Left of Centre - Nia Centre for the Arts

Left of Centre

Left of Centre is an artist incubation project which combines professional development, creative consulting, critical feedback, and seed funding to support the careers of emerging Black artists living within Toronto or the GTA.

With multiple streams, Left of Centre allows artists to locate themselves within the incubator, making use of elements that are best suited towards their needs – whether that be funding, consulting, critique, or inspiration.

Developed in collaboration with Black artists and advisors, across a wide range of disciplines, Left of Centre seeks to support emerging Black artists in navigating traditional and non-traditional art spaces and institutions, securing funding for their work, developing their artistic practices, and continuing to inspire our creative community.

Left of Centre offers the following programming streams & opportunities. Continue reading below to learn more about each offering:

Join the Left of Centre Community

How Can Left of Centre Support Me?

Consulting for Emerging Artists

Through our Creative Catalyst stream, a cohort of emerging artists will work directly with a group of 8 established artists and consultants who will provide feedback, guidance, and mentorship over the course of 7 months.

The Creative Catalyst stream is application-based, and best suited towards emerging artists who have made a commitment towards establishing their artistic careers, are currently working on new work or building on existing work, and looking to regularly engage an artistic consultant.

Left of Centre: Conversations

Wondering what the differences between artist statements and artist bios? Interested in learning how a studio visit – in person or virtual – can help you build deeper connections with your peers, curators and buyers? Or maybe you’re looking to better understand how flash assessments can support your creative writing career. In these series of videos, we explore ways that you can better understand and articulate who you are as an artist, and how to feel empowered to take the roles, space, and energy you deserve as a creative.

Featuring conversations with:

  • Liz Ikiriko
  • Sarah-Tai Black
  • Sara Elgamal & Imad Elsheikh
  • Kevin Reigh
  • Pacinthe Mattar
  • Fiona Raye Clarke
Discipline Specific Feedback and Critique

Whether you’re preparing to showcase and/or publish your work, respond to a call for submissions, or just looking for critical feedback on a new or existing piece or body of work, we know that feedback is essential to developing as an artist.

We provide discipline specific ‘Crit Nights‘, hosted by established artists working within each discipline.


Nia Centre for the Arts recognizes the ongoing support of the Left of Centre program by advisors Anique Jordan and Desmond M

Left of Centre is made possible through the support of:

Left of Centre is an incubator to help advance the careers of emerging Black artists.

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