We are ReDefine Arts
We believe that art is a necessary tool for world-building and (re)imagination.
ReDefine Arts Manifesto
ReDefine Arts (established in 2005 as Red Dress Productions) creates and presents interdisciplinary and community grounded performance, installations and public artworks that advance disability justice, collaborative processes, and artistic innovation.
Alongside its collaborators, community members and partners, ReDefine Arts is re-defining what it means to be an artist. ReDefine Arts views the artist as a creator and visionary, and also: co-creator, listener, connector of ideas, guide, and choreographer. While there is space for this definition to grow in tandem with our work, core to this understanding is that the artist’s role is to facilitate community-centred practices that remain accountable to the artistry, the stories, and the people telling them.
We embrace multitudes: we are multidisciplinary, multi-access, multi-sensory, and multi-modal.
We embrace our interconnectedness: we are interdisciplinary, interdependent, and interwoven in our stories.
Our work is guided by principles of collective liberation. Our ways of thinking and working consider needs and experiences beyond our own.
We believe in the power of art. We see art as an expansive way to express and communicate; we see art as necessary and reflexive.
We believe that our practice is strengthened by our relational ways of art making. Radical reciprocity and mutual care are central to our relationships.
We see art as a necessary tool for world-building and (re)imagination; as a way of navigating complexities and creating knowledge.
We strive for justice in all that we do. We hold and nourish our relations with care. We uphold the inherent value of all persons.
We continue to define and redefine what it means to be an artist through our work and relationships.
“ReDefine Arts creates unimaginably beautiful and complex pieces that weave together decades of history, ancestral memories and sparks of revolution and justice.” Syrus Marcus Ware, Curator, Homage, 2013, Juried commission, Church Street Murals Project
Founding Artistic Co-Director
Anna Camilleri has been working with performance, image, and text for over 25 years. An interdisciplinary theatre artist and designer, her tactile and sculptural works are primarily expressed through 20+ public artworks, as well as installations and exhibitions. Her book works have been recognized with distinctions from the LAMBDA Literary Foundation, the Association of Independent Publishers, and the American Library of Congress.
Tristan R. Whiston
Founding Artistic Co-Director
Tristan is a director, dramaturge, and community artist. He has written and directed five audio documentaries for CBC, including Middle C, which won the 2007 Premios Ondas Award for International Radio. He has directed Gender Play, trace, and recently, was dramaturge on the dance-theatre production Dancing With the Universe by Vivian Chong and Kathleen Rea that premiered at the Harbourfront Centre’s CoMotion: International Festival of Disability Arts. Tristan’s film pINCO Triangle was honoured with three 2018 Queer North Awards, including Best Canadian Film.
Wy Joung Kou
Associate Artistic Director
Wy Joung Kou is an interdisciplinary artist based in Treaty 13 Territory, Toronto. Their body of work spans mosaic, video, sound, movement, performance, poetry, and installation. Grounded in a disability justice framework centering accessibility, relationship and interdependence, their artistic practice intertwines the digital and the analog; the public and the personal; the sensory-based and the story-based. Kou has been a performing & teaching member of Raging Asian Womxn Taiko Drummers since 2019. They are the founder of the Sick & Disabled Queer Zine Fair (2018-2019), an Intergenerational LGBT Artist Residency alum, and in 2018 they were the inaugural winner of the JRG Grant for Artist with Disabilities.
Program & Access Coordinator
Megan Wilk is a queer, second generation settler with lived experiences of disability, residing, with gratitude, in Tkarón:to, Treaty 13 territory. Their professional experience working with Indigenous, racialized, 2SLGBTQ+, d/Deaf, blind, neurodiverse, and other disability artists and arts organizations has furthered their dedication to learning and unlearning, disability advocacy, building and sustaining relationships, and practices of care and interdependence.
With respect and gratitude, thank you to all project contributors, community members, and partner organizations. These relationships – past, present and future – strengthen, support, and make up a large and crucial part of RDA’s artistic and community-based activities. Thank you to the Toronto Arts Council and Ontario Arts Council for their ongoing operational support, without which our work would not be possible.
ReDefine Arts acknowledges that we are situated primarily in Toronto, the traditional territory of many nations including the Anishnabeg, the Haudenosaunee and the Wendat peoples, and the treaty lands of the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation (Treaty 13) and multiple Mississaugas and Chippewa bands (Williams Treaties). Many of our rural projects also take place on unceded traditional Omàmìwininì (Algonquin) territory. We acknowledge our shared obligation to respect, honour, and sustain these lands and the natural resources within it.