Skip to main content

Heather Haynes has a long history of producing innovative, politically charged projects in the visual arts, film/ documentary, performance art, and theater. Her focus is to present works that deal with social justice and cultural issues in order to engage and inspire meaningful dialogues with audiences.

Haynes is a Senior International Programmer for HotDocs Canadian International Documentary Film Festival, with a special focus on Mexican and Latin American film. She is also an International Programmer for imagineNATIVE Film + Media Festival, the world’s largest presenter of indigenous screen content. She serves on the advisory committee for EstDocs Film Festival, the largest Estonian cultural event outside of Estonia. Haynes has produced three award-winning feature documentaries: Wetback: The Undocumented Documentary, Super Amigos, and City Idol, which screened internationally. She was the 2014 Guest Curator for aluCine Latin Film + Media Arts Festival, where she presented Blood Relations, a program focusing on Mexican short documentary and narrative works. She has also served on numerous national and international film and artistic juries.

Haynes was the founder and former Executive/Programming Director of Toronto Free Gallery, a nonprofit art space dedicated to works dealing with contemporary social, cultural, and urban issues. She recently founded Culture Storm, an organization that produces artists in film, performance, visual arts, and theater whose work plays an important role in fostering social, political, community-focused engagement and change. She has produced internationally renowned artists such as James Luna and Guillermo Gómez-Peña, and she has co-produced events honoring the work of Tomson Highway. Recently, too, she co-produced (along with Setsune Fashion Incubator Indian Giver) a visual artist exhibition of commissioned works addressing issues of cultural appropriation through fashion, textiles, and wearable art. She is currently in the development phase of a documentary in collaboration with new media artist Dana Claxton and James Luna; co-producing Toronto’s first Indigenous Fashion Week; and working with famed actress Tantoo Cardinal to develop her first-ever one-woman new media production.