July 17, 2018
There are many ways to know someone, and just as many fine appellations, I could apply to Angela Dione. Some of the most obvious ones include “Creative Entrepreneur” or more lightly, “Cribbage Master”. For me, one of the best that comes to mind is “Mother of Eve,” a bright and precious human who has grown up within the warmth of Market Collective.
Market Collective has been Angela’s longest labour of love over the last decade, and to know her it becomes clear that it was not a monolithic effort so much as a tapestry woven with many threads. Each of these threads is connected to a different story of a person who has chosen to put curiosity, challenge, and care at the center of her life. It makes sense: it takes an insatiable drive and creativity to understand what it takes to build a community where the sole requirement is to be passionate and to share yourself with everyone. And like everyone, I look forward to whatever incredible ventures are next for Angela Dione.
- Jordan Baylon (Calgary Arts Development)
Jim Button (Village Brewery) connected with Angela to ask some questions about her decision to move on, her personal vision with the MC, and her next adventures for the future.
When the two of you started Market Collective you had a vision for what you wanted to accomplish. Do you recall those goals? Did you meet them and/or did the natural changes of running a business take over and you accomplished something completely different?
Angel and I initially came together with two simple visions: one music, one art, both grounded in community-building. As the MC grew, it became much more diverse and expansive in what it could accomplish for the city and creative entrepreneurs. Now, the MC’s achievements have exceeded what I had dreamed of and it was able to realize what I had hoped for and more.
Over the years, I have seen the Market Collective become a platform for many artists, artisans, designers, and musicians to launch their dreams and continue to grow above and beyond it. They each took an exciting leap of faith with the MC and it has been inspiring to witness. Now, 10 years later, I am ready to take my own leap of faith and move onward to a new chapter.
What was the biggest life lessons you learned through your Market Collective experience and how are you carrying it forward?
The Market Collective spanned a formative time in my life and during this time, I was presented with many of life’s invaluable lessons.
One of the beautiful lessons I take with me is the strength of community. Through the MC, I have been honoured to be a part of a creative and supportive group of people through our events, and also to be a part of smaller circles within it; our incredible team, Blank Page Studio, and the family of friends I have created along the way. All of these hold significance in my life and I’m honoured to be a part of each one. Over the ten years that I have worked on the MC, I have been humbled by the amount of love and support both the Market Collective and I personally have received. Not only has MC taught me the strength of community for a city, but it has also taught me the strength of community in your heart. I carry these both forward.
How do you feel about giving up control on something that has dominated so much time of your life?
I have learned that life consistently involves tough decisions and it has taken courage to jump from the known into the unknown. I have also learned over the years that control is an illusion and that letting go is an art form.
I feel confident, strong, and content about this decision. I had been thinking about this for some time, and I spent the last year working alongside the talented MC team to create a sustainability within the company through operational systems and improvements. This work has given the MC a platform to embark on the next 10 years with a solid foundation. The MC is ready for Angel to continue the legacy with her creative vision. She brings vibrancy and dedication to this role, and I look forward to watching it grow.
Why is now the right time for you to look at new ventures? Can you share your next step?
After co-founding the Market Collective and helping grow it for a decade, I feel a sense of personal completion. This fulfillment was the final element that I needed to move on and it intuitively feels like the right time. I am excited for my life to shift into its new space.
As for my next step, I have decided to take the summer to fully enjoy the freedom of this transition. It is important for me to give space between the MC and my next project or position. For now, my little family will take our vintage Boler to the Kootenays and explore hidden gems by water and visit friends. We will load the canoe I got for Mother’s Day (appropriately christened “Mother”) and wander through BC before returning back to the city.
I have an ambitious nature and creative passion, and now is the time to direct that energy thoughtfully. For the immediate, the summer months with our daughter is the best decision I could make. These next months will be filled with self-reflection and priceless child-like experiences before I take that next step.
When you think back on the legacy you have created, what gives you your biggest smile?
For the last 10 years, I have been able to work with some of the most creative and inspiring people I have ever met. Each person that is a part of the MC Community has taken a step towards living their dream and works tirelessly to achieve and maintain it.
It makes me so happy to know that I have had a role in creating something that has changed the way people are able to share their passions and that projects started from a small space at the MC have grown into sustainable and creative businesses.
Some of my favourite moments of the MC happened when we were setting up the show before any of the crowd appeared. Watching artists load in their work and reconnecting with their community was a special thing to witness. It was during this time that I was able to see the dedication and determination that has gotten these creative people to a place where they can share what they love to do. It was a magic time, and we transformed an empty space, a block of wood, and concrete into an artistic celebration of career, community, and dreams. I smile knowing it will continue.
You can reach Angela at firstname.lastname@example.org.