AGYU Fall 2019: The Future Real Conditional

“The power that you create with several voices, it’s a chorus” – Jae Jarrell


This fall, the Art Gallery of York University (AGYU) and the Toronto Biennial of Art (TBA) bring together Caecilia Tripp: Going Space and Other Worlding and Jae Jarrell, two solo exhibitions situated in relation as assemblies of association. The exhibitions open with a free public reception on Wednesday, September 11, 6 – 9 pm and continue through to December 1, 2019.

The future real conditional serves as a framework for AGYU’s fall programming season: a tense of conditional possibility that resides in the realm of imagination. If the future is conditional, then the real in this tense makes what we might do with that future possible. For Black photography scholar Tina M. Campt, the future real conditional “is the power to imagine beyond current fact and to envision that which is not, but must be …”

In the context of our fall exhibitions, this tense of possibility provides us with an opportunity to revisit history with the cosmopolitan agency of that great imagination machine: contemporary art. Or, as Caecilia Tripp puts it: to picture “how collective imagination could help weave a fabric of a dream that has no boundaries.” Weaving fabrics of a future imagined otherwise is also at the heart of Jae Jarrell’s revolutionary project: a merging of art and design with Black liberation politics. She reminds us that “Artists have always been leaders … particularly because they normally present something that has not been presented.”

Going Space and Other Worlding

Working at the intersection of artistic and scientific inquiry, Paris- and New York-based Caecilia Tripp creates immersive film, participatory performance, and sculptural installations that transgress notions of fixed identities and bounded geographies in the service of more ethereal expression: from the depths of earth to the interstellar beyond.

Going Space and Other Worlding is the culmination of two years of research and residencies with AGYU, bringing together recent and commissioned works that poetically engage Martiniquan poet and philosopher Édouard Glissant’s pensée du tremblement: a universe of future-oriented thinking that trembles, shakes, vibrates, and stays multiple.

Caecilia Tripp: Going Space and Other Worlding is curated by Emelie Chhangur and produced through an extended engagement between artist and curator over the past two years. Additional work by Caecilia Tripp is on view at 259 Lake Shore Blvd. E. as part of Toronto Biennial of Art. Visit for details.

Jae Jarrell

Legendary artist and AFRICOBRA co-founder, Jae Jarrell (Cleveland, 1935), made her first Revolutionary Suit in 1969. Constructed of grey tweed, the suit featured a bright yellow suede bandolier stitched along the edge of the jacket. Running from shoulder to hip, the slots of the bandolier are filled with either brightly coloured wooden pegs or pastels: ammunition for creation or for revolution. For Jarrell, the bandolier was not simply a fashion accessory, as she states, “We were saying something when we used the belts. We’re involved in a real revolution.” From the beginning of her practice, Jarrell merged art and design with Black liberation politics.

The exhibition gathers together sculptures, original designs, and archival material spanning nearly fifty years of Jarrell’s radical practice.

Jae Jarrell, curated by Candice Hopkins and Tairone Bastien, is co-presented by AGYU and the Toronto Biennial of Art. Additional work by Jarrell is on view at 259 Lake Shore Blvd. E as part of the Biennial. Visit for details.

Spacing Relation

Commissioned for AGYU Vitrines, this work by filmmaker and recent York University alumni Andrei Pora poses questions regarding how spaces—from domestic rooms to sites of conflict—are contextualized in different realms (real life/virtual), and the role that machines and other entities play in mediating and repurposing our experiences of these spaces. Pora is also a collaborator on Caecilia Tripp’s AGYU/Sharjah Biennial co-commissioned film Even the Stars Look Lonesome (2019), currently on view in Going Space and Other Worlding.

Sounding Relation

Toronto-based artist Mani Mazinani is currently researching the origins of ancient thought, perceptual limitations of humans, and improvisation. This work for AGYU’s Audio Out Listening Bench is set in relation to Caecilia Tripp’s Toronto Biennial of Art-commissioned performance Interstellar Sleep on which Manzinani is collaborating.

For more information on public programming presented this season, please visit:

Caecilia Tripp: Going Space and Other Worlding is presented in partnership with the Toronto branch of the Cultural and Scientific Office of the French Embassy (French Consulate in Toronto) and produced with the support of Institut Français, Paris, France, and the Cultural Services of the Embassy of France in Canada. The presentation of Asteroid (2019) at AGYU is made possible with financial support from Sharjah Foundation and Erna Hecey Gallery, Luxembourg.

The AGYU is located in the Accolade East Building, 4700 Keele Street, Toronto.
Gallery hours: Monday to Friday, 10 am – 4 pm; Wednesday, 10 am – 8 pm; Sunday, noon – 5 pm; and Saturday, closed.

AGYU promotes 2SLGBTQIAP positive spaces & experiences and is barrier free.

Everything is FREE

Directions: TTC: Ride Line 1 to York University Station: the gallery entrance faces the south exit. Driving: Enter YorkU Keele Campus via The Pond Road. Park in the Student Services garage. WheelTrans: the closest WheelTrans stop is York University Subway Station, North Exit.

The Art Gallery of York University (AGYU) is a public, university-affiliated, non-profit contemporary art gallery supported by York University, the Canada Council for the Arts, the Province of Ontario through the Ontario Arts Council, the City of Toronto through the Toronto Arts Council, and by its membership.


For more information or to request images or interviews with the artists, please contact Emelie Chhangur, Interim Director/Curator at

Image: Installation view of Jae Jarrell. Photo: Michael Maranda, AGYU.