Manitoulin Island artists cultivate creativity through new group

Individuals discuss what they want out of the new group focused on connecting individuals on the Manitoulin who are involved in creative or cultural activities.

MANITOULIN—A new group for Island artists, born out of the Manitoulin Cultural Symposium and Action Planning event held last year, held its second meeting recently, inspiring discussion and future collaboration among participants.

Organizer Kate Thompson, a M’Chigeeng writer and artist, explained that the group was started by several individuals who attended the symposium and wanted to continue the great energy and discussion through creative drop-in sessions around the Island.

“These informal drop-in sessions are open to any person involved in any form of creativity and culture, from any community on Manitoulin Island or Birch Island,” added Ms. Thompson.

Individuals are encouraged to bring something to work on and share with the group.

“We plan to hold these gatherings every month in different communities around the Island,” she continued. “We see lots of possibilities for them, which we can shape together as time goes along.”

The diverse group at the last meeting included writers, quilters, fiber artists, painters and actors.

Ms. Thompson shared with the group that she was pleased with the turnout and that “the word must be spreading about.”

She said that through meetings she hoped the group could address the ever-changing landscape of arts and culture on the Island through workshops, discussion, networking with other artists and learning new skills or techniques.

A unique element of the drop-in sessions is that they are being held in different artists’ homes across Manitoulin, giving individuals the chance to visit communities they don’t often get to.

The group established they would like to continue holding the drop-in sessions once a month on Sunday afternoons with an informal agenda.

For more information, or to be added to the group’s emailing list, contact Ms. Thompson at

Robin Burridge