Artist and activist Kinnie Starr headlines Kitty Lundy Memorial Lecture

Feed The Fire

The 2018 Kitty Lundy Memorial Lecture, titled “Our Divide Is Inside Us,” features artist and activist Kinnie Starr to speak with and perform for the York University community.

All are welcome to this Faculty of Liberal Arts and Professional Studies signature event. The performance and lecture will take place on Tuesday, Oct. 23 in York University’s Sandra Faire and Ivan Fecan Theatre. Doors open at 4:30 p.m. and a reception with refreshments will follow. RSVP here.

Starr was born and raised in Calgary, university educated in Ontario and she calls Sechelt, B.C., home. Her career as a visual artist, musician, published author and spoken-word artist has taken her around the world – across North America, Europe and Asia. Her activism began before her career in music as a visual artist, and her current visual work touches on her areas of interest in race, home, family and humanity. Her lecture will include a musical performance and readings from her book How I Learned to Run (2008), as well as excerpts from a talk on kindness from her forthcoming book called Radiant Voices.

Starr’s upcoming 2018 album, Feed the Fire, comes out of much reflection done in the aftermath of a taxicab collision that resulted in a brain injury. Her road to recovery deepened her interest in the nature of communication in an era when immediacy is king and anxiety disorders rise alongside extroversion and urgent digital chatter. Feed the Fire is a critical look at where we are in our relationships to the screen, to our faiths and to each other. The album is about hope and despair in perilous times and reconnecting with our truest selves.

Most recently, Starr collaborated with director Stephanie Clattenburg on the 2016 documentary Play Your Gender, which explores the realities of being a woman in the music industry, a business in which fewer than five per cent of producers are women even though many of the most bankable stars are female.

Kinnie Starr. Image from her Feed the Fire CD. Courtesy of the artist

Starr has also worked in youth arts activism and mentorship. She teaches “Auntie Kinnie’s Rap Skool,” a playful, self-esteem boosting, literary-focused, rhythm-based and uplifting program aimed towards helping LGBT and First Nations youth – and all kids – find their voice and power.

The annual Kitty Lundy Memorial Lecture honours the late Kitty Lundy, an admired educator of sociology who was associated with York University’s former Atkinson Faculty of Liberal Arts and Professional Studies from 1986-89. Lundy was concerned with the fields of education, occupation and women’s studies, and cared deeply about students pursuing their studies. To honour her, the memorial lecture seeks out an individual whose scholarship and creativity address principles to which Kitty Lundy exhibited commitment: engaged learning, equity and social justice, interdisciplinary exchange, and the dissemination and exchange of ideas and knowledge with communities residing within and outside of York University.

For more information and to register, visit