June 6, 2014
On Sunday, May 25, 2014 I had the incredible opportunity of hosting the BookThug table at the Toronto Indie Arts Market, Small Press and Literary Festival.
The Toronto Indie Arts Market is curated by Sheryl Kirby and Greg Clow. Together, they understood the need for independent artists to find a place to sell their creations. As the TIAM website explains: “Currently, Sheryl runs the micro-imprint Stained Pages Press, and Greg is the publisher of Canadian Beer News, where he also hosts a popular monthly dining series.”
Regarding the choice of artists to appear at the events Sheryl and Greg say: “Curating an event like this is often difficult. We spend our weekends visiting any and all craft fairs, small press fairs and similar events within Toronto to scout for cool stuff, so many of the vendors have been personally invited to submit an application because we’ve had a chance to see their wares in person and have liked what they’re doing.
Our aim is to include stuff with a slightly edgy, youthful, urban appeal that is still generally accessible. Our first event included comics, corsets and kimchi, and we always try to mix things up so there are some fun surprises. We want our customers to discover something new that hopefully pushes their boundaries slightly. This is not the place for doilies and sun-catchers.”
The Location for the TIAM is the iconic Gladstone Hotel. As Sheryl and Greg describe: “Every TIAM takes place at the Gladstone Hotel, 1214 Queen Street West. We’ve chosen this venue because they are very supportive of Toronto’s arts scene, but also because the venue is wheelchair/mobility device accessible, and has both an ATM and a cafe on site.”
On Sunday, May 25, the BookThug table was on the Second Floor Gallery of the Gladstone Hotel. We featured books from our spring collection as well as past publications. The Gladstone had an art exhibition also on the Second Floor Gallery, “40 Years of Hip Hop.”
We thought it was fantastic! Having our BookThug table directly under an incredible photo of Biggie Smalls certainly strengthened our street cred.
The Toronto Indie Arts Market – Small Press and Literary Festival was a great event. There’s talk of another Small Press and Literary Festival being hosted in December by TIAM; however, in the mean time you should check out the upcoming events.
And as always, pick up your BookThug books and be ready to represent.
The views expressed in this BookThug blog entry is held by the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of BookThug.
Kristen Smith received her Bachelors of Arts in English at Mount Allison University (Sackville, New Brunswick). In 2006, she was awarded the Graham Atlantic Writing Prize for her collection of poetry, Voices. Additionally, Kristen was selected as one of six poets internationally to participate in the Writing With Style program at the Banff Centre, Banff, AB (2012). In both her creative and her academic writing, Kristen explores themes of absence, nostalgia, and belonging. She currently studies at Ryerson University where she is completing a Master of Arts in Literatures of Modernity. Kristen lives in Toronto with her husband.