Toronto — Creative agency and platform MARTKD, in partnership with eBay Canada, today announced the launch of a national Art on Sneaker Workshop + Competition in celebration of Pride Season, aimed at helping young artists develop industry-relevant knowledge, skills, and experience. The program represents the organizations’ shared commitment to providing access to education, as well as providing exposure opportunities for underserved and overlooked artists in the sneaker and art industries.
This program will feature 30 artists aged 19 to 24 from across Canada in a one-day intensive workshop where they will have the opportunity to learn from industry experts from Pensole Lewis College (PLC), the Historically Black College and University (HBCU) pipeline for career education and professional development in the design industry. Workshop topics include color application, storytelling and product presentation, with eBay Canada adding to the curriculum to teach artists sales and e-commerce principals.
Upon completion of the workshop, artists will have 24 hours to create their own shoe design. These final design submissions will be showcased nationally and voted on by the public to determine the ‘Fan Favorite’, while industry judges will select the top three finalists. Finalists’ sneaker designs will be on display at the eBay Canada booth at Pride Toronto Run in June and will be auctioned off on eBay.ca to raise money in support of the Pride and Remembrance Association.
This partnership comes at a time when the creative economy faces significant volatility from the COVID-19 crisis, particularly in underserved communities. According to the Center for Strategic and International Studies, the creative economy is one of the fastest-growing sectors in the world. This partnership with eBay Canada and MARTKD serves as a response to this trajectory and moment of economical and cultural recovery with an innovative model - one that engages learners in industry-aligned pathways. The program aims to create opportunities and access to knowledge and resources that too often aren’t made available to young artists.
“eBay has always been about connecting communities, so we’re thrilled to be partnering with MARTKD on this innovative program that brings together art, sneaker culture and up-and-coming talent,” says Shireen Edross, Head of Sneakers at eBay Canada.”
“Creating alternative pathways to education and career opportunities while aligning with people's passions and interests are critical within the art and culture space,” says Dion Walcott, Founder of MARTKD. “eBay is an active player in the sneaker community and is aligned with our goal to increase the profile of the Canadian Artists community. Together, we’re committed to making this a life-changing experience for learners entering the program, and we’re excited to unlock as many doors as we can into the exciting art industry.”
To learn more about the program, visit www.martkd.com/ebay
eBay Inc. (Nasdaq: EBAY) is a global commerce leader that connects millions of buyers and sellers in more than 190 markets around the world. We exist to enable economic opportunity for individuals, entrepreneurs, businesses and organizations of all sizes. Founded in 1995 in San Jose, California, eBay is one of the world’s largest and most vibrant marketplaces for discovering great value and unique selection. In 2021, eBay enabled over $87 billion of gross merchandise volume. For more information about the company and its global portfolio of online brands, visit www.ebayinc.com.
MARTKD is a platform and creative agency that uses “Art” as a community engagement tool to connect, empower and provide accessible programs for communities to showcase their creative and artistic talents. MARTKD’s mission is to celebrate and help overlooked and underserved talent by curating educational, art, and cultural programming that provides access to career opportunities. Since MARTKD’s inception in 2013, the brand has created programs and partnerships internationally with the mission of providing access and awareness to artists to showcase their talent. What started as a passion for sneakers has grown to become a community for artists, from all walks of life, to get exposure, build networks and access careers opportunities. For more information, visit MARTKD at Martk’d – Celebrate Artist (martkd.com).