who will discuss the thinking and making of costumes for Star Trek: Discovery and her long list of film and television credits. Topics will include the role of 3D printing and other innovative technologies in costume design; diversity and inclusion in the film and television industry; and tips on where design students might find opportunities in the Toronto film and television industry. The talk will be hosted by OCAD University’s Dean of the Faculty of Design, Dr. Dori Tunstall. 
 

headshot of Gersha Phillips in front of a grey screen
Gersha Phillips
About Gersha Phillips

Gersha Phillips' merits an international eye for fashion. Born in England to parents of Caribbean and African descent, she and her family moved to Canada when she was twelve years old. Since then, her work has carried her all over the world. 

Phillips is currently designing for the feature film, “The Woman King” in South Africa, starring Viola Davis, directed by Gina Prince-Bythewood, scheduled to be released in 2022. Phillips is best known for her Costume Design work on the TV series Star Trek: Discovery (2017-2021), for which she won the Canadian Alliance of Film and Television Costume Arts and Design (CAFTCAD) award for Best Costume Design in TV Sci-Fi/ Fantasy in 2021. 

Phillips and her team have been nominated for three Costume Designers Guild (CDG) Awards, an Online Film and Television (OFTA) Award and a Canadian Alliance of Film and Television Costume Arts & Design (CAFTCAD) award. Alongside the seasons of Star Trek: Discovery, Gersha has designed eight Trek Shorts, also streaming on CBS All Access. Phillips was the Consultant on the first four episodes and Co-Designer of episode 101 of the eagerly anticipated Star Trek: Strange New World. After Star Trek: Discovery, rumour has it she’ll beam onto another Star Trek endeavour, keeping her creative energy in orbit for a while to come.  

Phillip's film credits include, but are not limited to, "My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2", “Miles Ahead'', "Life", and "The Mortal Instruments: City Of Bones", which was nominated for a Canadian Screen Award. Limited television credits include "Incorporated", "House of Cards" and “Falling Skies.” Gersha is a member of IATSE 892, 829, and 873 Toronto. Phillips is a founding member of CAFTCAD, the Canadian Alliance of Film and Television Costume Arts and Design in 2008. 

Her costume design work was shown in exhibitions such as Otherworldly: The Art of Canadian Costume Design (2001 – 2012) at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), the 12th Annual Art of Television Costume Design Exhibition (2018) at the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising (FIDM) Museum in Los Angeles and in 2022 (dates TBA), Phillips Star Trek Discovery fans will be able to view Phillips costumes live and in person at the Smithsonian Museum in Washington, DC which is scheduled for 2022.

Picture of Dori Tunstall smiling
Dr. Dori Tunstall
About Dr. Dori Tunstall

Dr. Tunstall is a design anthropologist, public intellectual and design advocate who works at the intersections of critical theory, culture and design. As Dean of the Faculty of Design at OCAD University, she is the first Black and Black female dean of a faculty of design. She is a recognized leader in the decolonization of art and design education.  

With a global career, Dori served as Associate Professor of Design Anthropology and Associate Dean at Swinburne University in Australia. She wrote the biweekly column Un-Design for The Conversation, Australia. In the U.S., she taught at the University of Illinois at Chicago, organized the U.S. National Design Policy Initiative and served as a director of Design for Democracy. Industry positions include UX strategist for Sapient Corporation and Arc Worldwide. Dr. Tunstall holds a Ph.D. in Anthropology from Stanford University and a B.A. in Anthropology from Bryn Mawr College.

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bobbyh@ocadu.ca
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(416) 977-6000 x482
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OCAD U is hosting one of the UK’s most influential curators Dr. Zoé Whitley and famed Star Trek Discovery costume designer Gersha Phillips, as part of the President’s Speaker Series featuring BIPOC leaders in art and design.   

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Beatrice Leanza

In Conversation with Beatrice Leanza, Executive Director of Museum of Art, Architecture and Technology, (MAAT) in Lisbon.

Join Beatrice Leanza for a thought-provoking conversation with Dr. Sara Diamond, President and Vice-Chancellor of OCAD University, as part of the Sherman Foundations President’s Speaker Series. 

Leanza will discuss the changing role of the museum as an evolving space of intersectionalities in her talk, An Open Forum – A Stage – A School: Prototyping the Future Museum. The stunning MAAT is known as a modern cross-cultural hub that combines a space for debate, discovery, critical thinking and international dialogue.

Join us live! Wednesday, May 27 from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. (Eastern Standard Time)

 

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In Conversation with Beatrice Leanza, Executive Director of Museum of Art, Architecture and Technology, (MAAT) in Lisbon.
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