Indigenous Artist Market Collective I.A.M.
The Indigenous Artist Market Collective Collective is supported by an EndPoverty Edmonton initiative. This is an ad hoc committee that aims to develop an Indigenous Artist Market Co-operative. In 2016, City Council approved the road map or community action plan to end poverty. Goal #1: Toward True Reconciliation; Action #2: Create spaces, events and opportunities to show and grow the talents of Indigenous Edmontonian’s. The purpose of IAM Collective is to ensure local Indigenous artists and artisans have access to the market. It is to increase awareness of Indigenous authentic and contemporary art forms. It is to provide a local context of Indigenous art in Edmonton and to increase the market opportunities for artists. Currently there is little to no Indigenous artist/artisan owned or operated venues in Edmonton where Indigenous people can currently sell their wares and showcase their artistic talents. Since our Grand opening at the Edmonton Downtown farmer’s market in May of 2018 we have strived to bring the YEG community authentic, handcrafted indigenous art. Our artists have also taken from this opportunity the mentor ship of established artists, art supply swaps, business workshops, social media exposure, increased business and following, and so many other countless rewards. Most importantly we have created a circle of support, family, and knowledge for the artists, and the YEG community. As in many cultures the circle is in the roots of many indigenous teachings and spiritual beliefs. Ours circle has been made strong, and will get stronger by joining with other circles. Community circles, professional circles, festival circles, YEG circles, all coming together to make something bigger. Now nearly 50 members strong , we are eager to keep growing and improving what we have created together. Partnerships and support from community leaders such as ATB will help us break down barriers, and bridge the gaps to continue showcasing our art, our culture, and our people. "Our artists are a real mixed bag of nuts as we jokingly say, a mix of youth, established artists, seniors, those struggling with food and home security, some working on sobriety, students, single parents, but all equal in our circle. I am proud to stand with them, to work and grow with them, and look forward to introducing them to our Edmonton community, and eventually the world." Lorrie Lawrence - I.A.M Artist/Event Coordinator & Indigenous Artisan "I see us like blades of sweet grass...blowing in the wind together ...yet alone....but when braided together, we are strong and fierce.... Full if good medicine and the teachings of the old ones…."