The things we carry with us is a mixed media installation that explores the life of the artist’s grandmother, who experienced displacement as a child when India was partitioned as the British exited India. What the artist’s grandmother saw or experienced was never discussed but the signs of her trauma remained. The family went through much emotional upheaval as a result and shaped the artist’s anxieties as her grandmother remained the artist’s caregiver for most of her childhood.
The things we carry with us explores coping mechanisms we pick up as children to survive. And, in practice, it can take a very long time to come to terms with our realities and sometimes we never do; we live behind a net seeing and experiencing the world differently, and that becomes the only world we know.
Twinkle Banerjee (she/her) is an Indian-Canadian visual artist, who explores work that deals with social issues such as generational trauma, globalization and human rights. Understanding the pressure put on BIPOC artists for creating trauma-related work, she also tries balancing her work with introspective experiments with a focus on poetic imagery.
Twinkle has exhibited in the USA, Canada, the UK and Armenia, been published in Berlin and featured on CBC. In 2021 her artwork “Characters of Memorial Park” was part of an exhibition and publication at the ICP-New York.
Artist website: twinklebanerjee.com
Keywords: Activism | BIPOC Experience | Bipolar Disorder(s) | Trauma | CPTSD Generational Trauma
This year, the exhibition in the Rendezvous With Madness Festival will be presented in-person throughout the festival from October 27 to November 6.
The exhibition is held at Workman Arts Offsite Gallery, Artscape Youngplace, 180 Shaw Street, Unit 302, Toronto.
October 27 to November 6, 12 – 6 PM.
EXHIBITION OPENING & ARTISTS TALK
October 29, 1-4 PM, Talk at 2:30 PM
After the opening reception, engage with the artists of kind renderings as they delve into their work and practice.
Please join us for a guided tour on Thursday, November 3 at 5 PM
How can we create our own architectures of liberation? How we cared (3-channel video installation) is a return to Pandi Kumaraswamy’s archives, reinterpreting the multiple systems of care in his life, over which he had varying levels of autonomy. This expanded schematic of forced care, natural forms of care and creative care. The three sites operate within a fluid and undetermined ecosystem spanning the healthcare/medical world to the spiritual/natural based on family experiences. The schematic attempts to move away from finite solutions to healing medically diagnosed disorders. It prompts viewers to take a step back from conventional architectural practices that use speculative methods to conjure up imaginary built environments for those receiving mental health care.
Saroja Ponnambalam is an Ontario-based filmmaker. Her art practice involves working with a variety of documentary mediums – animation, photographs, family video archives and interviews. Her more recent work explores intergenerational mental health experiences through an intersectional lens.
Rupali Morzaria is a designer and film programmer currently based in Tiohti:áke/ Montreal. She is moved by storytelling and movement—in film, dance, and advertising—and uses design as a way to indulge in this fascination. Her work is based in traditional forms of print media and finding new forms of expression within contemporary media arts.
IN-PERSON VIDEO INSTALLATION
CAMH (ground floor window)
1025 Queen Street West
Oct 28 – Nov 7
This piece has an audio component that will need to be accessed through a personal mobile/cellular device onsite. If data is unavailable, access to Wi-Fi is available upon request.
Headphones/earphones are also recommended to bring to experience this installation, though not necessary if mobile/cellular device has a speaker. Workman Arts will have extra headphones available onsite upon request.
If accessing this in-person installation is a barrier and to find out alternate ways to experience this piece, please contact Paulina Wiszowata at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 416-583-4339 ext 6.
WORKSHOP – MOCA PARTNERSHIP:
FROM SCRAPBOOK TO SCREEN
Sun, Nov 7, 1 PM ET
Join artist Saroja Ponnambalam for a virtual workshop that responds to MOCA’s GTA21 exhibition.
Made with funding support from Toronto Arts Council and Ontario Arts Council
Through the voices of various artists, this web-based experience explores the relationship between mental health, language, and lineage. Many awareness campaigns urge us to “break the silence”. But the question of whether – or how – to speak is complicated. Mental health discourses are shaped by particular histories, which reverberate in the present. By juxtaposing multiple perspectives, Szepty/Whispers: Dialogue aims to expand the possibilities for how we communicate about madness, trauma, and neurodivergence. The content is offered in the form of audio files, transcripts, and ASL videos.
The process for Szepty/Whispers: Dialogue began when artist Veronique West invited seven collaborators to make audio recordings in response to open-ended questions about mental health, language and lineage. The collaborators were: mia susan amir, Kagan Goh, Maya Jones, Constantin Lozitsky, Jivesh Parasram, Kendra Place, and Manuel Axel Strain. A digital platform was developed to host the recordings, through collaboration between the Cultch Digital Storytelling Team, Sound Designer David Mesiha, Inclusive Designer JD Derbyshire, Dramaturg Kathleen Flaherty, Deaf Interpreter Ladan Sahraei, Production Coordinator Brian Postalian and Veronique West. Szepty/Whispers: Dialogue was first presented at the 2021 rEvolver Festival.
Consultants: Amy Amantea, June Fukumura, Simran Gill, and MariFer Rios.
For a full list of the Szepty/Whispers: Dialogue team’s biographies, please follow the link below:
COLLABORATOR ARTISTS TALK
Recording available online Oct 28 – Nov 7
For Artist Talk:
ASL and Closed Captions
For work in exhibition:
ASL, Transcripts, Audio Playback
Brief references to colonization, war, genocide, child abuse, suicide, and psychiatric hospitalization. Detailed description of ableism, depression, mania, trauma, and a parent’s incarceration. The content does not play automatically and can be paused or skipped.
Digital Platform Realization by: The Cultch Digital Storytelling Team
Developed at Playwrights Theatre Centre as part of the Associates program.
The project has also been supported by:
Upintheair Theatre’s rEvolver Festival
The National Theatre School of Canada’s Art Apart initiative
The parallel in-person performance has been supported by:
the Canada Council for the Arts
the BC Arts Council
the Province of British Columbia
Playwrights Theatre Centre
Progress Lab 1422
Boca del Lupo and Rice & Beans Theatre’s DBLSPK series
Mentorship with Boca del Lupo’s Artistic Director Sherry J. Yoon
Universal Limited’s Horizontal Help program
The Arts Club Theatre Company’s LEAP Playwriting Intensive
The Cultch Digital Storytelling Team would like to thank the Canada Council for the Arts
This body of work titled Coal Mines and Tree Tops follows the main character, a canary through different scenarios meant to represent an autistic experience. These images represent the experiences of the artist, Dani. However, they are meant to be related to by anyone who finds a connection to the work. This body of work discusses Dani’s personal experiences as an autistic person. Dani chose the canary as a visual metaphor for strength, sensitivity, vulnerability, and perceived expendability. Each piece explores a different experience and their creation has helped Dani process these experiences, some for the first time. In this series, Dani visually discusses subject matter such as: positive connection, strengths, relationships, abuse, sensory management and overwhelm, vulnerability to predatory individuals, coping mechanisms, the weight of masking and more.
“I decided to create this work about my experiences because I finally feel safe to do so. I feel it is time to remember out loud, to create visual evidence of past and present challenges and joys associated with my identity. I feel it is time to start sharing my experiences with others. This is a first step in what I hope will be an ongoing discussion in my work. This work serves to benefit me therapeutically and also possibly provide others with understanding and a sense of compassion between myself and those who have had similar experiences.” -Dani Crosby
Dani Crosby is an artist, illustrator, arts educator and community collaborator working and living in central Oshawa. Art has become many things for Dani – a service they offer and an experience to share in academic settings. But before any of these things it serves as a place to put the parts of themselves that have nowhere else to go. Dani recognizes how lucky they are to have this outlet. Dani has been making art since childhood and has never stopped. They began showing, creating illustrations, and teaching visual arts in 2004 and continue to this day.
JOIN THE CONVERSATION: CHANGING THE NARRATIVE
AUTISTIC REELS: RECLAIMING OUR STORIES
Sun, Oct 31, 1 PM ET
Note: The link to the virtual panel is accompanied with the film ticket to “Autistic Reels: Reclaiming Our Stories”.
All films are PWYW
Hybrid Precarity is a series of pen and ink drawings that has emerged out of a daily drawing practice from the last year of pandemic related anxieties and isolation. It is superimposed, by necessity, on ongoing issues of vulnerability, disability and the precariousness of severely limited mobility.
As internal self-portraits, these drawings respond to changes in Raudvee’s emotional and physical body, as body in process, and become records of the evolving dis-eased body. They are reflections on a strangely hybrid identity, attached to walking aids and no longer wholly human.
Hybrid Precarity is an online slideshow of black and white drawings, accompanied by a sound recording of dissonant sounds, of things creaking and broken.
Leena Raudvee is a Toronto-based visual and performance artist, who focuses on the body in relation to personal history and social interchange.
Raudvee’s drawings, which investigate the performative embodied within the drawing of a line, have been exhibited in numerous juried shows including Drawing 2021 at the John B. Aird Gallery, Drawing Unlimited at the Propeller Gallery and Unpacking Pandemic Pondering with OCADU and Gallery 1313.
In performance art, Raudvee has explored disability and aging in Teetering on an Edge for Pi*llOry in Toronto and in Making Space, as video, screened in Photophobia 2020, presented by Hamilton Artists Inc. and Hamilton Art Gallery.
Recipient of the Ontario Arts Council grant for Deaf and Disability Arts Projects:
Materials for Visual Artists
Amplify Collective loudly and proudly presents the performance experience
People in positions of power and their systems of oppression exert intense pressure on historically oppressed individuals and communities. Still we rise! We will not crumble in the face of this Intergenerational Trauma. Instead we continuously challenge racism, sexism, poverty and injustice. United we push back against these oppressive systems, the patriarchy and inequity. The strength that exists within our communities and the weight of injustice is woven within this performance through the use of symbols, body movement, music, distressed textiles and elaborate, wearable sculptures. Individually we endure, but collectively we are UNBREAKABLE.
Together we continue to heal!
Performances by Kayla Ross-Jackson, Caitlin Marzali, KJ McKnight, Matt Eldracher, Sebastian Marzali, Chy Ryan Spain, Scarlet Black, Sze-Yang Ade-Lam, Aryana Malekzadeh, Jaz Fairy J & more!
Curation & Costuming: Allie Amplify
Lighting Designer: Sebastian Marzali
Set Assistant: Jack Comerford
Makeup: Elene Seepe
Hair: Dmitry Komendant
Amplify Collective is a Toronto-based wearable art, performance and advocacy company. They create one-of-a-kind wearable art pieces, as well as host community classes and live experiences. Founder Allie Amplify has an extensive background in fashion, marketing and events. Her designs have lit up the stages of Fashion Art Toronto, the MMVA’s, PRIDE, the ROM and more!
Amplify Collective is a community of individuals with lived mental health and addiction experiences. Despite these challenges they have prevailed and hope to share a message of resilience and growth.
Turn up the volume with Amplify!
OPENING NIGHT & RECEPTION
Reception + The Meaning of Empathy (with panel) + UNBREAKABLE
Starting at 5 PM at CAMH Auditorium
IN PERSON PERFORMANCE
Thurs, Oct 28, 9:30 PM
CAMH Auditorium, 1025 Queen St W
The recorded live streamed performance is available to view in the In(site) virtual exhibition:
Rather than experience the festival’s exhibition on-site, this year we experience it “in-site” — in a website, in the digital world, in the virtual. The works in the festival this year have been selected with the intention of being experienced virtually.
The artists bring insight to their experiences of the world having changed, how it continues to change and what this change can offer. This includes our growing awareness around mental health, our relationships with both the physical and digital worlds, and how the works can incite us into action. The exhibiting works investigate these themes and more, providing room to engage with the arts in a time when interacting and experiencing work has been significantly impacted. Through these works, we recognize that we are in the moment, in the current, in the site.
Visit the virtual exhibition here:
This year, the exhibition in the Rendezvous With Madness Festival will be presented virtually which will be accessible throughout the festival from October 28 to November 7. Work including timed events and performances will be accessible through the virtual exhibition site through the link below:
VIRTUAL GUIDED TOUR
Watch the virtual guided tour of the In(site) exhibition held on Sat, Oct 30, 12 PM ET
If either online or in-person access is a barrier, please contact Paulina Wiszowata at email@example.com.
Workman Arts will have available the In(site) virtual exhibition displayed and interactable on a monitor in their front office at 1025 Queen St W Suite 2400.
Available during Box Office hours:
Monday – Friday, 10 AM – 4 PM.
Visit the Accessibility page for further festival info.
Self // Isolation is a collection of digital pieces generated from photographs taken by the artist in her home. One portrait was taken for every month she spent alone in isolation during the COVID-19 pandemic. Using code to manipulate the photographs through a process called generative art, the images morph from everyday household objects and scenes of day-to-day life, into indiscernible blurs. Drawing from experience with anxiety and depression, the artist attempts to capture the chaos, fog and distortion, which is often experienced in times of trauma, and acutely felt by most during the pandemic. The project is a comment on the unreliability of memory and the brain’s misperception of reality, and ultimately a reflection on the artist’s progressive mental decline during the lockdown.
Chelsea Watson is an artist from Calgary, Canada currently residing in Toronto. Her unique process, known as generative or computational art, uses creative coding to make computer programs that create art. Chelsea’s work is purposefully random with an appreciation for imperfection. She draws inspiration from tactile art forms, such as paintings, ceramics and textiles to create layered and textured pieces with code as her medium.
SELF ISOLATION – LEARNING TO MAKE COMPUTATIONAL ART
DURING A GLOBAL PANDEMIC
In spring 2020, Chelsea Watson taught herself how to make art from code by creating 100 computational pieces in 100 days. What started as an exploration of a new artistic medium, this structured approach to creating art became a way for her to connect and cope while self-isolating for the better part of a year. Join Chelsea as she takes you through her challenge, and walks you through a hands-on workshop to explore generative art and introduce the basics of creating art using code.
Recording available online Oct 28 – Nov 7
GENRE: DANCE, INTERACTIVE, MEDIA ART, MUSICAL, PERFORMANCE ART, POETRY, SHORT FILM, THEATRE, VISUAL ART
TOPIC: COMMUNITY, EDUCATION, MUSIC
Put Friday, June 25 in your calendar – we’ll be doing an end of term virtual open house to showcase the work that Workman Artists have been doing throughout the spring term. If you’d like to see what we’ve been up to, click the RSVP button to register and receive the link to join. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.
5:00-5:10 Land Acknowledgement/Welcome
5:10-5:15 Performance Art Salon
5:35-5:50 First Person Documentary
5:50-6:10 Find your Voice
6:10- 6:20 The Exploration & Expression of Body/Space
6:20- 6:30 Bruised Years Choir – performance by Julie Crann & Ethelrida Zabala-Laxa
6:30- 7:00 Reclaiming Our Mother Tongues & Write Out of Your Comfort Zone
7:00- 8:00 Self Stories Theatre
This event is FREE and everyone is welcome. We hope you can join us to enjoy this showcase from home – wherever that may be! In case the Zoom event reaches capacity, we will also live stream this event on the Workman Arts Facebook page.
We also have a virtual Gallery on Flickr https://www.flickr.com/photos/193283975@N06/galleries/72157719479293760/
Creator: Wieslawa Nowicka / Video projection, 00:01:3
Into the dark of my skin uses a bird’s eye view to look at all possible perspectives, going beyond the corners of the frame. Mutated and shared bodies visually meet in only one spot, never meeting in a second. Their virtual encounter is a need that satisfies and nourishes the fetal and its obsolete memory. This, unfortunately, is a search for impossible love or the cohabitation of two human beings, which is only possible through a visual juxtaposition. The video medium creates a ground that allows a meeting…impossible bodies, different times and places.
Wieslawa Nowicka explores the branches of visual art and its pluralism. As a result, she has liberated herself from a singularity, permitting her to explore the facets of history, anthropology, and psychoanalysis through the plurality of arts – painting, design, performance and video installations.
Photos by Henry Chang
Please Note: There is one virtual ticket available for the entire Re:Building Resilience Exhibition. Whether you’d like to see one project or all of them, you only need to book one ticket to access everything. The exhibition runs October 15-25, and all purchasers will be sent a link to view the virtual content. Any ticket bought prior to October 15 will receive a follow up email on the 15th with the link.
Self-Care Kits are available for free curbside pickup to ticket holders. Kits can be picked up from 651 Dufferin Street between the hours of 10AM-9PM, October 15-25. If pickup is not an accessible option for you, contact firstname.lastname@example.org for accommodation.