A Matter of Taste | About the Artists

Francine Cunningham

Francine Cunningham is an award-winning Indigenous writer, artist and educator. A graduate of the UBC Creative Writing MFA program, Cunningham’s work was longlisted for the 2018 Edna Staebler Personal Essay Contest, won the 2019 Indigenous Voices Award for unpublished prose, and won the 2018 Short Grain Writing Contest. On/Me is her first book and has been shortlisted for the inaugural BC and Yukon Book Award Jim Deva Prize for Writing that Provokes and the 2020 Indigenous Voices Award in Poetry.

Yasmine Dalloul

Yasmine Dalloul is a Lebanese and Palestinian writer living in Montreal, Canada. Yasmine has a professional background in lifestyle journalism, content marketing and e-commerce copywriting, but writing about food is her greatest passion. Whether it’s through her weekly croissant blog or sharing the history of some of her favorite traditional dishes with friends, the topic of food and flavor is always on her mind (and fingers!).

Juliane Foronda

Juliane Foronda is a Filipina-Canadian artist, organiser and writer whose work is invested in the tradition of preservation from a feminist perspective. Predominantly through sculpture, object, intervention and text, her practice considers the structures, labour, care and intimacy associated with built environments. She received her MA in Fine Arts from Listaháskóli Íslands (Iceland University of the Arts), and holds a BA in Studio Art from the University of Guelph. Juliane is currently based in Glasgow, Scotland where she has been undertaking independent research on feminist hospitality at Glasgow Women’s Library.

Bhaswati Ghosh

Bhaswati Ghosh writes and translates fiction and non-fiction. Her first book of fiction, Victory Colony, 1950 is now out from Yoda Press. Bhaswati’s first work of translation from Bengali into English–My Days with Ramkinkar Baij–has been published by Delhi-based Niyogi Books. This work also won her the Charles Wallace (India) Trust Fellowship for translation in 2009. Her stories have appeared in Letters to My Mother and My Teacher is My Hero—anthologies of true stories published by Adams Media. Bhaswati’s writing has appeared in several literary journals, including Cargo Literary, Cafe Dissensus Everyday, Pithead Chapel, Warscapes, Earthen Lamp Journal, Lakeview International Journal of Literature and Arts, Stealing Time, Open Road review, Humanities Underground, Global Graffiti, The Four Quarters Magazine, Parabaas, Coldnoon, Stonecoast Review, and The Maynard. Bhaswati lives in Ontario, Canada.

Olivia Klevorn

Olivia Klevorn is queer, Black writer born in Chicago, IL and living in Toronto, ON. With a master’s degree in visual anthropology from Oxford University, Olivia’s approach to writing is multi-disciplinary and incorporates various forms of poetry, narrative, and academic inquiry.

Su-Ying Lee

Su-Ying Lee is an independent curator and has also worked in institutions. Her projects have taken place across Canada, in Hong Kong, Mexico City and Quezon City (Metro Manila, Philippines).

Aislinn Leggett

Aislinn Leggett is a Montreal-based artist. She studied at Concordia University and has exhibited in Canada and internationally. Aislinn explores the notions of femininity, memory and archives through photography and installation.

Pinki Li

Pinki Li is a first-generation Chinese-Canadian artist/settler living and learning on the unceded ancestral lands of the Musqueum, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh First Nations. At the age of five, she picked up the English language and a pen, with vengeance. Her writing has filled more than twenty five journals and nine years worth of online blog entries, which she now reads aloud professionally. Pinki writes for and about contemporary performance—contemplating issues of food, race, and the anti-colonial body. She is a late sleeper, a late riser, a late bloomer, a latecomer, and a late-night snacker.

Alvin Luong

Alvin Luong is an artist who creates performances and videos. Luong’s artworks are based on stories of human migration, histories of land, and dialogues from the working class and diaspora communities that he lives and works with. These stories are combined in Luong’s artworks to produce discussions about historical development, political economy, and social reproduction. The artist’s working method is driven by an ethical desire to transcend communication barriers encountered by diasporic and working class communities. This ethical desire has led to the use of narrative performances for video because it is a fundamental mode of expression and communication. The presence of music and humour in Luong’s artworks also stem from the same ethical desire. Luong lives and works in Toronto and is currently creating work about migratory corridors and transitory lives between Southern China, Vietnam, and the West.

Lauren Marsden

Lauren Marsden is a Canadian filmmaker and media artist with Caribbean roots. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Visual Arts from the University of Victoria and a Master of Fine Arts from the California College of the Arts, where she studied social practice, performance art, video, and filmmaking. Lauren Marsden’s creative work studies the nature of performance and explores the ways a performative act can be documented and re-circulated in moving images, often in relation to contentious and complex landscapes and identities. Her work has been exhibited at galleries and film festivals in Canada, the United States, Italy, Mexico, and Trinidad & Tobago. She is currently in the development phase for her first feature film, a magical realist modernization of a Caribbean folklore character named Mama D’Lo.

Maria Isabel Martinez

Maria Isabel Martinez is a writer of Colombian descent, born and living in Toronto.

Aliya Mazari

Aliya Mazari is a writer, photography researcher, and her family’s unofficial historian living between Karachi and unceded Coast Salish Territories. Her work is informed by experiences growing up and living in Pakistan and Canada (as a settler of colour). She holds a Master of Arts in Photography Preservation and Collections Management from Ryerson University. Previously, Aliya was working at Walter Phillips Gallery at Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity. In 2017, she was a selected participant in the Emerging Museum Professionals Training Program administered by the Ontario Museum Association.

Susie Mensah

Susie Mensah is a very dramatic, double Aquarius & Cancer woman based in Tkaronto. Through curious writing & performing, her personal manifesto is rooted in vulnerability and the power of our sacred voice. She is currently involved in community work, specifically working with folks experiencing homelessness. Her writings are a reflection of body justice, romantic disappointments, the erotic, and exploring the violent nature of fear. It is very important to note that she still watches old episodes of “I Love New York.” Her works occupy space in a fat phobic and anti-black society, while navigating the woes of love and pleasure as a tool in our collective liberation. With the intention to heal herself, her practice is meant to help folks identify their own private alchemy.

Kosisochukwu Nnebe

Kosisochukwu Nnebe is a Nigerian-Canadian visual artist. An economist by training and a policy analyst by profession, her visual arts practice aims to engage viewers on issues both personal and structural in ways that bring awareness to their own complicity. Her work has been exhibited at AXENEO7, the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, Place des Arts, the Art Gallery of Guelph, the Nia Centre, Studio Sixty Six, Z-Art Space, Station 16, and the Mohr Gallery in Mountain View, California,. She has given presentations on her artistic practice and research at universities across Quebec, including Laval, McGill and Concordia, and has facilitated workshops at the National Gallery of Canada, the Ottawa Art Gallery, and Redwood City High School in California. She is currently based in Ottawa.

Julladonna Park

Julladonna Park is a writer and program manager living in Vancouver, B.C. Her writing has been featured in Human Parts, Haute Magazine, and LinkedIn Pulse.

Anya Shen

Anya is an Asian-Canadian humanities student to-be at the University of Toronto. She is currently based in Calgary, Alberta. Her writing sprawls from literary criticism to free-form poetry, to blatant love letters for popular culture. She works often with filmmaking projects as well, and is a recent finalist in the 2020 Quarantine International Film Festival.

Angela Sun

Angela Sun is a mad, fat, first generation/ settler theatre performer, creator, producer, arts administrator, and writer of East Asian descent. She has previously performed in or co- created works for The Bentway, the Gardiner Museum, and the Art Gallery of Ontario; as well as the Toronto Fringe Festival, the Hamilton Fringe Festival, the Paprika Festival, the SummerWorks Performance Festival, and the InspiraTO Festival. She has worked with a variety of emerging and established artistic companies including Factory Theatre, Reel Asian Film Festival, Theatre Passe Muraille, Fixt Point, Political Movement, Theatre ARTaud, The ARTillery Collective, Silk Bath Collective, xLq, Broadleaf Theatre, Little Black Afro Theatre, Filament Incubator, Fancy Bits Theatre, Re:Play, Hart House Theatre, Canadian Rep Theatre, Mixed Company Theatre, Toronto Laboratory Theatre, and Toronto Playback Theatre.

Tamil Archive Project

Tamil Archive Project (TAP) is a collective which prioritizes the participation and experiences of racialized non-binary people and women in the Greater Toronto Area with histories of trauma and marginalization. Our collective emerged out of a need for makeshift forms of belonging in diasporic spaces and centering of communal care whilst reconfiguring contemporary art practices. We believe the archival function of our collective plays a key role in reminding artists of the legacies of resistance we draw from neighbourhoods to create our futures.

Participating members for this project: Ambihai Akilan, Yasmeen Nematt Alla, Katherine Bell, Vidhya Elango, Tashnim Jerin, Manvinder Kaur, Madeleine Lychek and Vasuki Shanmuganathan

Luxshie Vimaleswaran

Luxshie Vimaleswaran is in her third year at York University, completing a double major in English and Kinesiology. She enjoys creating works using acrylic and gouache in her visual practice as an emerging youth artist and is currently expanding her skills in graphic design. She uses writing in all forms to investigate parts of herself, colonial legacies and her neighbourhood of Scarborough.

Weppler & Mahovsky

Rhonda Weppler (born in Winnipeg) and Trevor Mahovsky (born in Calgary) have worked collaboratively since 2004. They share a studio practice in Etobicoke. Both artists have MFA degrees from the University of British Columbia, where they met in 1996.

Their work has been shown extensively throughout Canada, and exhibited in galleries and museums internationally, including LABoral (Gijon), Dos de Mayo (Madrid), the Power Plant (Toronto), Tokyo Wonder Site, and loop-raum (Berlin). Mahovsky has written for catalogues and journals such as Artforum and Canadian Art.

Their work is represented in public collections including Musée d’art Contemporain de Montreal, Vancouver Art Gallery, and the National Gallery of Canada.

Amanda White

Amanda White is an interdisciplinary artist and scholar working at the intersection of art, environment and culture, with a particular interest in alternatives to dominant visualizations of the environmental. She has exhibited and published her work widely and across disciplines with support from the Canada Council for the Arts, the Ontario Arts Council, the Toronto Arts Council and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, among others. White holds a PhD from Queen’s University, MFA from the University of Windsor and BFA from OCADU.

Letticia Cosbert Miller

Letticia Cosbert Miller is a Toronto-based writer, curator, and editor, and the Director of Koffler.Digital. Letticia studied Classics, earning a B.A. from the University of Toronto, and an M.A. from Western University, where she specialized in erotic Latin poetry. Her writing and editorial work has been featured in BlackFlash Magazine, Ephemera Magazine, Sophomore Magazine, The Ethnic Aisle, and publications by Gardiner Museum, YTB Gallery, Xpace, Trinity Square Video, Aga Khan Museum, and Akimbo.

Natasha Whyte Gray

Natasha Whyte-Gray is an interdisciplinary designer, artist, and writer based in Toronto. She recently graduated from Concordia University with a B.A. in Communication Studies and a concentration in Intermedia. She uses critical design practices to create dynamic and interactive experiences, exploring the multifaceted intersections of design and art with culture and politics.

Special thanks to Patricia Ritacca and Mary Anderson for their support in the curatorial and production processes, respectively.

A Matter of Taste Chapter Two: Pinki Li, Lauren Marsden, Anya Shen, Weppler & Mahovsky

Chapter I.

A Matter of Taste Chapter Two: Pinki Li, Lauren Marsden, Anya Shen, Weppler & Mahovsky

Chapter I.