Announcing Kordeena Clayton as the VANS in Residence artist at The Black Loyalist Heritage Centre, Birchtown May 2022

Visual Arts Nova Scotia, The Black Loyalist Heritage Centre, The Birch Town Retreat, She Nubian Liberation

In partnership with The Black Loyalist Heritage Centre, and the BirchTown Retreat, VANS is so pleased to welcome Kordeena Clayton as the newest VANS in Residence Artist. Kordeena will be in residence from May 2 - 28, 2022, at The Black Loyalist Heritage Centre in BirchTown (Shelburne, NS). While working at the BLHC, she’ll be staying very nearby, at the BirchTown Retreat.

Kordeena Clayton is the owner of She Nubian Liberation Art & Apparel, founder of Takin’ BLK Business Initiative Co-operative, co-founder of the Takin’ BLK Gottingen and Markets. A 7th generation descendant of the first African migrants to ever occupy Nova Scotia, a proud African Nova Scotian Queer self-taught Multidisciplinary artist of six years, who Focuses on the importance of representation of Black and Brown people; Inclusivity and self-embracement thorough a variety of mediums where experimental and abstract meet representation. Known for Unapologetically Black and Unapologetically Queer Apparel, photography, graphic and clothing design, film making and painting.

During the residency, Kordeena will be engaged in creating new work, sharing work through public engagement with students and others, and in ongoing research as part of her own practice. (Watch for details on ways you can connect in person and online in the weeks to come!)

Visual Arts Nova Scotia (VANS) advances the visual arts in the province through leadership, education and communication. A provincial artist-run organization VANS incorporated in 1976. Its role is broad in scope. We foster excellence, skills development and lifelong learning in the arts, and we strive to make connections in the broader community to develop awareness and appreciation of art.

The Black Loyalist Heritage Society is a dynamic charitable organization committed to discovering, interpreting, safeguarding, and promoting the history and heritage of the Black Loyalists. For over thirty years, the society has worked to ensure the chronicles and contributions of the Black Loyalists takes its place with other communities that shape Canada’s cultural mosaic. In 2015, their work culminated in the creation of the Black Loyalist Heritage Centre, a museum in the heart of BirchTown – once the largest free Black settlement in North America. Since the opening, more than 40 thousand people have visited to learn about the rich history of the Black Loyalists.

The BirchTown Retreat is a space for resting, relaxation, resistance and organizing open exclusively to BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Colour) organizations/teams/families/individuals. We prioritize rest and retreat for those with intersectional identities. Located in BirchTown, Mi’kma’ki, the property includes almost 8 acres of forest, waterfront, and trails; multiple homes in excellent condition; an old stone wall and foundation likely belonging to original Black settlers of the area.