Mandy Salter is the Director and Curator of the Art Gallery of Mississauga. With two decades of experience in museums, academia and the private sector, including experience as a chief curator, collections manager, project manager and private consultant, Salter brings a new level of expertise to the AGM.
Salter graduated magna cum laude with an M.A. in art history and classical civilizations from the University of Miami in 1996. Her B.A. Honours in studio and art history is from the University of Windsor in 1994.
Salter’s experience includes strategic and curatorial work for the City of Windsor regarding their public art collection and cultural heritage holdings and with the Art Gallery of Windsor where she was chief curator and collections manager.
Her curatorial and scholarly achievements, combined with her collaborative spirit and skills in management, administration and community relations make her ideally suited to strengthen the organization and engage and motivate community members. Salter brings knowledge of the nuances in working with and fostering community.
Sadaf Zuberi, is a multi-disciplinary professional with international development experience. She has a Master’s in Business Administration from the Institute of Business Administration and was the International Visitor Leadership Program Fellow (IVLP) with the Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, USA in 2008. Zuberi blends her commitment to social change with her focused expertise in financial and grants management, stakeholder engagement as well as photography and filming. She is committed to creating synergies, building networks, and ensuring efficient functioning of financial and administrative systems to maximize organizational capacity. Having over 10 years of experience working with civil society, community consortia, donor agencies, corporate and non-profit organizations, as well as the public sector, Zuberi is currently working as the Business Operations Manager at the Art Gallery of Mississauga.
Sharada Eswar’s passion for words, spoken and written, began at an early age. She hosted her first Children’s Program on All India Radio when she was 11. A trained Indian classical musician (Carnatic School), she was part of the team representing India at the India Abroad show in Paris and New York. She was also one of the three chosen by the Centres Culturels des Lions Clubs de Paris to present Indian culture in France. Since then, Eswar has been performing and teaching in Toronto and internationally, drawing on her own South Asian ancestry and heritage. Recently she curated and hosted Kootir, South Asian Storytelling, at the Toronto Festival of Storytelling. She has been invited by Royal Ontario Museum to be a speaker for their Ornamenting the Ordinary Program. Through the Ontario Arts Council’s Artist in Education program, she teaches storytelling through shadow puppetry and Narrative Writing for the Toronto District School Board’s International Languages Program.
Eswar is a published children’s author: her book, Ram’s Caps, was recently published by Harcourt, Canada and she is working on two graphic novels. Currently, she is the Community Activator with the Art Gallery of Mississauga and a Core Artist with Jumblies’ Theatre, a Community Arts organization in Toronto, where she works extensively with diverse communities.
Keisha Nadi-ann Erwin is a beadwork artist, jewelry maker, and filmmaker with a passion for doing work grounded in anti-oppressive practice and that is community-focused. Keisha is an Urban Afro-Indigenous youth, who is finishing their undergraduate degree in Multicultural and Indigenous Studies at York University. They are Jamaican and Nihithaw (Woods Cree) from treaty 6 territory and a band member of the Lac La Ronge Indian Band in North-Central Saskatchewan. Their artistic focus is around identities and reclamation of identities. They are a non-binary youth in the process of reclaiming a 2S identity and their work focuses on navigating oppression and multiple identities.
Keisha Erwin has several years of experience on different student-run organizations such as York Federation of Students Access Centre (focusing on making campus more accessible and raising awareness about disability justice) and an elected position on the Aboriginal Students Association at York. They have also worked as the Aboriginal Students Success and Transitions Coordinator at the Centre for Aboriginal Student Services and as an intern for the Aboriginal Curatorial Collective. They have created a film as a participant in a 2S/ Indigiqueer workshop that was facilitated by Thirza Cuthand and Fallon Simard. Their film was screened at the Toronto Queer Film Festival and will be screened in Vancouver Queer Arts Festival in June. They are currently on Planned Parenthoods LGBTQ+ Youth Advisory Committee and are participating in an arts residency with Children’s Peace Theatre.
Robin is a community thinker, creative strategist, teacher, entrepreneur, and cultural developer. He carries expereince in creating brand identities, innovative communication campaigns and game-changing strategic marketing tactics across all industries in Canada. All of his engagements re-examine the meaningful purpose and creative strategy of the organization. In the cultural arena as in the private sector, these exercises require research insights, alternative thinking and unique facilitation skills. Robin’s award-winning work for the development of the Culture and Heritage Institute Symposia was part of a larger strategy to investigate current and compelling issues in culture and related industries. Globally-sourced guests provided compelling examples of leading edge thinking and profound insights into practice. ‘Neighbourhood Diaries. Stories from where I live.’ is an exploratory project for children, that engages artists, writers, Harbourfront and community centers across Toronto in an 8-week examination of creativity. From the development of the workshop prototype through to the gallery exhibit at Harbourfront, the experiences and the work produced successfully focused on the compelling child’s creative voice. As a sessional teacher of Think Tank at the Ontario College of Art and Design University students across all disciplines have an opportunity to investigate design thinking, to reflect on its relevance, and to face their self-determined path.