Manna’s work draws formal inspiration from khabyas, traditional seed storage vessels that were a key feature of rural Levantine architecture, paired with metal structures used in industrial storage systems. These seed chambers were built directly into the interior of homes as a means of preserving grains for sowing and annual consumption. In many ways, these vessels were predecessors to refrigerators. Manna’s clay sculptures, Cache (Insurance Policy), play explicitly with this notion, featuring gridded structures found in other kinds of climate- controlled industrial storage systems, such as seed banks. The vessels extend the artist’s insightful explorations into the transformation of systems of sustenance and knowledge from practices of survival to centralized economies of capital growth.

Commissioned in part by the Toronto Biennial of Art.

Bio

Jumana Manna (born in Princeton, NJ, USA; lives in Berlin, Germany) is a Palestinian artist whose work shifts between sculpture and film, body and land, narrative and form. Her practice explores how power is articulated through relationships, often focusing on the body and materiality in relation to narratives of nationalism and histories of place. Manna is a graduate of CalArts, Valencia and Oslo National Academy of the Arts.

Exhibition Site

Small Arms Inspection Building

Small Arms Inspection Building was originally part of a large munitions plant built in 1940 before it was acquired and renovated as an art centre by the City of Mississauga in 2018. With its female dominated workforce, Small Arms Limited manufactured thousands of rifles daily for the Canadian and Allied forces in WWII. In 1990, the TRCA conducted an environmental audit of the site, revealing the presence of polychlorinated biphenyl, volatile organic compounds, and combustible gases across nineteen acres. More than 70,000 tons of contaminated radioactive soil was removed to eventually transform the Arsenal Lands into a park.

1352 Lakeshore Road East
Mississauga ON
L5E 1E9