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Sur Gallery presents STANCE: Design Against Fascism in partnership with Mayworks Festival of Working People and the Arts


Opening Reception: Thursday, May 3, 2018 7-10PM, Sur Gallery
Exhibition: May 1 to June 16, 2018, Sur Gallery

STANCE: Design Against Fascism Talk: Saturday, May 5, 1-3PM @ Sur Gallery
Educator and designer, Sheila Sampath in conversation with curator Rodrigo Barreda and participating designers, explore the curatorial vision, the theoretical issues, and the processes in conceiving and creating the exhibition.

The Possible Role of Design & Designers: Wednesday, May 30, 6:30-8:30PM @ OCAD U Auditorium
Rodrigo Barreda in conversation with two of Toronto’s most influential design leaders – Dean of the Centre for Arts, Design & Information Technology at George Brown College, Luigi Ferrara along the Dean of Design at OCADU, Dori Tunstall – look at the role design and designers play within the current political and economic context.

About the Exhibition

Nine Toronto-based artists and designers—working with themes relevant to marginalized and under-represented communities in Canada—reinterpret the 1973 Chilean poster art exhibition Por la Vida...Siempre! (For Life...Always!). The exhibition explores intersections of contemporary social issues and the resurgence of fascist tactics within a Canadian context as well as exposes the original Por la Vida...Siempre! posters.

STANCE: Design Against Fascism, brings current societal challenges such as polarization, radicalization, the rise of white nationalism and fascist tactics to the foreground. It creates a space for an audience to question how far we have truly advanced from the ideological dogmas of the past and how they continue to shape our current political, social and economic realities.

About the Artists

AURA Haudenosaunee (Oneida) artist, currently based in Tkaronto. She graduated from the University of Lethbridge with a BFA (Studio Art) and is a DTATI Candidate. Through her art practice, Aura uses mixed media, beadwork, street art, art as healing workshops, and digital Illustration to discuss intergenerational healing, identity, empowerment, and mothering. She looks to community to collectively explore personal storytelling and truth-sharing.

KAIATANORON DUMOULIN BUSH is a Mohawk/French- Canadian interdisciplinary artist from Montréal. Currently studying Indigenous Visual Culture at OCAD University and completed diplomas in Fine Arts and Illustration & Design. Professionally, she works in partnership with clients who seek to enrich Indigenous communities and empower Indigenous youth while her personal works grapple sexuality, violence, and identity.

VANESSA ECKSTEIN’s clients include global brands such as Nike, Pepsi, and the Museum of Modern Art Miami, among many others. Vanessa’s work has been exhibited in countries from Japan to Germany, most recently at the Bienal Iberamericanna de Diseño, Spain and is represented in the permanent collection of the Royal Ontario Museum as well as the Library of Congress, Washington. Vanessa holds an MFA from the Art Centre of Pasadena.

COCO GUZMAN received a degree in Comparative Literature from Paris VIII University, and pursued a degree in Art in Toulouse. Guzmán’s work has been exhibited in the Americas, Europe, South Korea and Australia. In 2013, Guzmán and Paulie McDermid co-founded Collectivo Pez Luna/ Moonfish Collective, where they explore the intersections of poetry, queerness, theatre and drawing. Guzmán is currently pursuing an MFA at OCADU in Toronto.

CHIEF LADY BIRD is a Chippewa and Potawatomi artist from Rama First Nation and Moosedeer Point First Nation, currently based in Toronto. She graduated from OCAD University with a BFA in Drawing and Painting and a minor in Indigenous Visual Culture. Chief Lady Bird uses street art, community-based workshops, digital illustration and mixed media work to challenge the lens that Indigenous people are often viewed through.

LARA LUCRETIA is a Toronto-based illustrator, gardener, educator and printmaker. Skill-sharing, collaboration and community engagement is central to her art practice and gardens. Lara’s studio, Jakarundi Graphics, produces anti-copyright imagery with political messaging - largely influenced by long-time work with Beehive Design Collective. Lara co-founded Upwards Art Collective and created An Illustrated Guide To Growing Food On Your Balcony.

FIDEL PEÑA is a graphic designer, creative director and the co-founder of Underline Studio. Underline develops branding, print and digital projects for a number of commercial clients, including Google, the University of Toronto and the National Gallery of Canada, as well as self-initiated projects that deal with humanitarian and political issues. His work has received numerous accolades from across Canada, the US and Europe.

NOËL NANTON founded typotherapy, a boutique graphic design studio in 2002. With more than two decades of experience, Noël has worked on many projects from such diverse sectors as architecture, arts and entertainment, education, fashion, financial services, government, health and medical, not-for-profit and retail. His unparalleled, award-winning graphic design and typography have been documented in many design anthologies around the world.

SETAREH SHAMDANI Designer & Strategist Setareh is a hybrid designer who explores the intersection of art, design, engineering, technology and business, all while maintaining a focus on inclusion and accessibility. As a civically minded tech enthusiast, she envisions new products and services by drawing a delicate balance between honouring her values and what is made possible with new technology.

About the Curator

RODRIGO BARREDA is a Toronto-based designer, and curator with over 25 years experience primarily working in the not-for-profit sector. He is a graduate of Advertising Art Direction from the Ontario College of Art & Design. His work has focused on the study and implementation of projects that address design for social services and social change. Barreda is currently Manager of Graphic Design at United Way Greater Toronto and Education Programming Director at Sur Gallery.

For further information or press inquiries please contact us at:

Gallery Hours:
Tues & Wed 10AM-2:30PM
Thurs & Fri noon-6PM
Sat 11AM-5PM

Location: Sur Gallery, 100-39 Queens Quay East, Toronto


Sur Gallery acknowledges the financial support of the Ontario Trillium Foundation, Ontario Arts Council, Canada Council for the Arts and The City of Toronto through section 37. Sur Gallery acknowledges its co-presenter Mayworks Festival of Working People and the Arts as well as our partners OCADU and George Brown College. Sur Gallery also acknowledges the generous contributions of Mario Navarro, Roberto Cortez, Museo de la Memoria y los Derechos Humanos, Archivo Patrimonial de la Universidad de Santiago de Chile and Colectivo Diseñadores Gráficos de la Universidad Técnica del Estado Chile.





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