Artist talk and Q&A
Moderated by Sally Frater, Curator of Contemporary Art at the Art Gallery of Guelph
Artist Dawit L. Petros presents a talk on how his work critically explores the entanglements of colonialism and modernity. This talk was moderated by Sally Frater, then Curator of Contemporary Art at the Art Gallery of Guelph, and took place as a secure Zoom Webinar.
Tracing the trajectory of his exploration through successive research projects, Petros highlights how these creative investigations speak to the complex colonial and postcolonial histories connecting East Africa and Europe as well as to how these histories are reflected today in the interplay of mobility, colonization, and contemporary stories of migrancy. While the histories of Black Canadians from the Horn of Africa – Eritrea, Ethiopia, and Somalia – are a vital component of contemporary Canadian communities, their complex narratives expand familiar conceptualizations of African Canadian or Black Canadian experiences.
Petros’ upcoming exhibition Prospetto a Mare (Prospectus to Sea) will be presented at the Art Gallery of Guelph from September 16 to December 12, 2021, featuring new work as well as elements from The Stranger’s Notebook (2016-17), which addressed the West’s limited knowledge of cross-border flows and diasporas within the African continent, as well as Spazio Disponibile (2019), which examined contemporary flows of Africans out of the continent in relation to European colonial history in Eritrea.