Beginning 2.0 Disability Arts Conference

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Graphic to promote Beginning 2.0 A National Conversation, May 6 - 8, 2024, Canmore

Beginning 2.0 Disability Arts Conference

Dates: May 6, 7 & 8, 2024
Location: ArtsPlace (950 8 Ave. Canmore, AB)
Registration Fees: $150 for artists living with a disability or support workers attending with an artist, $350 for arts administrators or disability sector professionals

BEGINNING is a disability arts conference started in 2022 to ignite conversations about how we can collectively act to better support and showcase the remarkable creativity of artists with disabilities. Now in its second year, we invite arts leaders and innovators from across Canada to convene in Canmore, Alberta for two days of learning and connecting with others in the Canadian disability arts ecosystem. Conference participants will gain actionable insights that will positively impact their understanding of how we can work together to contribute to a more inclusive and accessible arts and culture sector in Canada.

Below are some additional details about the conference and what we have planned. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to

Registration is now open, please visit our website for registration info at

What’s included?

  • Full conference access (opening reception, all panel discussions, creative activities, and special presentations)
  • 2 nights of accommodation (May 6 and 7, 2024) at North Winds Hotel, Canmore
  • Breakfast and lunch on May 7 and 8, 2024

Conference Highlights

  • Curator’s tour with Michelle “Magic” Bennie. Michelle “Magic” Bennie (born 1979) is a Canadian artist raised in Calgary, Alberta attending the National access Arts Centre since 2017.
Special presentation

Animal Sculpting Performance & Storytelling with Ben Lachapelle

Celebrated author-illustrator Benjamin Lachapelle presents a special multidisciplinary performance that incorporates his published works, storytelling games, and improvised creativity. Participants will also have the chance to take home a personalized animal sculpture created by Ben!

Special presentation

Workshop with Frances Lady Francesca

This workshop is designed for all to experience performance and movement in a supportive and inclusive atmosphere. Join Lady Francesca of Drag Syndrome to learn more about their creative process, performance style, and what inspired them to step into the spotlight.

Panel discussion

Building trust through storytelling with Dan Cardinal McCartney, Sikapinakii Low Horn and Sarah Garton Stanley

This panel will explore the use of storytelling in sharing perspectives and expanding connections in the disability arts community. Topics include positioning artists with disabilities as experts in their field and adaptable approaches to storytelling.

Panel discussion

Structures of Care with Jesse Birch, Eve M, Johnson and Alan Shain

This panel is a chance to listen as three perspectives from different levels of art practice share their learning journey in relation to care within art spaces.

Panel discussion

Being in the Spotlight discussion with Taylor Poitras, Laurel Lawson and Paul Brain

This candid conversation will explore the challenges and triumphs of navigating increasing visibility as an artist. Gain insights into the intersection of creativity, visibility, and disability, as our panelists shed light on their experiences and perspectives.

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