FRIDAY, APRIL 17 | 4:30 PM PST (7:30 EST) Vancouver Art Gallery

New to Zoom? Learn how to register and attend a webinar here »


In response to the temporary closure of the exhibition spaces due to the current global health pandemic, the Gallery has launched Art Connects to encourage dialogue and connection in the era of physical distancing.

Every Tuesday and Friday, the Gallery will stream live and interactive conversations into your homes, featuring guests from local and international arts communities. Everyone is invited to join through the webinar platform Zoom.

As we navigate these strange and uncertain times, it’s important to remember that art has the power to connect individuals, communities and cultures. No matter its form, art encourages communication, broadens perspectives, enriches the mind and renews the spirit.

SPEAKERS: Selina Boan, Tyler Pennock, Kaitlyn Purcell and Emily Dundas Oke

In celebration of National Poetry Month, the Vancouver Art Gallery is pleased to virtually host Indigenous Brilliance’s Spring Reading Session, presented in conversation with the exhibition Shuvinai Ashoona: Mapping Worlds.

Organized by Room Magazine and Massy Books, Indigenous Brilliance is a quarterly reading and performance series dedicated to raising the voices of Indigenous women, Two-Spirit and queer writers, artists and storytellers. It is a collective approach to realizing resurgence, a coming together with the shared desire of celebrating Indigenous stories and the different ways we think, share and perform.

The Vancouver Art Gallery is situated on traditional, ancestral, and unceded territories of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), and səlilwətaɬ (Tsleil-waututh) Nations, and is respectful of the Indigenous stewards of the land it occupies, whose rich cultures are fundamental to artistic life in Vancouver and to the work of the Gallery. Indigenous Brilliance, Massy Books and Room Magazine also acknowledge that this event takes place across Turtle Island.

Questions? Submit them when you register or during the Zoom presentation using the Q&A function.

This discussion will be moderated by Emily Dundas Oke, co-organizer of Indigenous Brilliance, with Stephanie Bokenfohr, Adult Programs Coordinator at the Vancouver Art Gallery.


Selina Boan is a moniyâw/nehiyaw poet living on the traditional, unceded territories of the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh peoples. She has been published extensively in literary magazines across Canada, won the Gold National Magazine Award for poetry in 2017, and was shortlisted for the 2016 CBC Poetry Prize. In 2018, she received Room Magazine’s Emerging Writer Award, and her work was included in The Best Canadian Poetry in English. She currently works as a Poetry Editor for Rahila’s Ghost Press.

Tyler Pennock is a two-spirit writer, educator and storyteller, who was adopted into a Cree and Métis family around the Lesser Slave Lake area in Alberta. They are a graduate of Guelph University’s Creative Writing MFA program and currently live in Toronto, ON.

Kaitlyn Purcell is an artist, poet, storyteller and scholar. She is a proud member of Smith’s Landing First Nation and the Writing Revolution in Place creative research collective. She is a PhD student at the University of Calgary, studying Indigenous Literatures, Creative Writing and Community-Based Learning. Her work is inspired by her experiences as a troubled adolescent in Edmonton, detached from her Dene roots. She has won numerous awards for her creative work, such as the Metatron Prize for Rising Authors (2019), the Alberta Foundation for the Arts Young Artist Prize (2017) and the Stephen Kapalka Memorial Prize in Creating Writing (2015).

Emily Dundas Oke is an emerging curator, interdisciplinary artist and arts administrator. She is interested in conceptualizing and recognizing the agency of embodied knowledge and shared histories. As a Metis, Scottish and nehiyaw iskwew, she is grateful to be an organizer and a co-curator of Indigenous Brilliance.

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