Tara Mahoney

Co-founder and Creative Director

Tara Mahoney is the creative director of Gen Why Media and is currently completing her PhD in Communication at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, B.C. Her PhD research explores emerging forms of civic engagement at the intersection of politics and culture. As a PhD candidate, she is the project lead of the Creative Publics Lab and has been a research assistant on the national SSHRC-funded research projects Participedia and ‘Art for Social Change (ASC!): an integrated research program in teaching, evaluation and capacity-building’.

Tara holds a BA in international relations from University of Calgary, a MA in media production from Ryerson University and certificate in Civic Engagement and Dialogue from Simon Fraser University. As part of her Master’s thesis, Tara wrote, directed and produced her first documentary film, ForGive – a film that follows National Chief Phil Fontaine to the Vatican to seek an apology from Pope Benedict XVI for the cultural damaged caused by Indian Residential Schools. She has worked in the non-profit sector for In Focus Film School, the Sierra Club of Canada and Greenpeace at their Headquarters in Washington D.C

She’s also written a few things: musings on Russell Brand joining the Revolution, a love letter from the future and two chapter contributions to the book DEMOS: WE HAVE NEVER BEEN DEMOCRATIC including Art, Culture and Systemic Change – An Interview with Astra Taylor and Creative Publics – Participatory Political Culture and the 2015 Canadian Federal election. 

Below is an interview with Tara about the ideas and motivations behind our work with Gen Why Media and Creative Publics Lab. This piece is part of a series of interviews with local artists and practitioners being collected for the Art for Social Change research project led by the International Centre of Art for Social Change.

Fiona Rayher

Co-founder and Artistic Director


Fiona Rayher is a long-form documentary filmmaker and the Artistic Director and co-founder of Gen Why Media. Her first feature documentary, recently released, titled Fractured Land, has been extensively reviewed by the CBC, Globe and Mail, National Post, Huffington Post and others.

Fiona has a Graduate Diploma in Social Innovation from the University of Waterloo, along with a BA in political science and communications from Simon Fraser University. She has worked for various human rights organizations, the BC Civil Liberties Association, and since the age of twenty-one Fiona has made four short films.