Short Format is a podcast series created by Aliya Pabani and Angela Shackel for the Toronto Biennial of Art. In expanding dialogues around the inaugural Toronto Biennial of Art, selected artists discussed their practice and processes in a series of short format podcasts and audiograms. Participating artists and collectives included Adrian Blackwell, Ayumi Goto, Caroline Monnet, Diane Borsato, Isuma, Jeneen Frei Njootli, Life of a Craphead, Lisa Steele and Kim Tomczak, Maria Thereza Alves, Syrus Marcus Ware, and Tsēmā Igharas. Click HERE to listen to the “Short Format” podcast series.

Tools for Learning

September 21 – December 1

Bios

Adrian Blackwell (born and lives in Toronto, ON, Canada) is a settler artist, urban designer, theorist, and educator. Blackwell’s practice focuses on the relation between physical spaces and political economic forces. His work has been featured in exhibitions such as: Chicago Architecture Biennial, 2019; Chengdu Biennale, 2011; and Shenzhen Biennale of Urbanism\Architecture, 2005. He is Associate Professor of Architecture at the University of Waterloo and co-editor of the forthcoming issue of SCAPEGOAT: Architecture / Landscape / Political Economy titled “Delineating a Nation State.”

Learn more about Adrian Blackwell’s practice by listening to episode 5 of the Toronto Biennial of Art Podcast “Short Format”, available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, and Spotify.

Aliya Pabani (lives in Toronto, ON, Canada) is an artist and audio producer. She was host/producer of Canadaland’s critically acclaimed arts and culture podcast, The Imposter, and her audio work has appeared on In the Dark Radio, NTS Radio, and BBC’s Short Cuts. She co-created POC in Audio, an online directory of 700+ people of colour in audio from around the world. Her predominantly installation- and performance-based art has been shown at Toronto venues including Images Festival, SummerWorks Performance Festival, Art Metropole, and The Theatre Centre.

Short Format: Series Created & Produced by Aliya Pabani and Angela Shackel

In expanding dialogues around the inaugural Toronto Biennial of Art, selected artists discuss their practice and processes in a series of interviews with journalist Aliya Pabani. Interviewed artists and collectives include Adrian Blackwell, Ayumi Goto, Caroline Monnet, Diane Borsato, Isuma, Jeneen Frei Njootli, Life of a Craphead, Lisa Steele and Kim Tomczak, Maria Thereza Alves, Syrus Marcus Ware, and Tsēmā Igharas.

Angela Shackel (born and lives in Toronto, ON, Canada) is an artist and audio producer who creates audio plays, audio walks, sound installations, and podcasts. She has produced audio works for arts organizations, museums, private galleries, government divisions, colleges, and not-for-profits. Her podcast and radio productions have aired on Canadaland’s The Imposter, NTS Radio, and KCRW’s The Organist. Shackel also has a visual arts practice as part of the collective CCC. Their installation-based works have been shown across Canada and in the United Kingdom.

Ayumi Goto (born in Surrey, BC, Canada; lives in Toronto, ON, Canada) is a performance apprentice, based in Toronto, traditional territories of the Haudenosaunee Confederacy, Huron-Wendat, Anishinaabe, and Mississaugas of the Credit First Nations. As diasporic-Japanese, she at times draws upon her cultural heritage and language to creatively reconsider sentiments surrounding national culturalism, migrations, activist strategies, and land-human relations. Ayumi has made performative interventions in London, Berlin, Kyoto, and across this land presently called Canada. Her practice is deeply influenced by Shirley Bear, Roy Miki, Cheryl L’Hirondelle, Adrian Stimson, and Peter Morin.

Learn more about Ayumi Goto’s practice by listening to episode 4 of the Toronto Biennial of Art Podcast “Short Format”, available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, and Spotify.

A multidisciplinary artist, Caroline Monnet (Algonquin-French, born in Outaouais, QC, Canada; lives in Montreal, QC Canada) studied sociology and communication at the University of Ottawa and the University of Granada before pursuing a career in visual arts and filmmaking. Her work is included in numerous collections such as: Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec, Quebec City; National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa; RBC Royal Bank; and Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal.

Hear Caroline Monnet on episode 1 of the Toronto Biennial of Art Podcast “Short Format”, available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, and Spotify.

Diane Borsato was born in Toronto, where she is an artist, naturalist, and Associate Professor of Experimental Studio at the University of Guelph. She has exhibited and performed her work in major galleries and museums across Canada and internationally. For over ten years she has been collaborating with writer and curator Amish Morrell on Outdoor School, an ongoing series of contemporary environmental artworks. Their new book Outdoor School: Contemporary Environmental Art is available at booksellers now.

Learn more about Diane Borsato’s practice by listening to episode 8 of the Toronto Biennial of Art Podcast “Short Format”, available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, and Spotify.

Artist collective Isuma ᐃᓱᒪ (founded in 1990 by Zacharias Kunuk, Paul Apak Angilirq, and Norman Cohn; based in Igloolik, Nunavut, Canada) is Canada’s first Inuit (75 percent) production company. Known internationally for its award-winning film, Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner (2001), the first feature film ever to be written, directed, and acted entirely in the Inuktitut language, Isuma represented Canada at the 2019 Venice Biennale, the first presentation of art by Inuit in the Canada Pavilion.

Learn more about Isuma’s practice by listening to Zacharias Kunuk on episode 6 of the Toronto Biennial of Art Podcast “Short Format”, available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, and Spotify.

Jeneen Frei Njootli (Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation, born in Whitehorse, YK, Canada; lives in Vancouver, BC, Canada) is a Vuntut Gwitchinartist working with mixed media, sound-based performances, textiles, and installation to explore Indigeneity in politics, community engagement, and history embedded in cultural materials. They were the 2017 recipient of the Contemporary Art Society of Vancouver’s Artist Prize. In 2018 alone they had solo exhibitions in venues such as: Contemporary Art Gallery, Vancouver; FIERMAN, New York City; and Artspace, Peterborough. Their work has appeared in numerous international exhibitions, including the Museum of Contemporary Art Toronto, Canada and Nottingham Contemporary, among others.

Learn more about Jeneen Frei Njootli’s practice and collaboration with Tsēmā Igharas by listening to episode 10 of the Toronto Biennial of Art Podcast “Short Format”, available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, and Spotify.

Life of a Craphead is the collaboration of Amy Lam (born in Hong Kong, China; lives in Toronto, ON, Canada) and Jon McCurley (born and lives in Toronto, ON, Canada). Their work spans performance art, film, and curation, full of humour as a form of empathy towards often troubling histories and present circumstances. Their most recent exhibition, Entertaining Every Second (2019), is centred on a research project about the American war in Vietnam. Other projects include King Edward VII Statue Floating Down the Don River (2017), where they dumped a life-size replica of a colonial statue into a Toronto river on a weekly basis for a month.

Learn more about Life of a Craphead’s practice by listening to episode 9 of the Toronto Biennial of Art Podcast “Short Format”, available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, and Spotify.

Lisa Steele (born in Kansas City, MO, USA; lives in Toronto, ON, Canada) and Kim Tomczak (born in Victoria, BC, Canada; lives in Toronto, ON, Canada) have worked exclusively in collaboration since 1983, producing videotapes, performances, and photo/text works. They have received numerous grants and awards both individually and collaboratively, the latter case including the Bell Canada prize for excellence in Video Art, a Toronto Arts Award, and in 2005, a Governor General’s Award for lifetime achievement in Visual & Media Arts. They were awarded an Honorary Doctorate by the University of British Columbia, Okanagan in 2009.

Learn more about Lisa Steele and Kim Tomczak’s practice by listening to episode 7 of the Toronto Biennial of Art Podcast “Short Format”, available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, and Spotify.

Maria Thereza Alves (born in São Paulo, Brazil; lives in Naples, Italy and Berlin, Germany) has participated in exhibitions including: Manifesta 12, Palermo, 2018; Sharjah Biennial 13, 2016–18; 32nd Bienal de São Paulo, 2016; and dOCUMENTA (13), Kassel, 2012. She is the recipient of The New School’s 2016–18 Vera List Center Prize for Art and Politics. Alves co-founded the Partido Verde of São Paulo in Brazil. As a member of the International Indian Treaty Council, Alves made an official presentation of human rights abuses of the Indigenous population of Brazil at the U.N. Human Rights Commission in Geneva. She is a participant in the Biennale of Sydney, 2020.

Learn more about Maria Thereza Alves’ practice by listening to episode 2 of the Toronto Biennial of Art Podcast “Short Format”, available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, and Spotify.

Syrus Marcus Ware (born in Montreal, QC, Canada; lives in Toronto, ON, Canada) is a Vanier scholar, visual artist, activist, curator, and educator. He uses painting, installation, and performance to explore social justice frameworks and black activist culture, and has shown widely in galleries and festivals across Canada. He is part of the Performance Disability Art Collective and a core team member of Black Lives Matter – Toronto. He has won several recognitions including the TD Arts Diversity Award (2017), Steinert & Ferreiro Award (2012), and “Best Queer Activist” from NOW Magazine (2005).

Learn more about Syrus Marcus Ware’s practice by listening to episode 3 of the Toronto Biennial of Art Podcast “Short Format”, available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, and Spotify.

Ts̱ēmā Igharas (Tahltan First Nation, born in Smithers, BC, Canada; lives in San Francisco, USA) is an award-winning interdisciplinary artist and a member of the Tahltan First Nation. Igharas is influenced by Potlatch methodology, teachings from her mentorship in Northwest Coast Formline Design at K’saan, her studies in visual culture, and time in the mountains. Igharas has shown and performed in various places in Canada and internationally, presenting her work that connects materials to mine sites and bodies to the land.

Learn more about Tsēmā Igharas’ practice and collaboration with Jeneen Frei Njootli by listening to episode 10 of the Toronto Biennial of Art Podcast “Short Format”, available on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, and Spotify.