It’s About Time: Dancing Black in Canada 1900 – 1970 and Now illuminates the largely undocumented dance history of Canada’s Black population before 1970, with responses from contemporary performing and visual artists reflecting on how the archival resonates in this moment, and in Alberta.

Curated by Seika Boye, PhD, this archival exhibition, which will be on view at the MAG from September 15 to December 5, exposes the representation of Blackness on Canadian stages, as well as audience and media reception of Black performance in Canada during this era. It’s About Time also explores legislation of leisure culture, dance lessons and the role of social dances at mid-century. Featured are individual dance artists such as Leonard Gibson, Ola Skanks, Ethel Bruneau, Joey Hollingsworth and Kathryn Brown.

This is the fourth presentation of the archival materials in It’s About Time. New to this iteration, Boye has invited contemporary performing and visual artists — either from or currently based in Alberta — to respond to the archive and consider what the history of Black people dancing in Canada reveals about our contemporary moment.

Featuring dance artists Michèle Moss and Ashley Colours Perez, visual artists Braxton Garneau and Preston Pavlis, author Cheryl Foggo, with graphic recording by Adriana Contreras.

Archival exhibition commissioned by Dance Canada Danse.

From the Mitchell Art Gallery