Art in the Open

Outdoor festival returns for its 13th year—Aug 26

The annual March of the Crows at Art in the Open

Art in the Open (AITO), will transform Charlottetown into a gigantic art gallery for one day again this year. PEI’s annual outdoor art festival will take place August 26 from 4 pm to midnight and feature twenty-two art installations across the city’s downtown core. 

In its 13th year, AITO continues to engage local and visiting artists, encourage collaboration, and deliver compelling, thought-provoking and beautiful content that delights and provokes attendees. The annual March of the Crows is also set to return.

Art installation locations include the Confederation Centre Art Gallery, Charlottetown Library and Learning Centre, ‘old’ Charlottetown Library (entrance via Queen St.) at Confederation Centre of the Arts, Guild Theatre and Art Gallery, 141 Kent Street and Beaconsfield Heritage House.

The 2023 curatorial team is Roxanne Fernandes, Janna Graham, Andrew Maize and Amy Siegel. 

Fernandes is an arts administrator and budding programmer working in Toronto/Tkaronto. She writes, researches, thinks and creates through a lens that is experimental, archival, photographic and pedagogical. She is interested in photography, video and sound—memory, poetry and migration.

Coordinating Curator Janna Graham is an Epekwitk-based media artist and radio producer. In 2008, she co-founded White Rabbit Open Air Arts, a landscape-installation festival in rural Nova Scotia. For the past seven years, she’s been artistic director at Snowking’s Winter Festival in a castle made of snow and ice on Great Slave Lake in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories. 

Andrew Maize is an artist whose playful and meandering research-based practice draws upon language, relationships and technology as catalysts for conversation. As an arts educator and organizer, he has been involved in collaborative projects such as White Rabbit Arts, the Circus of the Normal and the Lunenburg School of the Arts.

Siegel is a multimedia artist, educator, and organizer of artistic projects currently living and working in Sackville, NB, unceded Mi’kmaw territory. She is interested in nonfiction film, and site-specific and interdisciplinary practices. From 2018-2023, Amy was Creative Director of the ReFrame Film Festival, a social justice documentary film festival in Nogojiwanong/Peterborough, Ontario.

Curated projects include works by Rita McKeough (AB), Marlene Creates (NFLD), Shary Boyle (NB), Doug Dumais (PEI), Lisa Hirmer (ON), Brendan George Ko (ON), Melissa Marr & Karen Stentaford (NS & NB), Kirstie McCallum (PEI), Julie Pasila (ON), Melissa Peter-Paul (PEI), Darren Rigo (ON), Nicole Rampersaud (NB), Hrista Stefanova (NS), Winnie Truong (On), Michael Waterman (ON), and Patricia Bourque (PEI). 

Art in the Open will also feature community installations by the Charlottetown Library and Learning Centre, the PEI Rape & Sexual Assault Centre, the PEI Crafts Council, the PEI Potters Studio Coop, Steam PEI and Nine Yards Studio.

Juried projects include works by Alexander + Crossman (NS), Millefiore Clarkes (PEI), Sarah Dart (PEI), Joanna Howlett (PEI), Helenia Lalande & Ben Gross (PEI), Alana Morouney (NB) and Joliz Deal Peña (QC). 

The AITO Board has hired well-known event manager and musician, Mark Carr-Rollitt, as Executive Director to manage the festival on a year-round basis. “I am excited to be working with this passionate team on a festival I have enjoyed for years,” says Carr-Rollitt. “It’s going to be an amazing day, so plan ahead and make sure you’re in Charlottetown at the end of August. I have family coming from California for it, and to walk in the [March of the Crows]!”