Current Artist:

Artists

The Windows To Paradise Collection

Artists participating in this Cohort.

About the Curator

Roya DelSol (she/her) is Black media artist & cultural worker currently living in T’karonto/Toronto. Creating motion work ranging from experimental documentaries to music videos; she aims for her work in all spheres to centre and uplift the experiences Black, queer, and marginalized peoples. Past photographic work captures Black femme intimacies, strength & joy in hopes of visualizing new, liberated worlds. In other mediums, this envisioning takes shape by utilizing the subversive qualities of magical realism in imagining Black futures.

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About the Artwork

These images were taken over the course of this past year. Both portraits capture a moment in time where everything felt hazy and uncertain. A moment of pause where we recognized that to make it through, we had to find stillness within to evaluate everything going on. And in those slower moments, I captured still life images as hopeful guides for the outside world I've longed to return to.
Kaela Leone is a photographer based in Toronto, Canada. I’ve always been very attuned to the micro-expressions that surface in the in-between moments — in conversation, in movement, and in pause. These moments, under carefully considered light, are the ones I love to capture most.
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This piece represents a person looking out the window to see different sceneries. The work itself can also be seen in animated form where the different scenes are present. The person is seen watching the sunset, a night sky, a field of flowers, and a cityscape - representing windows to different types of paradises available to people.
“Munea Wadud is a self-taught artist and creative - with years of experience in acrylic painting, watercolors, and many other traditional forms of visual arts, Munea is a multi-disciplinary talent. She has also taken up digital drawing as another form of outlet for her creativity. Munea is a queer, non-binary person of colour and her identity informs her work. She is passionate about social change and creates art that is body positive, feminist and inclusive.”
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About the Artwork

« this is for you » is about the black experience through me, through another black body, through you. it is about nurturing and nourishing our existence by healing the body and the inner child, by exploring and moving in space. by moving through resistance but also enjoying the nuances of stillness. occupying space to exist, to transform, to share, to be seen for us by us. my paradise resides in
my name is Bliss. i’m a 22-year-old self-taught photographer, multidimensional artist based in the south shore of Montreal. as i discover myself every day and evolve through art, i realize that the answer finds itself through my art, a documentation of life full of vulnerability and authenticity. a visual journal of the world and i. a reflection of me, a reflection of you.
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Daura Campos, What the Luck series, 135 souped film, 2021.
Daura Campos is a Latinx, self-taught, lens-based artist and curator based in Belo Horizonte, Brazil; whose photographic practice challenges traditional image-making processes. By deliberately disturbing the film's chemistry when processing, the artist's goal is to disrupt predisposed expectations when confronting photographs. The work is more than a meta-commentary on what it means to create an image; its subtext prompts broader conversations on the implications of existing in a dissident body.
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As we have all had to spend much more time inside, there is a collective desire to make our homes (and our minds) as peaceful as possible. But even with the houseplants, meditation, and reading, we find ourselves yearning to escape and return to the outside world, which appears almost magical to our eyes from inside.
Syd Martinez-Khan (she/her) is a Toronto-based traditional artist. She creates art as a form of journaling, portraying how she processes her emotions and personal experiences, as well as sharing what she finds beautiful in this world. Her paintings center Black people and people of colour, and she hopes that her art can be a source of healing, connection, and joy.
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This past year of isolation gave me a chance to experience a new form of travel, nature travel. Luckily I live in a big country where driving to see far away nature is convenient. Even my cornea being scratched, sidelining me at the end of my trip aren't enough to put me off more adventure. In a way the isolation of covid cutting off the possibility of city travel became my window to paradise.
Photography is the first form of expression I ever discovered after a lifetime of searching. I found it in 2017 right along with a twin life long goal of traveling. Photography of people and things around the world has inspired me ever since.
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About the Artwork

Captured December 2020 in Toronto, ON Digital Format
Aiming to capture the moments in between, the work of Kirk Lisaj is subdued, careful and understated. They create imagery that feels secretive, making their photographs feel as if you are a bystander, walking in on a private moment belonging to someone else. Themes of isolation and intimacy are commonplace in their work, and they aim to magnify the subtle beauty which exists in mundanity.
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The pandemic has allowed me to connect my physical space as mental space, setting boundaries of only me, myself & I and it has brought me clarity. The following photographs, though lonesome in a way, are impactful - they’ve crystallized inside me and have inspired me to feel again. I hope they evoke a sense of freedom in you, as they do for me.
My name is Nathan Ulloa and I’m a Latinx queer artist from Toronto, Canada, focusing on photography and art direction. I enjoy honing in on subjects such as architecture, interiors and objects - leveraging imagery and design to create distinct visual stories. I enjoy photography because it's immersive. It breaks the barrier that holds us from just existing and stimulation - arousal. I hope to create meaningful work that mirrors me as a queer person of color.
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This mixed media project details places I have daydreamed about when looking out of windows: deep underwater, high above the clouds and a distant galaxy far away. In each piece, the subject finds themselves longing for escape. For me, windows are like portals to different places and worlds. As long as I can create the environment in my head, I can go there.
Shane Ravel (he/him) is an Indo-Caribbean Canadian artist and storyteller currently living in T'Karonto/Toronto. He specializes in portraiture, fine art and street photography to tell authentic visual stories. He aims for his work to centre and highlight the experiences of Black, Indigenous and POC folks. Shane Ravel values creativity through his love of creating and nurturing connections, giving back to marginalized communities and making art.
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I am an abstract expressionist and Blind colourfield painter. When I look through a window, I see worlds of swirling energy to be transformed rather than escaped. The canvas is like a window into a world of energy in which I create my own multi-sensory paradise of colour, light and texture. The first file is called "Julie Mango" a diasporic multi-sensory vision of longing for Caribbean paradise.
A first-generation child of Caribbean immigrants to the treaty territory of the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation, Teneshia T. Samuel is a multi-disciplinary artist, scholar, educator and counsellor. Born visually and hearing impaired, Teneshia’s art investigates the creative process as a multi-sensory, accessible, transformational and immersive experience.
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When limitations are placed on the physical realm, our astral beings continue moving side-by-side. Coming in and out of a dream like state, I see visions of this through women dancing in conjunction to one another lit by moonlight in a velvet galaxy — a space where the souls exist when extracted into their own world and are celebrated.
Sevan Ichkhanian (she/her) is a Toronto based film photographer and visual artist. Graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts from OCAD University, she continues to drive off experience and feeling to conceptualize themes of femininity and self-love into her artwork. By pushing the limits of vulnerability and sexuality, she captures contemporary culture [through her art] to showcase community, agency, and empowerment.
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About the Artwork

'Astral Agents' are a series of mixed media photographs highlighting the extra/ordinary within the quotidian. These works emphasize the connections between nonphysical realms that we feel or choose not to feel in our everyday. 'Astral Agents' encourages witnesses to commune with the portals they escape to and from.
Jen Katshunga is an interdisciplinary artist, writer, researcher and cultural worker raised and based in Tkaronto (Toronto). In their expansive approaches to making: painting, writing, photography and performance, their work is invested in liberation and self-determination focusing on memory, space and healing as conduits for these explorations.
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In our basement apartment there is one window worth looking out, in our laundry room. This is where I spent much of the pandemic, escaping into the process of tearing and gluing paper. Soothing my anxiety with collage, and thinking about my parents. I haven’t been home in three years. The pandemic amplified a homesickness I had been ignoring. Now I wait patiently until it is safe to go home.
Brianne Burnell is a mixed media artist from Toronto, Ontario. Her work is intuitive and explorative, more interested in the process of combining colours and shapes to create unexpected results than executing a specific image. Burnell creates her work through a process of collecting, building, and arranging. Each piece contains textures from found photography, scanned found objects, and original paintings, layered with blocks of colour and arranged piece by piece like a collage.
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Built into an old battle fort on a caribbean island, this peek through hole is now peered through by tourists and locals, and looks out into the sea. This vintage mirror sits in a dark bricked corner but reflects a lush backyard garden
Nevita is a Scarborough-based multidisciplinary artist. Mainly creating works in the medium of abstract paintings and drawings, she also explores film, photography, writing, sculpture and more. Graduating from OCAD University's Cross Disciplinary: Life Studies program and minoring in Drawing and Painting, Nevita has made it her goal to explore creative expression in any medium that sparks curiosity and joy.
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About the Artwork

Shot on 35mm film, I made these pictures at a time when I was ruminating about the concept of rest as resistance, what that meant and what that actually looked like. There is no place that excites my dear amala (Tibetan for mother) more than her garden. In The Space Between Us, her hand is the focal point. Upon creating this image, she argued that there were many beautiful things growing in her garden. Why my hand? The Space Between Us is a reflection of our relationship, where I often find myself longing to know the woman before me. It is also an attempt to reconcile with what constitutes labour. What forms of invisible labour exist behind beautiful things? My amala's paradise is her garden. I wonder, will I know her through this garden? I Once Knew a Boy is a portrait of how I imagine my partner, Ej, as a young boy--a time before we met. His family and friends often tell me how much Ej has changed over the years. I've found it difficult to grasp how he could have been any other way than the way he is now. A kind, patient, and playful boy he will forever be but I also wanted to show the bold and brave man that he has come to be.
Nawang Tsomo is an emerging artist based in Toronto primarily working in photography. She is currently part of a group exhibition titled "Toronto Makes Good" curated by Steps Public Art. She has exhibited at the Bread & Butter fundraiser show with X University's student-run Artspace, in PHmuseum's photobook on mobile photography and forthcoming volume II of Carnation Zine. She was recently awarded the AGO Portfolio Review Prize at the Chang School's juried student photography show.
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About the Artwork

Several selections from my decade-and-a-half adventures in street/nature photography. I lean towards impressionism here . . . and the hope that others will see what I've seen ( and realize that we are already living in paradise! ) Enjoy!
Renaissance Man born a few centuries late. ( music, poems, photography, drawings, etc, etc )
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Civet met Rat in the bush. The rat had done nothing wrong to Civet yet Civet planned to devour Rat. This upset Rat but Civet saw nothing wrong with it. Civet, feeling justified, went to Tiger to solicit his approval on the matter. Civet told Tiger, “I met Rat on the street and as I am feeling very hungry, I asked to eat Rat but Rat is resisting, do you think what Rat is doing is right?”...
Colour and its connection to humanity is an intimate thing. Yaw Tony’s artistic practice is rooted both in the idea of human value as well as how that idea is refined and re-expressed through colour. Like proverbs and parables, he plays with the obfuscation of truths, weaving duality into his work. Preeminent in his work is the place of storytelling. In his work he aims to not simply capture beauty and freeze it within a frame, but rather to paint ideas and questions. Who am I? Where am I from?
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Reverie is a series of 3D digital artworks that sets out to invoke a divine state of daydreaming through its portrayal of ethereal worlds. Each work was made during the COVID-19 lockdowns, communicating the forms of escapism Victoria partook in, both in the processes of their creation and in the time Victoria spent staring out her window, imagining new landscapes or realities she could escape to.
Victoria is a 3D artist based in Toronto. Her art explores visual modes of storytelling, investigating themes of fantasy, escapism, and spirituality. A curiosity for new worlds informs each layer of every visual, creating new realities to lose yourself in.
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About the Artwork

This is a short time that highlights small moments that transport the author to moments of bliss.
Omi is an emerging artist and writer exploring Black expression and transcendence. They navigate these themes utilizing fiction, art writing and journalism. Though their work they seek to both clarify and mystify the Black mundane.
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About the Artwork

a series I took during the pandemic, where a friend and I took a week long roadtrip to move her across the country to move in back with her family. I fell in love with her and we got fake married in a drive thru chapel. These are little windows into our time together. Moments of being afraid, of feeling alive, of aloneness, of a new world with her, of a place that only exists now in these photos.
Kristina is a Canadian photographer based between Brooklyn, NY and Toronto.
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About the Artwork

moments of fragility, tenderness and longing captured
Mary Joy Pascua is a Toronto based writer and and artist whose practice includes photography, collage, ceramics and installation. Her work examines selfhood, belonging and the role of family histories and memory to inform the present. Mary Joy’s work, whether visual or written, is an effort to make room for feelings and vulnerabilities of all kind, especially the ones that are difficult to name and hard to place.
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About the Artwork

“If I close my eyes tight enough the birds outside start to sound like the birds from my home country, If I listen with intent the fan that heats my room starts to sound like waves outside my window. I immerse myself in my escape reality, I fall asleep with the setting sun And I wake up in the paradise outside of my window” This submission is an animation.
Zoe is a virtual and physical interior designer from the Caribbean. Her work has a focus on Caribbean symbolism and narratives with an exploration in homesickness in the Caribbean Diaspora.
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About the Artwork

"everyone saw how you took me apart" and "within and without" are both digital art pieces that examine intimacy and relationships to space and comfort. Both pieces feature the presence of large windows that seemingly allow the world to look in on these moments. Yet, the dreamlike cotton candy clouds allow these moments to remain dreamy and elusive. Making each snapshot surreal and hazy.
Harar V.A Hall is a queer Black, Jamaican-Canadian multi-disciplinary artist raised in Toronto and currently living, organizing, and creating in Tiohtià:ke/Montréal. As a visual artist, poet, and writer I have found both words and images to be compelling methods of storytelling. My work often plays with perspective, fragmented images, found/discarded objects, textiles, collage, and figures – if not forcing then hopefully nudging the viewer to look deeper.
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About the Artwork

Opulence is both the process to and a state of being richly abundant. The quest for feeling inner abundance can often be a long and winding road, with many shifts in goalposts. In this series, I explore this process visually through embracing solitude - looking to the natural world to find your way back to yourself again.
Shaza Tariq Hassan Elnour (b. 1998) is a Black femme photographer based in Canada and UAE. Shaza focuses on portraiture, fashion, and documentary photography, with the hope to create photos that are lasting and explore in many ways, the human condition.