The Artist in Residence program is part of the City’s continuing effort to encourage community involvement in the arts. The program invites a professional artist to work with City staff and the community to identify and develop creative artworks and projects in Victoria.
The Artist in Residence program is open to artists residing in British Columbia Selected artists participate in the City’s planning process over a two-year term.
Victoria-based dancer and visual artist Kemi Craig is the City’s third Artist in Residence. She will serve for the 2022–2024 term.
Craig is a graduate from the Emily Carr University of Art Design with a Masters degree in Fine Art. Since graduating, she has performed through local arts centres as well as across B.C. and Canada.
Craig’s film and video work has been exhibited at local galleries such as Legacy Art Gallery, Flux Gallery and the Ministry of Casual Living, as well as the Victoria International Film Festival and Antimatter Media Arts Festival. She has also worked with the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria and Xchanges Gallery as an educator and curator.
Read the original announcement of Kemi Craig’s appointment.
Kemi’s Projects in Victoria
Storefront Animation at 707 Douglas Street
As part of her role, Kemi has animated windows of a storefront at 707 Douglas Street. A series of video loops entitled the space between was displayed in January 2023.
The window currently features Kemi Craig's Afrofuturism animation, a video projection in response to science fiction writer N.K. Jemisin's question, “How Long `til Black Future Month?” Kemi’s newest video in the storefront encourages viewers to reflect on what Afrofuturism offers: a way of thinking that not only values the future of the African diaspora but also traditional knowledge.
In February, Kemi invited two local artists to showcase their films in the window space. This installation was made with support from FLUX Media Gallery. For more information, please visit the Gallery's website.
The City's Storefront Exhibitions program started in 2019, when local artists created textile art, time-based works and mixed media installations for available storefront windows. During the pandemic, artists and illustrators pivoted to animate the windows with vinyl wraps.
For more info about Kemi’s programming during her residency, please visit her Instagram @kemi.craig.
Past: Workshop - Indigo Explorations with Kemi Craig
Kemi Craig connected Black history and contemporary experiences by exploring relationships with indigo alongside local fibre artists Lauren Fairweather and Valérie De Walker.
Growing, harvesting, building vats and dyeing, the goal of the indigo dyeing workshop that took place earlier this month was to reclaim ancestorial knowledge and help mend communities through making something beautiful
Past: Request for Sounds of Victoria
Each summer, CFUV 101.9 FM and the City of Victoria host Eventide, an all-ages, free concert series showcasing Victoria’s independent music scene. In 2023, Kemi Craig asked for the community's help to create public art as part of her curated session at Eventide.