AKA launches digital project tofeelclose

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Carrie Allison, Eve Tagny and Emii Alrai, Katherine Boyer, Erika DeFreitas, Lindsay Delaronde and Jamie Black, Maggie Groat, Jessica Groome and Tiziana La Melia, Benny Nemerofsky Ramsay, Shellie Zhang

Digital commissions
June to October 2020
Curators: Art Gallery of Regina, Franz Kaka, Paved Arts, Jennifer Smith, Kenderdine and College Galleries with BlackFlash Magazine

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Eve Tagny and Emii Alrai, Adornment, 2020. Still.

tofeelclose launches with a serial project by Eve Tagny and Emii Alrai curated by Franz Kaka.

Eve Tagny and Emii Alrai’s collaboration has the ring of contingency about its origin. A social media algorithm first introduced Eve to Emii’s work, who then initiated a conversation that has now led them to this—and future—projects at the Visual Arts Centre of Clarington. At each subsequent step their burgeoning connection might have broken down, but instead their mutual admiration and generative spirit has sustained and grown this collaboration. The result, an extensive web of conversations that include images, research materials, videos, and texts exceeds what could have been predicted, and its continued expansion feels much like the gardens referenced in their work, overgrown and unwieldy.

Emii Alrai is an artist based in Leeds. Alrai’s practice is informed by inherited nostalgia, geographical identity and post-colonial museum practices of collecting and displaying objects. Focusing on the ancient mythologies from the Middle East alongside personal oral histories of Iraq, Alrai weaves together narratives by forging artefacts and visualising residues of cultural collision.

Eve Tagny is a Montreal based artist. Navigating between writing, photography, video and plant-based installation, she explores themes pertaining to the ever-evolving expressions of hybrid identities. Her practice focuses on mending post-traumatic disruptions in accordance with nature, looking at the correlations between bereavement processes and natural spaces, rhythms and organic materials, which serve as the ultimate guides for pathways of resiliency and renewal.

Franz Kaka is a contemporary art gallery in Toronto, Ontario, presenting project based exhibitions with emerging and mid-career artists. The gallery has gained notoriety as a port for nationally- and internationally-recognized artists interested in experimenting within established practices.


tofeelclose is a space for individual and collective reflection. The project gathers momentum and shape through every voice. Contributors offer unfolding ideas and inquiries, lay bare obsessions, wade through the mundane, stage a place for an encounter. Look for ways to feel close.

Artist commissions will be added biweekly from July to October 2020, thereafter archived.

tofeelclose is curated by Tarin Dehod and organized by Tarin Dehod and Derek Sandbeck of AKA. Design by Carson Sargent.

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AKA is an artist-run centre operating on Treaty Six Land that encompasses the traditional homeland of numerous First Nations, including Cree, Dene, Plains Cree, Nakota, Saulteaux, and Ojibwe, and the homeland of the Métis Nation.

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