Alicia Reid

Youth Artist Spotlight: Alicia Reid

A fireside chat that spotlights artists involved with the Scarborough Made Project.

Scarborough Made launched “Resilience” in 2021 as a multifaceted art project covering documentary storytelling, creative mentorship programming for youth and a public art installation at the Cedarbrae Library branch within the Scarborough Guildwood neighbourhood. We connected with youth artist Alicia Reid from last year’s creative mentorship program to share some insights into why she creates and how her work intersects with Scarborough.

SN: Alicia, tell me about yourself?

AR: My name is Alicia Reid, and I am a Jamaican-Canadian photographer and aspiring filmmaker based in Toronto. My work is inspired by the Caribbean and Toronto culture as I love sharing moments that highlight people of colour. I’ve been doing photography for five years now as I’ve captured local events and international artists from Burna Boy, Jorja Smith, Wizkid, and Ari Lennox. I started to pursue photography for the purpose of highlighting Toronto, the people, its culture, environment, and many more. I wanted to make sure that there was a positive outlook being shown in the city, especially towards people in marginalized communities.

SN: How do you see the Scarborough community?

AR: I see the Scarborough community as family, very loving and welcoming. I love being able to go to any neighbourhood and see so much diversity and unity. Everyone has so many differences but at the same time we’re more alike than we ever imagined and being from Scarborough has brought that middle ground between all of us through our day-to-day experiences that we all relate to; commuting, eating, and just everyday creating.

SN: What about Scarborough Made excites you?

AR: Scarborough Made excites me because I love seeing people in the community do great things and have their stories being told. It’s so important to give people their flowers while they’re still here.

SN: What impact do you hope to make through Scarborough Made?

AR: The impact I hope to make through this project is to reassure people that anything is possible, especially coming from places that not many people believed in once upon a time.

SN: What do you think of when you hear “Resilience” in connection to Scarborough?

AR: When it comes to resilience, Scarborough is the true definition of it. The people in the community are very bold and unapologetically themselves, which I love and being resilient to me is being authentic without fear of judgement and being able to speak your mind, no matter what someone else has to say or think.

SN: Tell me about the piece you worked on for the Scarborough Made “Resilience” installation?

AR: The piece I will work on for the installation is the story of Seema David, A Scarborough Hero award winner and founder of⁠⁠

SN: Alicia, What are your favourite Scarborough Spots?

AR: I love Wexford Plaza. There are so many nice spots around there to eat, from Captain C ice cream and cakes to Crown Pastries and also Kitchen Chicken. There’s always a good variety of different shops in that area.

Scarborough Made is a social impact project championing storytelling in Toronto’s East.