The Melanin Exhibit – Participating Artists + Event Outline

The Melanin Exhibits

An art show celebrating over 600 thousand years of Black History. An event that invites collaboration by combining dance, poetry, music, and food while celebrating black culture

Hosted by

  • Creative Unicorns of Toronto
  • Gallery 1017



Creation Event

Artists will use one of 4 foundations (including Creation, Installation, Performance and or Exhibition) to animate an immersive event. Telling a fairy tale that takes advantage of social media, participating spaces and the event itself. The name of this tale is Mermaids and Unicorns

Participating artists


Ashante Blackwood(Artisticlifestyle) 

  • a 23-year-old fine artist based in Toronto. She specializes in portraits, concept art, and body paint. Her work captures the beauty and struggles of her culture and the process of her growing up insecure about things that identify her as a black woman. The bodies of works produced tell a story of her finding her purpose and finally learning to embrace as well love the features that make her the highest level of beauty from her ancestors.
  • Her goal is to one day open up her own gallery/space for Art, fashion, music, and events to showcase Toronto’s greatest under minded talent.


Moses Salihou

  • I'm a self-taught artist Originally from Cameroon and now living in Toronto, I'm inspired by my surroundings and everyday life, my style is more abstract impressionism and expressionism, I use as medium ( oil, acrylic, watercolor and other). My work could be found in private collections around the world ( Cameroon, Congo, Canada, France, Italy, Spain, New Zealand, USA, UK


Shanty Sweets

Alongside her bandmates, Shanty has performed at many events and venues all throughout the T-dot, such as the AGO (Art Gallery of Ontario), The Carlu for a show sponsored by Western Union, The Globus Theatre (Bobcaygeon), Atria (Oshawa) and the heart of the city, Nathan Phillips Square, just to name a few.

She takes pride in giving her audience her all and strives to connect, spread wisdom, inspiration, and create an uplifting feeling through her music.

Her influences run the gamut of excellence.  

Nina Simone, Jill Scott,  Alanis Morisette, Tracy Chapman, India Arie, Ella Fitzgerald, Sade, Erykah Badu, Leela James, Beres Hammond, Billie Holiday, Phyllis Dillon, Lauryn Hill and many more.

Social Media

Instagram: Shantysweetsmusic


Sarahjean Richardson

  • a Trinidadian-Canadian, a self-taught artist, living in Toronto for over 8 years. She creates representational art with pen, graphite, and marker. She has a love for drawing and has been working on her craft for over two years. She enjoys expressing herself through art, putting her own artistic style onto the work and continually developing her skill sets as an artist.


Shakkoi Hibbert

  • an all-around creative entrepreneur. As an author, dancer and poet she excels in overall expression. She studied sociology, media and African studies at the University of Toronto which gave her a unique understanding of academia and art.

  • During her years in university her passion and desire to know more about Afro-Caribbean histories erupted. She studied Afro-Caribbean culture outside of academia and eventually assisted 3 other women in creating an Afro-Caribbean dance group called C-Flava. C-Flava's main goal is to promote the unity between the African and the Caribbean communities. Through this dance group she has been able to meet the growing demands of cultural diversity by engaging and instructing various performances, workshops and group fitness classes around Canada.

  • Now as a self published author, of the book titled, The Poetic Transitions from a Hot Head to a Conscious Queen, Shakkoi continues to captivate individuals with her truth and grace. Filled with experiences to share, there's no question that Everyone needs some Koi in their life!!!
Social Media:

Jilao  Jewelrys

  • Handmade jewelry

Social Media

Instagram jilao.jewelrys. 


  • Monique Edwards is a self-taught artist. She studied Human Biology at the University of Toronto and is currently working as a Direct Support Professional and a realtor. Monique is passionate about documenting the African diaspora experience through visual art. Her favourite medium is oil paint on wood panel.  


Lovely Toronto

  • Unique handmade jewelry, brooches, earrings, necklaces


Follow her on Instagram


No Niji

  • We create unique alternative streetwear for people to take pride in expressing their own individuality. We create and produce one of each design giving wearers complete exclusivity!

Social media



  • Born in Toronto, Moorish American S.U.M.O-El Visual Bey is the son of a Trinidadian Mother & Jamaican Father. His Caribbean (Atlantis Islands) heritage is something he values and often reflects the islands' friendliness in his work.
    His interest in Graphic Arts, Multi-Media, Design & Print peaked when he graduated with honors from the International Academy of Design & Technology (in Toronto) in 1999.

  • Surprisingly S.U.M.O. El Visual Bey also known as Andrew-Wesley Fullerton started Instructing (Teaching) at 21 years old, at the International Academy of Design & Technology. During his tenure as an Art Director at ADvocacy Advertising Inc.
    After leaving FedEx Office as a Print Broker in 2012, S.U.M.O. attended Durham College to study Digital Video Production where he graduated with honors with the Class of 2015.

  • As an entrepreneur, S.U.M.O., has always enjoyed the advances in technology and it’s effects on Visual Arts & Culture. With over 20 years of experience in the Mixed Media Arts Industry, his focus is now on Health & Wellness, Film, and Print.

Social media



The Melanin Exhibit

Hosted by

  • Creative Unicorns of Toronto
  • Gallery 1017