Press Release: Introducing VIBE Arts’ RBC Desire Lines: Women’s Work II Artists

November 17, 2022… VIBE Arts is pleased to introduce the second cohort of RBC Desire Lines: Women’s Work Artists. 

You can see their work at The Gallery at Mason Studio until November 30, 2022. Learn more about this exhibition here. These pieces will also be displayed in TTC stations across the city in early 2023. Stay tuned to find out where. 

RBC Desire Lines: Women’s Work was born out of the disproportionate effect the COVID-19 pandemic has had on women and the BIPOC population. VIBE identified an urgent need to support and platform BIPOC female-identifying artists. Desire Lines: Women’s Work was specifically designed to provide young female artists the opportunity to grow their careers in the arts through networking, mentorship, professional development and exhibition opportunities.

RBC Desire Lines began in 2019 as a two-year art-in-mentorship program awarding young, emerging artists the opportunity to exhibit their work in subway stations across Toronto after attending a wide offering of professional development workshops. The program is now wrapping up its fourth cohort thanks to funding from RBC Foundation.


Get to know the RBC Desire Lines: Women’s Work Artists:

Chawntay Barrett: “My ultimate goal is to create more of the art that I want to see in the world. I want to see more art with subject matter that resonates with my community. I hope that having my artwork in such a public space provides access to people who identify with the subject matter of my work to feel seen and empowered.

Dominic Justina: A creative originally from Jamaica, Dominic was born into a musical family where reggae music put bread on the table. She dabbles in poetry and digital media, currently producing the Life on Hifi podcast inspiring others to create. ”Years ago when I would take the TTC religiously, I’d stare at panels that resonated with me in the station and these would evoke emotions to help calm me, bring me joy or make me think as I waited for my train. Now I will be the artist that can influence commuters in this way and that feels incredible.”

Jade Kent-Brewster: Jade Kent-Brewster is a self-taught mixed media artist and dancer based in Toronto, Ontario. As an artist she works hard to produce pieces that speak to who she is as a creative and are impactful to the viewer. “Being able to have the opportunity to exhibit my work at a large scale makes me feel proud because I am able to share my craft and inspire others.”

jadyn machiinegunfunkk hardie-bardy: A self-published poet and beadworker exploring culture, land, adversity faced while navigating colonial institutions and beating those barriers. “It’s an opportunity that I’m super honoured to have and I’m excited to see what doors it will open if any.”

Janine Ilya: J. Ilya’s practice centers around capturing the concept of intimacy and vulnerability, in relation to place, others and oneself. “This experience has taught me a lot about my engagement to public transport and the importance of honouring the hundreds of body’s that pass me by on a daily basis. I feel a deep honour to be a small part of these people’s commute and to be able to engage with them through my work.” 

Jasmine Vanstone: Jamaican-Canadian Multi-Disciplinary Artist & Arts Administrator. “I’m grateful to exhibit my art in the TTC because this opportunity allows me to take up space both literally and figuratively!“

Kanisha Dabreo: A Caribbean-Canadian multidisciplinary artist, digital designer, and muralist. “I am extremely grateful for this opportunity! I never expected my love of the arts would lead to so many unforgettable interactions and experiences.”

Mennen:Conceptualizing work around the human figure or condition and the desire to make social commentary are my drive. My work is explorative, subjective and thought-provocative, revealing playful intent. It’s such a privilege that I didn’t think I’d be getting so early on in this journey. To have my work/message put in a place of that nature is pretty special!” 

Rare: A Toronto creative who is passionate about community work, poetry, photography and storytelling. “I can say I finally feel that I could represent for my inner child and feel complete as a person. This is a key in my purpose, my future and makes my heart feel fulfilled.” 

Shelly Grace: Shelly Grace uses her art for community building and healing, focusing on the experiences of women and the Black community. “Having my work exhibited in the TTC is a dream. Having that many people view my work is both wonderful and terrifying.”

Want to look back at the previous Desire Lines cohorts? Visit the online gallery showcasing their work.


Desire Lines is made possible by RBC and presented in partnership with PATTISON Outdoor Advertising.

Press Release: VIBE Arts, in partnership with TO Live, presents NExT: The Future of Art Exhibition 3.0

“I felt a shift happen when I realized that I can utilize these resources to help me keep hustling towards my goals. My confidence is more so rooted in a plan now rather than wishful thinking. And that’s extremely powerful for me because I can take steps on my own journey to make things happen with the resources around me”

– NExT III Artist

March 8, 2022… VIBE Arts and TO Live present NExT: The Future of Art Exhibition 3.0, an online and in-person exhibition celebrating Black Futures, March 16 – 31, 2022. 

The Future of Art Exhibition 3.0 will run online and in the Gallery at the Meridian Arts Centre (5040 Yonge St, North York), in accordance with local COVID-19 health and safety guidelines. Join us for the exhibitions launch and artist talk Wednesday, March 16, 2022 at 6 PM. Please register in advance here. This event is free to attend. If you’re unable to make it, we will be holding a virtual artist talk on Zoom Thursday, March 24, 2022 at 6PM. Register here.  

NExT: The Future of Art Exhibition 3.0 is a celebration of the works by artists participating in VIBE Arts’ 2021-2022 Black Youth Mentorship Program. Short for Network and Explore Together, NExT was built on the vision to build, connect, and strengthen networks of Black artists throughout the GTA and to increase the visibility of Black Youth Artists in public Canadian exhibitions. This program supports the truth that Black perspectives are essential in shaping the future of the arts. 

“VIBE Arts creates invaluable opportunities for young Black artists, and when the exciting work of these talented 2021 NExT participants was first displayed in the windows of the St Lawrence Centre last year, TO Live was proud to play a part”, said Josephine Ridge, Vice President of Programming. “The success of that installation led to these plans to show the work in our Gallery and to provide further support to ensure that the stories, art and filmed performances of these passionate artists be experienced by many more people.”

NExT Artists have participated in a 9 month mentorship program which included 1-on-1 mentorship sessions with our roster of professional artists and creatives, attended professional development workshops and networking opportunities, as well as received funding to create new work that is now being exhibited to the general public.

2021-2022 NExT Artists:

Chawntay Barrett, Glowz, Jadyn “machiinegunfunkk” Hardie-Bardy, Janine Ilya, Jasmine Vanstone, Kanisha Dabreo, Mennen, Myles Isley, Prince, Shahaddah Jack, Tristan Sauer

2021-2022 NExT Mentors: 

Akua Delfish, Anique Jordan, Anthony Gebrehiwot, Britta B, Darkie, Darren Anthony, Desiree Mckenzie, Kofi Frempong, Nayo Sasaki-Picou, Rich Kidd, Yemina Salome

VIBE Arts’ NExT Program is made possible by TD Bank.  

NExT: The Future of Art Exhibition 3.0 is made possible with support from AIR MILES and Entro. 


 About VIBE Arts 

Established in 1995, VIBE Arts is a charity dedicated to providing arts education and professional artistic mentorship to the next generation of creatives. VIBE seeks to increase access and equity to the arts to encourage wellness, resilience and a sense of belonging.

VIBE values the significance of lived experiences, and NExT is one of many initiatives created to invest in this truth by creating and strengthening networks of Black artists, creating spaces and opportunities to help overcome barriers.

Stay in Touch! | @VIBEArtsTO


About TO Live

TO Live is one of Canada’s largest multi-arts organizations, operating three iconic venues: Meridian Hall, St. Lawrence Centre for the Arts, and Meridian Arts Centre. In addition, TO Live presents a full range of performing arts, theatrical, and concert events at these venues in both downtown and uptown Toronto. With these two hubs of creativity and content creation, TO Live has a unique place and perspective to activate creative spaces by inspiring local and international artists, connect audiences and to be the nexus for new ideas, elevate artistic potential, and be the catalyst for creative expression that is reflective of Toronto’s diversity. For more information, visit