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Canada’s leading contemporary outdoor and online art fair

July 12 – 14, 2024.

Joseph Sagaj

City
Scarborough

...Joseph Sagaj is an Anishnaabe Artist is from Neskantaga, a small, remote, and isolated fly-in community in northern Ontario which is 430 km north of Thunder Bay. Population: 300. Joseph grew up in this small community listening to stories of legends, heroes, and adventure. He believes, from the influences in the community, that art is broad, meaningful, and versatile.

Joseph graduated from the Ontario College of Art in 1985 and has since accomplished numerous private and public commissions. His artwork “Rekindle” was one of his works selected along with his other artwork be the wraparound on the iconic Toronto Sign at Nathan Phillips Square. The new wrap recognizes UNESCO’s International Decade of Indigenous Languages, which focuses on the rights of Indigenous language speakers worldwide. The “Rekindle” artwork emphasizes the culture, language, and art of his Anishnaabe ancestry and is prominently displayed at Nathan Phillips Square at City Hall.

His portfolio includes the Seneca College 30-foot floor terrazzo installation called the “Circle of Indigenous Knowledge” completed in 2019. This design won awards in the terrazzo industry in Canada and the United States. His other artistic accomplishments are the “Seven Stages” Project which was commissioned by the Ministry of the Attorney General Indigenous Justice Division. These seven paintings are proudly displayed in the front lobby of their office in downtown Toronto.

In 2021, Joseph was one of three finalists for “Aboriginal Artist of the Year” with the Toronto Arts Council. In 2022, he was nominated for “Indigenous Entrepreneur of the Year” by CanadianSME Small Business Magazine.

Joseph currently works as an Artist and Artistic Consultant for Anishnaabe Health Toronto and Miziwe Biik Aboriginal Employment & Training Centre for their new building at the Distillery District.

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