Iris Benedikt is a Toronto- based visual artist and artist educator with an interest in community building, social justice, and personal expression. Iris’ work focuses on exploring intimate relationships with self, mental health, and body and how those very personal parts of life interact with politics and larger questions about the world. Her practice includes painting, drawing, cartooning, installation, and sculpture and she mixes sincerity, absurdity, and humour to tackle topics that can be both difficult and mundane. As an educator, Iris values youth and child-centered play-based approach to instruction, through experiential education, inquiry, and prioritizing the voice, interests, and perspectives that young people bring to their own learning. Iris says she loves all of the work that DAREarts does and noted she has been involved with DAREarts since 2016. Right now, Iris is a teacher candidate at Queens University with a specialization in the Artist in Community Education program. She has also have worked as an outdoor educator at the Evergreen Brick Works where she built on her passion for storytelling and immersing education in nature. Iris says she is constantly learning from the kids she works with and strives to centre creativity in everything she does.