Kelsie Young chosen as 2020 Cape Breton Centre for Craft & Design’s Artist in Residence

From: Parks Canada

September 17, 2020 Ingonish, Nova Scotia Parks Canada Agency

Parks Canada and Cape Breton Centre for Craft & Design have chosen Kelsie Young as the Artist in Residence in Cape Breton Highlands National Park this fall.

Kelsie is a Mi’kmaw artist who studied her ancestral arts of wooden flower and dream catcher making, and basket weaving with Mi’kmaq elders from Bear River and throughout Nova Scotia. With an undergraduate degree from Saint Mary’s University in Entrepreneurship and Classical History, Kelsie is also a certified vinyasa yoga and meditation teacher, spirit talker, energy worker and has been creating dream catcher artwork under her studio name Dream Webs since 2016.

Kelsie was featured as an emerging artist and Indigenous entrepreneur by Halifax Metro, the Halifax Seaport Farmers Market, and on various podcasts. Kelsie attends many local Ma’wiomis across Nova Scotia and has hosted several yoga, meditation, smudging and dream catcher workshops for community centres, schools and venues.

She will be spending six weeks in Cape Breton Highlands National Park, from September 14 to October 23, 2020, using the natural surroundings and setting as inspiration to focus on her art of making dream catchers.

In its fourth year, the Artist in Residence Program provides an opportunity for a professional artist to focus for a concentrated period on developing new projects or to work on existing projects in natural surroundings. Natural spaces such as Cape Breton Highlands National Park have always been sources of inspiration for many people and supporting the creation and enjoyment of art is one more way Parks Canada can encourage people to enjoy the outdoors and connect with nature.


“The Artist in Residence Program at Cape Breton Highlands National Park is an opportunity for an artist to immerse themselves in their art while surrounded by nature’s beauty. We welcome Kelsie Young as this year’s Artist in Residence. I’m sure she will find inspiration in the natural beauty of the landscape and the breathtaking fall colours of Cape Breton.”

Mr. Jaime Battiste,

Member of Parliament for Sydney-Victoria

“The Centre is excited to welcome Kelsie Young to Cape Breton. It is not every day that an artist has the opportunity to live and be inspired by the stunning natural landscapes of Cape Breton Highlands National Park. We are thrilled that this program continues to be a success and we look forward to continuing this partnership with Parks Canada.”

Lori Burke,

Executive Director, Cape Breton Centre for Craft & Design

“The Artist in Residence program at the Cape Breton Highlands National Park will leave an unforgettable and lasting impression on my artistic practice. Dream catchers are a form of traditional healing medicine and my artistic expression of the dream catcher is about celebrating and capturing the beauty, oddities, and complexities that can only be found in nature.

The first step of my creative process happens when I am grounded and connected with the land. This Residency will allow me to slow down and become fully immersed in the unforgettable landscapes of this national park and fully explore the East Coast of Canada.

I am extremely grateful to Parks Canada and The Cape Breton Centre for Craft & Design, for the independent time and space to focus on my artwork. This residency will also provide an amazing opportunity to showcase my artwork to new audiences on an international level.”

Kelsie Young,

Artist in Residence

Quick facts

  • Cape Breton Centre for Craft & Design, a non-profit charitable organization, is an integral and leading force in the educational, promotional and economic development of the craft sector on Cape Breton Island with a membership of over 300 individuals and organizations throughout the Island.

  • Parks Canada manages one of the finest and most extensive systems of natural and cultural heritage places in the world. National parks, historic sites, and marine conservation areas represent the very best that Canada has to offer and tell stories of who we are.

  • Parks Canada has offered an Artist in Residence Program at other locations throughout the country including Fortress of Louisbourg National Historic Site, Banff National Park, Gros Morne National Park and Terra Nova National Park, amongst others.

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