COOLIE COOLIE VIENS | Andil Gosine
March 25 to May 21, 2017
Opening Reception Wednesday March 29 at 7pm
COOLIE COOLIE VIENS is a study of the afterlife of indentureship. Indentureship was the colonial system of labour that brought Indians and other people to the Caribbean to replace slave labour on plantations. The program ended in 1917. Through his work, Gosine interrogates the system’s historical legacy a century later, both in the social and political construction of Indo-Caribbean communities, and for its formative impact on its descendants’ most intimate experiences. In this exhibition, he interrogates himself through consideration of his experiences of pleasure and violence in the places he lived: a rural village in the Caribbean island of Trinidad, Southern Ontario cities Oshawa and Toronto, the English beachside town of Brighton, and other metropolitan centres in the United States and Europe.
Soheila Esfahani | Artist’s Project
Soheila Esfahani’s artist’s project features wooden pallets, sometimes known as wooden skids, from her recent series Cultured Pallets. In the work, Esfahani laser-etches arabesque patterns sourced from mosaic designs in the interior dome of the Imam Mosque in Isfahan, Iran. Isfahan is the ancestral city of the artist’s family, however when she returned to Isfahan for the first time in many years, she felt both connected and disconnected to the city. In this regard, the Cultured Pallets series functions as a metaphor for migration and what the artist calls “in-betweenness.” It is, as the 13th century poet Rumi writes, “My place is placeless, a trace of the traceless.” Inscribed on the underside of each pallet is the e-mail address firstname.lastname@example.org. Once the series is complete, Esfahani will return the pallets to their original use, having them circulate throughout the world. It is her hope that individuals e-mail the affixed address to correspond with the artist and to track the pallet’s migration.