Indigenous Arts Conference


Indigenous Art Conference | 2019 | Ottawa

A free event for learning, sharing and empowering Indigenous artists.

Tansi! Tawnshi! Tawow! Shé:kon! Annii! Boozhoo! Kwey Kwey! ᐊᐃ

The AACC is very pleased to be working on this small project with friends, artists and community members.

The purpose of this project is to provide basic art workshops to people who need more access to learning traditional Indigenous art forms, are subject to restricted budgets and cannot normally afford Indigenous arts workshops,  or have been disconnected from their family/community and culture and seek to (re)connect with traditional teachings. Secondarily, the conference will offer a gathering place central to many urban FNMI individuals for evening performance workshops and knowledge sharing.

We welcome all who share our concerns for endangered Indigenous art form and artists and thank those who have already offered their support to this small initiative including Elders, knowledge-keepers, artists and volunteers.

This project is in it's preliminary phase and will rely heavily on funding and volunteers.

If you'd like to volunteer, please email

If you'd like to know more about the AACC, please explore our website.

Indigenous Artists and Vendors:
I am the founder and executive director of the Aboriginal Arts Collective of Canada. The AACC is an Incorporated Canadian Not-for-profit Organization (Corporation # 9469869). Pass The Feather as we are often referred to, is a registered business under which I, Dawn Setford work as an artist and feather keeper.
To continue our efforts in promoting Indigenous artists and protecting endangered Indigenous art form, this year's focus is on hosting an Indigenous Arts Conference in Ottawa (March 2019). I know that seems far away but in order to secure funding, the work has to be done now.
The objective of this conference is to ensure that knowledge of traditional Indigenous art forms are taught and shared across our communities and that we obtain the information we need to teach the next generation of Indigenous artists. Economic and social inclusion, reconciliation and equality are our main priorities.
• We all have the right to learn how to make the things that our ancestors made – regardless of financial status.•
• We all have a responsibility to teach our youth the history and spirituality that comes with creating hand made items. •
This conference intends to offer all or some the following free workshops to Indigenous adults:
drum making
birch bark biting
fish scale art
Mohawk fancy basketry
practical basketry
quill work
oral tradition
drum circles
traditional medicines
warrior bracelets
traditional dancing
smudge feathers/feather bundles
web design for small business
and how to wrap your head around grant applications.
 * ALL traditional Indigenous art forms are eligible, submit yours below.
Thank you to the hundreds of registrants!
Your response really communicates the importance of this event!
Please continue to send in your workshop and vendor forms (below). We are in the preliminary stages of planning and want to include as many Indigenous artists as we can!
Participation is free. You can change your mind at any time before December 31, 2018.
If you do not know Dawn Setford personally, please include your workshop experience and art form in your email. Add photos of your work. Add price per participant and make sure you categorize materials, artist fees and travel expenses.
We are ONLY looking for vendors and artists that create traditional hand made arts with products sourced on Turtle Island. Add photos of your work.
For this event:
You MUST be First Nations, Métis or Inuit to teach or sell your work. We are an inclusive organization and believe that Indigenous nations are diverse and valuable only collectively and cooperatively. You must self-identify and have learned your art form through your Indigenous spirituality, Elders, and/or family. 
Traditional teachings WILL be the focus of every workshop ensuring that people have Indigenous context to the product that they make or skill they learn.
For example:
• Drum workshop may include activity/information on the birthing of a drum
• Smudge Feathers will include bird medicines and spiritual concepts of smudging
• Painting will include teachings such as the medicine wheel colours, pictoral symbolism
• Dancing will include teachings behind movements and regalia (jingle dress, stomp dance)
"We all have the right to learn how to make the things that our ancestors made – regardless of financial status.
We all have a responsibility to teach our youth the history and spirituality that comes with creating hand made items."

Vendors can also submit the letter of participation via this web form below.

IAC Vendor Participation


Verification -so I know you're not spamming us 🙂

Workshop Facilitators can also submit the letter of participation below via this webform.

IAC Workshop Facilitator Participation


Verification - so I know you're not spamming us 🙂