Meet the New Program Officer!
Kristen Atkins, Program Officer
As the newest addition to the artsnb team, I figured it appropriate to introduce myself. My name is Kristen Atkins and I have been a program officer with artsnb since May 1, 2015. With only one month under my belt, I have dove straight into the Arts Scholarship jury, attended a stakeholder’s meeting, prepared creation grant applications and assembled the creation juries alongside my coworker. I’m fortunate to have such a great co-worker, Joss Richer, who has been an incredible guide throughout this orientation! I have been out of my home province of New Brunswick the past few years and I’m looking forward to reorienting myself, broadening my network and learning from the representatives of culturally diverse art communities and organizations.
Being born in Moncton NB and having received my undergraduate degree in Fine Arts from Mount Allison University, I have been able to work in a visual arts and media arts art administrative capacity these past five years in Sackville (NB), Halifax (NS) and Toronto (ON). I left the Maritimes in 2013 to pursue a Master of Museum Studies degree from University of Toronto where I was able to concentrate my studies to topics in cultural policy, arts management and digital heritage. This program allowed me to contextualize my visual arts background within a broader landscape of cultural institutions such as galleries, libraries, archives and museums. My arts practice has been just as diverse, I’ve dabbled in painting, sculpture, installation, audio recording, stop motion animation and curating. I enjoy the outdoor trail systems Fredericton offers and I love cheesy puns.
Some of my most recent projects have been collaborations with cultural groups and institutions on curatorial work and outreach development. In the past year, I have partnered with SKETCH on a curatorial project that provided public space and dialogue for artwork made by street involved youth. I have also had the pleasure of curating and managing a digital outreach project for the Thomas Fisher Rare Books Library that highlighted the unusual holdings and talented human resources available to the public. In 2014, I was able to present this project at the Canadian Museums Association annual conference. These projects have enabled me to value artistic expression as culturally construct.
Due to my background mostly in visual arts, I am really looking forward to meeting, listening and learning from practicing artists from all artistic disciplines and stakeholders representative of a range of cultural institutions. This past month, I have learned a lot and I understand it is only the tip of the iceberg. I look forward to meeting with you and feel free to pop me an email or a call anytime! I think it is an exciting time for culture in our province and look forward to providing assistance and support along the way!