The Koffler’s Fall 2020 Books & Ideas season begins with online conversations with the writers of Penguin Teen Canada’s Pocket Change Collective, a series of small books with big ideas by today’s leading youth activists and artists.
This is What I Know About Art, arts writer and co-editor of Black Futures Kimberly Drew shows us that art and protest are inextricably linked. Drawing on her personal experience through art toward activism, Drew challenges us to create space for the change that we want to see in the world. In Imaginary Borders, Earth Guardians Youth Director and hip-hop artist Xiuhtezcatl Martinez shows us how his music feeds his environmental activism and vice versa. Martinez visualizes a future that allows us to direct our anger, fear, and passion toward creating change.Conversation moderated by storyteller and multidisciplinary artist, Whitney French. Click here to register. Kimberly Drew is a writer, curator, and activist. Drew received her B.A. from Smith College in Art History and African-American Studies. She first experienced the art world as an intern in the Director’s Office of The Studio Museum in Harlem. Her time there inspired her to start the Tumblr blog Black Contemporary Art, sparking her interest in social media. Drew’s writing has appeared in Vogue, Glamour, W, Teen Vogue, and Lenny Letter, and she has executed Instagram takeovers for Prada, The White House, and Instagram. Drew recently left her role as the Social Media Manager at The Met. Her upcoming book, Black Futures, which she is co-editing with Jenna Wortham, is due in December, 2020.
Xiuhtezcatl Martinez (first name pronounced “Shoe-Tez-Caht”) is a nineteen-year-old Indigenous climate activist, hip-hop artist, and powerful voice on the front lines of a global youth-led environmental movement. At the early age of six, Xiuhtezcatl began speaking around the world, from the United Nations Summit in Rio de Janeiro to addressing the UN General Assembly in New York. His work has been featured on major media platforms, such as PBS, National Geographic, Rolling Stone, The Guardian, Vogue, The Daily Show, Nickelodeon, Comedy Central, CNN, HBO, VICE, and more. Xiuhtezcatl is the author of We Rise and is also reaching his generation through hip-hop. He released his first EP, Broken, and his first album, Break Free, in 2018.
Whitney French is a storyteller and a multidisciplinary artist. She is the co-founder of Hush Harbour Press. She is also the editor of Black Writers Matter (University of Regina Press) and the creator of the nomadic workshop series Writing While Black. Presently she is working on her forthcoming science-fiction verse novel. Whitney lives in Toronto.
The Koffler is thrilled to present virtual conversations with all six Pocket Change Collective contributors: Adam Eli & Alok Vaid-Menon (September 29), Kimberly Drew & Xiuhtezcatl Martinez (October 6), and Amyra León & Hannah Testa (October 21).
The Pocket Change Collective series is presented with Penguin Random House Canada Young Readers.
Books & Ideas: Fall 2020 Series
Our year-round Books & Ideas series spotlights provocative writers, novelists and thinkers, celebrating literary excellence and fostering critical dialogue through compelling book launches, author talks and in-depth interviews. This fall, in conjunction with programming across the Koffler’s multidisciplinary art streams, Books & Ideas takes up themes of youth activism, food culture and politics, and environmentalism, presenting a series of virtual events on our online platform.Books & Ideas was launched with the generous support of Dorothy Shoichet & Family and the Estate of Joseph Koenig.Books & Ideas Media Partner: Toronto Star
Images at top:
This Is What I Know About Art by Kimberly Drew. Illustrated by Ashley Lukashevsky. | Imaginary Borders by Xiuhtezcatl Martinez. Illustrated by Ashley Lukashevsky.