About the speaker

Fiya Bruxa is an international multiple-award winning visual artist, actress, filmmaker, and writer. She is Co-Founder and Co-Director of the “Essencia Arts Collective”, who believe that art can be a tool for social change and community empowerment. Her artistic vision is a social one that questions and celebrates the beauty, dignity and perseverance of those who have, or continue to, overcome adversity and oppression. Fiya’s visual stories are expressed through canvas, mural, graffiti and installation. Her international community work includes engaging with youth, adults, women’s groups, marginalised communities, prison inmates, schools, first nations communities, socially engaged conferences, and educative initiatives. Most recently she wrote and directed “Ayelen” at this year’s Summerworks Theatre Festival, which went on the win awards and honorable mentions. She also co-wrote, and acted in the short film “COLD”, which won two “Best Picture” awards at international film festivals (OutFest and Women in Short Films - Dominican Republic). She also wrote and directed the documentary “The Wall That Speaks”, produced by the National Film Board of Canada. Her work has been produced in Canada, USA, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Venezuela, Dominican Republic, France, Sweden and Senegal.

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I am very grateful that I was raised hearing stories of survival. My parents left Chile from the dictatorship…and there was never once in that rhetoric we are victims, or there is hate or revenge. It was always we will survive, we have to believe in the better of human kind, we have to overcome, there is such a thing as peace, there is such a thing as dignity. — Fiya Bruxa

You can’t break the rules without acknowledging what the rules are, if you continue to follow all the rules, you will continue to make the same artwork that everybody creates. And so what is true to you? What is true to your own voice? — Fiya Bruxa

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