Season Six, Episode Four – Jody Lerat and Future Artistic Minds

Teacher and artist Jody Lerat and a group of her high school students started the Future Artistic Minds collective in 2019 as a safe space to create art in Saskatoon. Four years later, the collective is thriving as space where young artists in Saskatoon are finding their voices and collaborating with each other. YXE Underground host Eric Anderson visits the FAM collective and speaks with Jody Lerat about why mentoring young artists is such an important part of her life.

 

Teacher and artist Jody Lerat and a group of her high school students started the Future Artistic Minds collective in 2019 as a safe space to create art in Saskatoon. Four years later, the collective is thriving as space where young artists in Saskatoon are finding their voices and collaborating with each other. YXE Underground host Eric Anderson visits the FAM collective and speaks with Jody Lerat about why mentoring young artists is such an important part of her life.

Teacher and artist Jody Lerat and a group of her high school students started the Future Artistic Minds collective in 2019 as a safe space to create art in Saskatoon. Four years later, the collective is thriving as space where young artists in Saskatoon are finding their voices and collaborating with each other. YXE Underground host Eric Anderson visits the FAM collective and speaks with Jody Lerat about why mentoring young artists is such an important part of her life.

Finding your voice as a young artist can be challenging, especially if you can’t find the right space to express yourself creatively. Luckily for young people in Saskatoon, Jody Lerat and her team of students have created a safe and inviting space where young artists are free and encouraged to discover their voice. It’s called Future Artistic Minds and you are about to visit this collective here on YXE Underground.

I was able to spend a Tuesday night in late November at the Core Neighbourhood Youth Co-op in Saskatoon’s Riversdale neighbourhood. The building is broken up into several different spaces. There’s a recording studio down the hall from the kitchen, a silk screening press in the basement, and in the kitchin and dining room area, a group of high school and early 20 something artists are sitting around a long, wide table making art out of felt. 

All of this falls under the umbrella of the Future Artistic Minds collective, also known as FAM. This evening is a drop-in session meaning people can come in and create alongside other artists. 

This is where Jody Lerat spends a lot of her free time. She teaches art at Mount Royal Collegiate here in Saskatoon and is an artist herself. She knows everyone in the room and whenever she enters a different space in the building, young artists light up and say, “hi Jody!” 

It’s clear after five minutes that everyone here looks up to Jody.

There’s a lot happening at FAM and it’s all under the caring and encouraging eye of Jody Lerat. For almost two years, I’ve been trying to get Jody on the podcast as I think she’s a wonderful leader in our community who deserves to be celebrated, so I am excited to feature her and the collective on the podcast. 

Jody is from Cowessess First Nation in Treaty 4 territory but grew up in Saskatoon for most of her life. She talks openly in our conversation about the joy she experiences when she sees young artists collaborating and why encouraging today’s youth to pursue careers in the arts is so important. She also talks about the deeply personal role art has played in her life and why it fuels her passion to be the best art teacher she can be.

I also want to give a big thanks to FAM member Sofiya Zhukova who stepped up at the last minute when I couldn’t find a photographer for this episode and totally rocked it! Sofiya took incredible photos and was so much fun to work with. She is just starting her own photography and graphic design career and let me tell you, she is good! Thanks so much for all of your help, Sofiya.

Please feel free to give the podcast a 5-star review and tell your friends if you like what you hear. Doing both really does help the podcast reach more listeners so thank you!

I hope you have a safe and wonderful holiday season and can’t wait to talk with you in 2024.

Cheers…Eric 

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