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Kosisochukwu Nnebe
I want you to know that I am hiding something from you / since what I might be is uncontainable

Guillermo Trejo
How Thick is a Border?

January 16 — February 23, 2019
Opening Reception: Wednesday, January 16, 7PM — 11PM.
Artists in attendance

Facebook event:

AXENÉO7 is pleased to present two solo exhibitions by Kosisochukwu Nnebe (Ottawa) and Guillermo Trejo (Ottawa).

Concerned with phenomenology, perception and the racialized body, Kosisochukwu Nnebe’s work considers how we perceive each other; to what extent can we really know each other, or even ourselves; and how race is inscribed in the act of perceiving another body.

In this new work Nnebe explores the opposing notions of invisibility and what she describes as “hyper-visibility” or excess. She draws on the writing of Martinique philosopher, writer and poet Édouard Glissant, whose concept of “opacity” offers an alternative to the familiar terrain of identity, visibility and representation. Nnebe’swork considers opacity — a lack of transparency and a way of not giving yourself away completely — as a way to claim agency. Nnebe believes that Glissant’s politics of refusal offer a kind of “refuge”; in withholding a part of herself she refuses to be fully seen, fixed, or racialized in a particular way.

— Anna Khimasia

Kosisochukwu Nnebe is a Nigerian-Canadian visual artist. Using phenomenology (the study of experience) as a methodology, her practice aims to engage viewers on issues of race, gender and power in ways that make them aware of their own complicity through interactive and installation-based pieces. Her work has been exhibited at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, Places des Arts, Station 16 and Z Art Space in Montreal, Studio Sixty Six in Ottawa, the NIA Centre in Toronto, the Art Gallery of Guelph, and the Mohr Gallery in Mountain View, California. She has given presentations on her artistic practice and research at universities across Quebec, including Laval, McGill and Concordia, and has facilitated youth workshops at the Ottawa Art Gallery and Redwood City High School in California. She is currently based in Ottawa.

During his election campaign, US President Donald Trump committed to building a wall between the USA and Mexico. While there already exists a series of walls and fences between the USA and Mexico, Trump’s insistence on a grand physical barrier has reignited discussions about the movement of peoples, both legal and illegal, between these two countries. Most recently, we have seen Trump and his administration separating Mexican, Central American and South American families at the border, placing children into detention camps, and refusing entry to the “migrant caravan” which arrived at the US-Mexico border, seeking asylum.

In How Thick is a Border? (2019) a new installation at AXENÉO7, Mexican-Canadian artist Guillermo Trejo has fabricated his own wall, made from plywood and painted black. His construction not only references the border between Mexico and the USA, but speaks to borders and barriers globally. This installation questions the seemingly arbitrary and often violent ways in which we create, maintain and police borders.

— Anna Khimasia

Guillermo Trejo is a Mexican Artist based in Ottawa. He completed his BFA at the National School of Painting, Sculpture and Engraving in Mexico City with a specialization in printmaking and moved to Canada in 2007. The experience of immigration and distance has shaped Trejo'swork. Since moving to Ottawa, he has earned an MFA from the University of Ottawa and has been an active member of the artistic community. He has exhibited at the Ottawa Art Gallery, Galerie Saw Gallery, and other artist-run centers across the country.

In 2014, he participated in the Québec City Biennial and was shortlisted for the Ottawa RBC Emerging Artist Prize. He has been an Artist-in-Residence at Creative Fusion (Cleveland), and the International Symposium on Contemporary Art of Baie-Saint-Paul. In 2014, Guillermo Trejo also received the Young Artist FONCA (Fondo Nacional para la Cultura y las Artes, Mexico) grant for Mexican Artists and a production grant from the Canada Council for the Arts. In addition,Trejo has worked as a research consultant for the National Gallery of Canada. He also teaches at the Ottawa School of Art (OSA) and directs OSA Editions, a project that invites local artists to create limited edition prints at the OSA print studio.


80, rue Hanson St.
Gatineau, QC
J8Y 3M5

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Photo: Kosisochukwu Nnebe, I want you to know that I am hiding something from you, 2018





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