The May 26 2023

What to shed, what to carry

Amanda Preval, Joliz Dela Peña and Nana Quinn

May 26, from 6 to 8:30pm

What to shed, what to carry is a performance presented by Amanda Préval, Joliz Dela Peña and Nana Quinn. In this piece, the artists aim to explore the emotional and cultural relationships each upholds with their hair. The performance is composed of three loosely defined acts which follow the life cycle of a strand of hair. The performance plunges us into the depths of an intimate experience in which hair transforms from  simple organic tissue into  a beacon of hope for harmony between identity, the body and the collective consciousness. The viewer is invited to immerse themselves in the intimate experiences of the artists. 

Artists' biographies

Amanda Préval is a Haitian Canadian multidisciplinary artist based in Longueuil on the unceded lands of Karonhiatsi'kowáhne. They make wearable sculptures and abstract installations using synthetic hair extensions. The performativity of the body in the workplace, mass production, and clothing are central to their research. Their work also relates to the complexity of visible black bodies in society. Préval defines the body as a conceptual ground raising issues relating to a sense of belonging and to questions of gender identity.

Joliz Dela Peña, also known as JDP 2009, is a self-taught interdisciplinary artist from the Philippines, currently based in Tiohtià: ke. Intimate connection to memories, identity, and immigration are recurring themes in Dela Pena’s practice. Through performance accompanied by installations, she pursues to relive realities, explore its complexities, and translate invisible tension/s into various visual and tactile qualities. In recent works, she attempts to translate fragmented memories from her personal life as first-generation immigrant, as well as borrowed from others, to create a larger and more universal perspective for the audience to relate or connect to. Dela Peña’s work has been exhibited at WIP gallery (The ‘i’ Word, 2020), Rad Hourani Foundation (Je suis d’ici/I am from here, 2021), the 4th edition of Artch (2021). And recently in the 14th edition of Art Souterrain Festival: Voies/Voix Résilientes (2022).

Nana Quinn is a multi-disciplinary artist lost somewhere on Highway 20. Their most recent research in visual and literary arts focuses on relational practices, extimacy and poetry as a sensitive relationship to the world. Through publication, exhibition and ephemeral, usually participatory, projects, the artist explores vulnerability in order to make visible the inner tensions that are related to the multiple facets of human existence. Nana Quinn is the winner of the 2020 CBC Poetry Prize. Mauve est un verbe pour ma gorge, published by Poètes de brousse, is their first book.