Crafting the City: Consciousness, Craft and Consumption

Date: February 10, 2016
Time: 6:30 pm

Textile Museum of Canada
55 Centre Avenue, Toronto
Purchase Online

Local practitioners and innovators in urban agriculture, sustainable fashion, alternative housing and local food craft will engage in a critical dialogue about how globalization, sustainability and notions of authenticity shape personal and collective codes of craft production and consumption.

Participants include: Scott MacIvor, Post Doctoral Researcher at University of Toronto Scarborough, Helena Grdadolnik, associate director of WORKSHOP architecture and Peggy Sue Deaven-Smiltnieks, creative director of the Peggy Sue Collection. Moderated by Janna Levitt of LGA Architectural Partners.

Scott MacIvor is a post doctoral researcher at the University of Toronto Scarborough in the Department of Biological Sciences, and a researcher at GRITlab and lecturer in the Daniels Faculty. His research interests are focused on applied ecology and biodiversity in landscape design and urban planning.

Helena Grdadolnik is a Director of Workshop Architecture, recipients of the 2013 OAA Best Emerging Practice Award. Helena has a Masters in Architecture as well as expertise in urban design, cultural policy, public art and community engagement. Helena is on the Active Neighbourhoods Canada Steering Committee and the Creative City Network of Canada’s Public Art Network Advisory Group. Helena developed one of the major projects for the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad and initiated the Green Line linear park project which received a 2013 Toronto Urban Design Award of Merit and a TRCA Living Green Award in 2015. She has taught architecture and design at Emily Carr University and the University of British Columbia and is the co-author of two books: Towards an Ethical Architecture and The Contemporary Canadian Metropolis.

Peggy Sue Deaven-Smiltnieks graduated with a B.F.A. from the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD). She founded Peggy Sue Collection Inc. with the mission of taking steps towards revitalizing the North American Farm and Fiber Industry. She works directly with farmers, start-up mills and artisans to design sustainable clothing that celebrates their skills.

She has spoken at both New York University [NYU] and the Rhode Island School of Design [RISD] on sustainable sourcing. She is passionate about creating a product that tells a story and uses natural North American materials to their fullest extent; by growing and educating a conscious consumer and dedicated fiber industry.

Having worked with many luxury brands and houses: Roksanda Illincic (London), Bruno Duluc (Los Angeles), SAKS Fifth Avenue 611 (New York City), Trinity Repertory Theater Company (Providence), Peggy Sue has come to believe that true luxury not only lies in the quality construction of her garments, but in the heritage of her fabrics and fibers that can be traced back to the individual farm that raised them, the mill that spun them, the artisan that made them.

In a time where a garment's maker and its fiber source are anonymous, Peggy Sue seeks to affect change in the industry by producing a collection that honors the Farmer, the Maker and the Creator. For without their time-honored skills, knowledge and hard work there would be no fiber, no fabric, no fashion.

Janna Levitt (Principal LGA Architectual Partners, B.A., B. Arch., OAA,  FRAIC)  has a background in the visual arts which continues to distinguished her architectural career and is known in the office for her curiosity and commitment.  She seeks opportunities to integrate art into the firms projects and to collaborate with artists on installation based work. Her current projects include the new School of Architecture of the North in Sudbury for Laurentian University; the next iteration of the Mobile Food Market for FoodShare and a new large scale shipping container market in Toronto.


Conscious Consumption is presented with the support of TD Friends of the Environment as well as the K.M. Hunter Charitable Foundation.