Proof 29: Holly Chang, Neeko Paluzzi, Christina Oyawale

Christina Oyawale, The sun no longer sets at 9pm, 11 x 17 inch, 2021

Gallery 44 Centre for Contemporary Photography

Proof 29
Holly Chang, Neeko Paluzzi, Christina Oyawale

Exhibition Dates: June 9 – July 8, 2023
Artist Walkthrough: June 9, 2023, 5:00PM
Opening Reception: June 9, 2023, 6:00PM

Proof is Gallery 44’s annual group exhibition of work by emerging Canadian artists, reflecting a range of current concerns and practices in contemporary photography and lens-based media. Proof is often one of the first exhibitions in a professional context for an emerging artist. Past exhibitions have featured work by Kotama Bouabane, Leila Fatemi, Isabelle Hayeur, Anique Jordan, Laurie Kang, Germaine Koh, Luther Konadu, Meryl McMaster, Karice Mitchell, Elise Rasmussen and Althea Thauberger.

“In Proof 29, artists Holly Chang, Christina Oyawale and Neeko Paluzzi present installations that place their photographic practices within expanded spatial and material contexts, as their work moves from intimate specificity into the sphere of collective meaning-making. These openings correlate also to the artists’ shared investment in the open-ended, the non-linear and the indeterminate…[The artists] deeply implicate themselves within their image-making methods, through ambient conditions of feeling, meditations on personal circumstance and veiled performance. In Proof 29, they allow us to join their working-through, offering the open invitation of the perpetually unresolved.” – excerpt from process/processing

This year’s Proof exhibition includes process/processing, an essay by Talia Golland. Download the exhibition catalogue.

Join us at Gallery 44 on June 9 at 5:00 PM for an in-person artist walkthrough of Proof 29, artists will be in attendance. Visit the registration page.

Images (left to right): Neeko Palluzi, Tales of Hoffmann, single channel deep-fake digital video in custom wood structure, 2020-22. Holly Chang, Mom, chromogenic print, 16 x 20 inch, 2022.

Holly Chang is an artist and curator living in Toronto who has completed her MA in Communication and Culture at TMU/York University. Her overall artistic work explores the themes of her second-generation identity as a mixed-race person; she explores her cross-cultural identity and draws on her hybrid background for inspiration. In her practice, she incorporates photography, archives, ceramics, textiles, and collage. Chang identifies as a queer artist, and she further relates the experiences of being queer to her mixed-race identity.

Neeko Paluzzi (he/him) holds two master’s degrees from the University of Ottawa: a Master of Fine Arts (2022) and a Master of Film Studies (2013). In addition, he is a graduate of the Photographic Arts and Production program at the School of the Photographic Arts: Ottawa (2017). He was the recipient of the Karsh Continuum Photography Award from the City of Ottawa in 2021, had a feature exhibition at the Scotiabank CONTACT Festival in 2019 and was the winner of the 2018 Project X, Photography Grant from the Ottawa Arts Council. Paluzzi currently teaches English at the Official Languages and Bilingualism Institute.

Christina Oyawale (they/them) is a Black non-binary disabled lens-based Tkaronto artist, curator and designer. They hold a BFA in Photography and minor in Music and Cultural Studies from Toronto Metropolitan University. Their artistic practice is based in documenting the radical occupation of space, influenced by their interests in disability studies and aesthetics. They approach their practice as a means of exploring the ways in which identity and culture are both represented and embodied in our society and how it intersects with other social categories like gender, race and sexuality.

Azia Jonelle, Justin F, inkjet print, 2022

Bahay Kubo
Azia Jonelle

Exhibition Dates: June 9 – July 8, 2023
Opening Reception: June 9, 2023, 6:00PM

The Verant Richards Award is awarded annually to an OCADU graduating student for excellence in experimental photography. Verant Richards was a graduate of OCADU and a founding member of Gallery 44, known for his innovative artistic practice that pushed beyond the confines of a self-limiting definition of photography.

The Filipino pre-colonial home, Bahay Kubo, has endured many periods of colonization in the Philippines. This form of the home has become the embodiment of resilience in Filipinx culture. Through documenting the current homes of Filipino-Canadians Jonelle gains an understanding of how Filipinx, as a dispersed community, dissect a new meaning of “home” and how the community occupies space.

As a second-generation Filipino-Canadian, Azia Jonelle’s reconciling connections to her heritage serves as a love letter to her inner child. Growing up with a handful of Filipino families in her neighbourhood made it difficult to feel immersed in her culture. The nature of this project has allowed Jonelle to create relationships with others who share her experiences, creating safe spaces to begin healing.

Azia Jonelle recently completed her studies at OCAD University, earning a BFA in Photography. Primarily working as a lens-based artist, she often experiments with other disciplines such as textile, sculpture and installation. Her artistic practice is informed by emphasizing the intimacy of relationships (ie. platonic, familial, romantic). In more recent projects, she draws on memories of tradition and culture to create connections to her heritage.

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Gallery 44 Centre for Contemporary Photography is an artist-run centre committed to supporting diverse approaches to photographic and image-based practices through exhibitions, education programs and facilitating artistic production. Gallery 44 provides space and context for meaningful dialogue between artists and publics. Together, we offer an entry point to explore the artistic, cultural, historic, social and political implications of the image in our ever-expanding visual world.

Gallery 44 Centre for Contemporary Photography
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Toronto, Ontario M5V 3A8
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Maegan Broadhurst
Head of Communications and Development