Video from Diane: Course Wrap Up and Still Life mini-lecture

Hi Foundations students, I hope you are home and staying well, and keeping your spirits up. We are taking part in a very meaningful moment – where the world is coming together to care for the most vulnerable among us. Remembering this larger purpose for this period helps me feel calmer, and better able to take care of myself and help my family. I hope you can remember the good you are doing too!

See the information in writing below to summarize what you are required to finish the Foundations Course. I will summarize it in this video – and also give you a mini-lecture to discuss the important ideas in the New Nature Morte/Still Life lecture. Listen to the whole thing – and I hope you can take some time to immerse yourself in meaningful activities like reading, writing, exploring new contemporary artists, and making art! Stay safe, Diane

Summary of course wrap up, and a some extra lecture notes.

SART 1050 Foundation Studio:

Adapted course materials

Important notes about final assignments:

Your final Re-Do project, and the OPTIONAL Still Life assignment in Foundation Studio can be done from home.

You will not have to go to campus for any reason, to use studios or materials for the rest of the term to complete this course. Tools and equipment, and the studio will not be available.

I would recommend you use your laptops, phones, and digital cameras at home to complete your projects. Artists are famously resourceful, in fact a few extra constraints can boost creativity, and create new meaning in your works. You can finish your works for this course using materials and things you find in your home.


Send your TA’s an email if you have questions about this information or your final work. Give us all a day or two to reply – since we are all multi-tasking work, travel and family responsibilities at this time.  





 If you submit your Re-Do final image – we will give you a final grade based on all your work this term up to this project. And you will not need to do any more projects. If you want to improve your grade, or have time and would like to learn more and finish another artwork – great! Do the last assignment too – the Still Life. (Attached and on the blog course material page) We are happy to comment on and grade this work too – if you submit it by the deadline by email to your TA.

Your final works will be graded generously, with the consideration that they have been completed independently and without studio equipment and supports. And we all know this has been a stressful time – so do your best and we will consider all of these factors in your final grading. I do expect the works to be submitted on time for these adapted deadlines – keep in touch if you are ill or have other serious obstacles to doing so and we will take everything into consideration.

Foundation 1050 ASSIGNMENTS

  1. Re-Do Image

As everyone has had a chance to see lots of works by artists in lectures, and discuss their ideas in tutorial – you can complete a version of this project for a new deadline. You may need to make modifications to your ideas to stick with rules for social distancing, and for staying home.

Re-visit lectures and references for this project:

Submit to your TA by email:


You must also include a title, your name, and a short description of your work.

Include an image of the original artwork you are re-doing too for reference

No prep work images are needed.

You will not need to hand in prep-work – just one or two final images, the reference image, and a short description.

 Deadline to email your TA will be at the end of the day on Thursday March 26th

  • Still Life Photo: OPTIONAL Final Assignment*

*NOTE: We will give students a final mark based on work submitted so far, up to the Re-Do project. If you are not happy with your grade, or want to learn a little more and get another work done for grading – do this assignment below.

            See attached for the Still Life assignment sheet.

See lectures and references for this project:

See my on-line video discussing this final OPTIONAL project:

OPTIONAL Submit to your TA by email:

ONE or TWO FINAL IMAGES of your Still Life assignment (see attached)

You must also include a title, your name, and a short description, references for your work*

No prep work images are needed.

**Note the main concepts and compositional elements at play in your final work, and we will look for evidence you have explored the examples and descriptions in the lecture materials. Reference some works from the links above that have informed/influenced your thinking in your project.

 OPTIONAL Deadline will be at the end of the day on Thursday April 2nd.

Note: If you hand in this optional assignment –we will mark it very generously – and it may help improve your grade up to now.

  • NOTE: Group Presentation and Summary for TWO SIDES is cancelled. This assignment will no longer be required to complete the course.

WATCH Diane’s Video summary of all this information, and lecture summary for Still Life assignment:

TA’s Email:




Field Trip to Toronto

Winter 2020

The Power Plant

NAEEM MOHAIEMEN – What we found after you left

Current Chapter: Two Meetings and a Funeral (2017)

“The film presented this season is Two Meetings and a Funeral (2017), which probes a pivot of power in the 1970s between the Non-Aligned Movement (the anti-imperialist forum for states not allied to the United States or the Soviet Union) and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (an alliance of Muslim-majority countries). Images of triumphalist transnational architecture and documentary footage from political congresses come together in a narrative woven by Algerian publisher Samia Zennadi and Indian historian Vijay Prashad that uncovers a history of the Cold War period from the perspective of Socialist states that were wary of the Soviet Union and Islamic republics.” –

RASHID JOHNSON – Anxious Audience

“Johnson’s work harnesses the rich symbolism and histories of varied materials that have personal meaning and at times are signifiers of greater African-American cultural identity. Black soap, made from the ashes of burned plant matter and commonly used in West Africa, is mixed with wax and applied as pigment onto the white tiled surface — for Johnson, a way of complicating associations of cleanliness and healing. The rigidly uniform support equally evokes the tiles of subway stations as well as rational grids of minimalist art, and through Johnson’s frenetically incised portraits a vivid impression of human presence emerges.” –


“The exhibition will encompass works from the past decade that reveal the range of Ramírez-Figueroa’s preoccupations, from conspiracy theories to bird song and Guatemala’s architectural history. It will also include a newly commissioned work, which takes as its starting point the cacaxte, a ladder-like tool for carrying objects on one’s back common among indigenous populations of Latin America. In this new work, Ramírez-Figueroa reinvents the object to consider its associations with colonial oppression alongside its mythical significance.” –

DAWIT L. PETROS – Spazio Disponibile

Spazio Disponibile – Italian for ‘Available Space’ – scrutinizes historical gaps in European memory, particularly that of modern Italy. Alluding to vacant advertising sections that appeared in Rivista Coloniale, a widely circulated early 20th century magazine and the official organ of the Italian colonial project, the title is also a reference to the colonial gaze that viewed the lands of Africa as ‘available’ space to occupy and exploit.” –

MOCA Toronto

CARLOS BUNGA – A Sudden Beginning

“Inspired by the simplicity of the museum’s architecture and the rhythm of its columns, Bunga will both stress and challenge the structure’s physicality. His formidable installations and nomadic sensibility will deepen his long-standing inquiry into some of the most poignant subjects of our time: stability, certainty and permanence. Incorporated into the exhibition are several new sculptures made from locally sourced furniture — side tables, writing desks, gilded frames and cabinets — that are reworked into painterly cityscapes. ” –

SHELAGH KEELEY – An Embodied Haptic Space

“In the visceral, site-specific installations she has been producing for over 40 years, Keeley balances the speed and rigidity of digital photography with the slowness and freedom of drawing in an expanded field. At the root of this installation are photographic traces of the MOCA building pre-renovation. Through her new wall drawing, one space in time is transferred into the present, as traces of labour are interwoven and transformed by a gestural response to the site. Keeley’s multimedia practice explores our built environment and the human body, detailing the ways in which they resonate as traces of social history.” –

MEGAN ROONEY – Hush Sky Murmure Hole

“Having spent her teenage years in Markham, Ontario, Rooney’s experiences of suburban North America inform her choice of materials, colour palette and subject matter. Her work explores notions of traditional femininity through the lenses of domestic space, the political haven of the garden, consumption-based societies and the mythological. At the same time, Rooney probes how our bodies are informed by and respond to the environments, systems and inanimate objects that surround us.” –


Presented as part of the exhibition.

Friday, March 27 at 7 pm (Chapter I) 
Saturday, March 28 at 2 pm (Chapter II) 
Sunday, March 29 at 2 pm (Chapter III)

Choreography: Temitope Ajose-Cutting
Sound: Paolo Thorsen-Nagel
Performers: Temitope Ajose-Cutting, Leah Marojevic, Megan Rooney, Moira Rooney
Direction, Text and Costumes: Megan Rooney

SARAH SZE – Images in Debris

“Simultaneously a sculptural installation and functional projection tool, Images in Debris lends equal weight to images and objects, exploring the edges between the two and bringing both into dialogue with the surrounding architecture. At its centre is an L-shaped desk, inspired by the artist’s own studio desk, which, acting like a projector at the centre of a planetarium, casts images onto an intricate structure extending from the desktop and across the gallery walls.” –

DORNITH DOHERTY – Archiving Eden: Exchange

Archiving Eden: Exchange presents x-ray images of 5,000 seeds — the smallest number required to preserve a single plant species. Housed within a vault-like structure, the installation by artist Dornith Doherty comes to life during seed exchange events, where visitors are invited to remove an image from the vault’s walls and replace it with a transparent envelope containing a single Canadian seed. Over time, the installation will change both physically and visually: from representational to actual, dark to light.” –

Canadian Artists – Spotlights

Rajni Perrera:

Lives and works in Toronto, Canada

“The canon, during my school years, started to fail me as an immigrant,” says Perera. “It’s really Eurocentric, it’s very white-centric, and I stopped seeing myself in what I was being taught.” So during her time at OCAD University, Perera began to delve on her own into art history outside of Western constraints, where miniaturist painting caught her eye. She subversively blends elements of this tradition with her love of sci-fi and fashion to create meticulously painted, carefully detailed patterned works, which are often empowering portraits of women of colour.

 Rajni Perera was born in Sri Lanka in 1985 and lives and works in Toronto. She explores issues of hybridity, sacrilege, irreverence, the indexical sciences, ethnography, gender, sexuality, popular culture, deities, monsters and dream worlds. All of these themes marry in a newly objectified realm of mythical symbioses. They are flattened on the medium and made to act as a personal record of impossible discoveries. In her work she seeks to open and reveal the dynamism of these icons, both scripturally existent, self-invented and externally defined. She creates a subversive aesthetic that counteracts antiquated, oppressive discourse, and acts as a restorative force through which people can move outdated, repressive modes of being towards reclaiming their power.



“Artists Rajni Perera and Nep Sidhu combine languages of ancestral technology and science fiction to create a parallel visual universe. Through their sympathetic and vivid visuals, the artists emphasize an unapologetically immigrant and Indigenous forward futurism. Together they advance a victorious campaign for new empires that subvert and resist the dominance and violent effects of colonialism and modernist notions of utopia.


Colonialism occurs when a country or a nation takes control of other lands, regions, or territories outside of its borders (boundaries of the country) by turning those other lands, regions, or territories into a colony. Usually, it is a more powerful, richer country that takes control of a smaller, less powerful region or territory. Sometimes the words “colonialism” and “imperialism” are used to mean the same thing.

In the 1700s and 1800s, many of the richer, more powerful European countries (such as BritainFranceSpain, and the Netherlands) established colonies in the continents of AfricaSouth AmericaAsia, and the Caribbean.

Some countries use colonialism to get more land for their people to live in. They helped settlers move to the new area. The local people living in the land or territories were usually moved away by using force and violence from armies. To protect these settlers from the local residents who were pushed aside, colonial nations often set up a military fort or colonial police system.

Other countries use colonialism to get more land so that they can use the land for farming or to extract (take out) resources such as trees (wood), coal, or metals, or to create a local government or military fort. ( Other countries use local, colonized people as cheap labourers and slaves.”

The effects of colonizing, exploiting, policing, moving, murdering and enslaving people reverberates in the ideas, identities cultures, health, wealth and well being of colonized peoples for generations.

Diaspora: “A diaspora (/daɪˈæspərə/)[1] is a scattered population whose origin lies in a separate geographic locale.” (Often involuntary dispersion – as slaves from Africa moved involuntarily make up an “African diaspora”.)

See the series:

Utopia: “A utopia (/juːˈtoʊpiə/yoo-TOH-pee-ə) is an imagined community or society that possesses highly desirable or nearly perfect qualities for its citizens.[1] The opposite of a utopia is a dystopia.” (

Utopia may be impossible, or only an idea – because what is utopian for one group may be dystopian for others.

Neo-Exoticism: “perceptions of ethnic female sexuality prevalent in Western culture – a set of  (mostly manufactured) ideas used to market products to wealthy Anglosaxon consumers, as well as perpetuate an exoticized, idealized image of ethnic female sexuality”

No Pigs In Space

Futurism: “Ideals of Futurism remain as significant components of modern Western culture; the emphasis on youth, speed, power and technology finding expression in much of modern commercial cinema and culture.” tps://


“Aftro-Futurism is defined as: “

“Afrofuturism is many things, but the short definition is: an aesthetic movement with an Afrocentric, science fiction-inspired vision of the future.

This dazzling movement spans many media – from literature to film to music and, of course, the visual arts. Beautiful cyborg queens, spaceships that put Star Wars to shame and the most wicked sunglasses you can imagine are just a few of its signature features.

Born in the early 1990s, Afrofuturism is as much a critique of today as it is a vision of tomorrow. By painting a picture of a future populated with people of colour who have technologically enhanced bodies and superhuman strength, who drive opulent spacecrafts and live in worlds where power is not a struggle, Afrofuturism artists imagine a future that has left a problematic world of Euro-centrism, oppression and injustice in the past. “”

See the series:

Walter Scott:

Walter Scott: “Wendy is a post-art school 20-something girl who has dreams of art stardom. She lives in a city similar to Montreal. Despite her intelligence and ambitions to become a super famous artist, she makes a lot of dumb decisions, is wasted all the time, makes out with dumb guys in dumb bands, and is generally an emotional wreck. She is also trendy and has nice hair.”

Ken Lum:

International Dumpling Festival, 2018 for Toronto Nuit Blanche

“For this occasion, Vancouver-born, Philadelphia-based artist Ken Lum created a new work titled International Dumpling Festival (2018), a participatory installation disguised as a functioning night market, featuring seven food vendors that sold a selection of dumplings including Chinese wontons, Jamaican patties, Tibetan momos, Colombian empanadas, and Polish pierogis.

The work was integral to “The Things They Carried,” a main exhibition zone curated by Tairone Bastien that “reflects on the immigrant stories of Toronto.” Dumpling is a popular, globalized dish with myriad cultural variants, many of which have become iconic menu items in ethnic enclaves around the world. As Lum put it, dumpling is “an allegory of Toronto, with its working-class roots. It’s a peasant food, with immigration built right in.” Fittingly, the installation was situated on James Street, which was part of the Ward, formerly home to Toronto’s first diasporic Chinese, Italian, Jewish, Irish, and Black communities during the late 1890s and early 1900s. These communities were later relocated and the Ward, considered as a slum by many, was eradicated in order to make space for the construction of the Toronto City Hall and its surrounding facilities.” 

“Despite the work’s celebration of Toronto’s immigrant history, it ironically reflected a continued tendency not to see migrants and their cultures as distinct and worthy of appreciation beyond their superficial, consumable contributions. In between the trends of cultural consumption and recognition, where do the peoples to whom the commodified minority cultures belong position themselves in the larger socio-political structure? ”

Field Trip to Toronto

The Power Plant

The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery a Canadian non-collecting public gallery devoted to contemporary art, located in Toronto, Ontario at Harbourfront Centre.

Hajra Waheed: Hold Everything Dear

Hold Everything Dear” takes a single form — the spiral — as a starting point to reflect on processes of upheaval in human experience. Partly inspired by a collection of essays on survival and resistance by art critic and novelist John Berger, the works act as a meditation on undefeated despair and the possibilities for radical hope.

Naeem Mohaiemen: What we found after you left

Tripoli Cancelled” was shot on location at Ellinikon Airport, Athens’ former international airport which closed in 2001 when a new airport was built for the 2004 Olympic Games. After making the film, Mohaimen ran workshops in which the photographers, most too young to have ever flown from Ellinikon Airport while it was in operation, visited the airport, many for the first time, and produced their own documents of left-overs, milestones, and glimmers of a future.

Vincent Meessen: Blues Klair

It is an alternative way to read history through colour, ultramarine referring all at once to a pigment, overseas territories, trade, colonial and slave routes.

Rashid Johnson: Anxious Audience

Johnson’s work harnesses the rich symbolism and histories of varied materials that have personal meaning and at times are signifiers of greater African-American cultural identity.

“Impulse” at Harbourfront Centre

As you soar through the air, you’ll activate the light and sound sequences of Impulse; thus becoming the musician and artist of your own artistic creation.

MOCA (Museum of Contemporary Art) Toronto

MOCA Toronto is a museum and art gallery with a mission to “exhibit, research, collect and nurture innovative contemporary art and cultural practices that engage with and address issues and themes relevant to our times.”

Andreas Angelidakis: DEMOS – A Reconstruction

While soft and lightweight, the modules explore powerful ideas around both architectural and colonial legacies as well as our relationship with computer coding and future technologies.

Age of You: An exhibition curated by Shumon Basar, Douglas Coupland and Hans Ulrich Obrist

Age of You” is a timely exhibition about how the self has become more extreme, and what it means to be an individual today.

Shezad Dawood: Leviathan

Project Website:

Leviathan” brings together marine biologists, oceanographers, political scientists, neurologists and trauma specialists to envision a future, which is unnervingly very much like our present, to consider possible links between borders, mental health and marine welfare.