Jessica Karuhanga lives and works in Toronto. She completed her BFA degree in visual arts at London’s Western University. Her practice often involves a complex mix of movement-based performance, video, sound, and drawing. An important objective of her work is the investigation of what she describes as “constellations of blackness.” In it, the body, usually Karuhanga’s own, serves as an expressive instrument.
In this video, bodies and gestures assert difference within the traditional history of Canadian art and particularly, its ideas of landscape. Over the twentieth century the Northern landscape has been mythologized, shaped into a symbol of national strength, and as unpopulated paradise for settler expansion. Amongst the trees, reeds, and grasses, lyrical movement—some of which relate to Karuhanga’s Ugandan heritage—celebrates diversity and growth, and beckons us to envision a broader, more accurate view of Canadian culture.
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