Emma Steen is a freelance curator and writer, as well as the Director of Membership for the Indigenous Curatorial Collective| Collectif des commissaires autochtones (ICCA). Emma is based out of Toronto, where she grew up in the downtown core, and understands her practice and relationship to community and land through an urban context. She received her BA at NSCAD University in Halifax, NS and then went on to complete a Masters of Art History at OCAD University in Toronto.
Emma’s area of interest lies in art and writing that explores intimacies, bodies, and gathering with anti-colonial intention. She is drawn to maximalism, frivolity and art that pushes audience comforts and plays with space. Her professional background also includes extensive work in community arts organizing, arts administration, and supporting methods of institutional accountability.
As a writer Emma has contributed to multiple arts & culture publications, journals and art galleries. She has written, published and edited zines and unconventional publications in her work at the ICCA and in her own practice. In 2020 she was awarded OCAD’s Outstanding Master’s Thesis/MRP Writing Awards for her paper, “Why the 90s Were so Sexy: locating sexuality, pleasure and desire in work produced by Indigenous women identified artists during the 1990s and early 2000s in Canada.”
Image Caption: Susan’s Blight, Locating Space for Self Care in Urban Centres, A Battlefield Medicinal Herb Living Green Under the Snow, installation image, 2021