In partnership with Workman Arts, AROBA: A Room of Black Artists, is the first symposium of its kind in Canada, dedicated to supporting the mental health of Black artists.

Happening on Black Mental Health Day (March 1st), this full-day event will include a variety of discussions around anxiety and depression experiences that Black Artists face as they navigate their lives and careers in the arts sector as a whole. Experts will offer advice from lived experience, and also share resources available to the community. 

There are numerous reasons why this event is needed, or as organizers share, “Black Artists have and continue to play an essential role as leaders in building communities and producing hallmarks of cultural expressions and yet continue to face a plethora of blatant to insidious forms of anti-Black racism and mental health discrimination.” 

A series of peer-based trauma-informed discussions with Black artists explore critical paths to healthier realities, not limited to:

  • Black artists moving beyond trauma within their art practice and life
  • Discussion about the arts increasing public awareness of anti-Black racism, anxiety and depression.
  • Navigating the ways that microassaults, microaggressions, and microinvalidations lead to anxiety, depression, and impacts work
  • Artists accessing mental health counselling and education to support their wellbeing and creative output
  • Confronting anti-Black racism and its impact on mental wellness within Black communities
  • Black artists’ creation for their community, that reduces the stigmatization of mental illness.

This symposium for Black Artists and Arts Workers is also open to the wider Black community. Non-Black Artists and members of the wider community are welcome to attend but are reminded to be mindful, respectful of the conversations, and the privilege of being able to witness the experiences openly shared by participants.

AROBA is a PWYC event. Make sure to register in advance.