Sur Gallery opens Fall 2023 with Diaspora Dialogues: Archiving the Familiar


October 4 – December 2, 2023

Opening Reception:
Wednesday, October 4, 7-9pm
Register here.

Curator Tour with Sarah Shamash:
Saturday, October 7, noon-1pm
Register here.

Women & Art: Political Praxes of Memory
Virtual Screening of Video Art: Chile and Brazil of the 1970s-80s
October 21 to November 4, 2023

Artist Talk with Amanda Gutiérrez and Gabriela Aceves Sepúlveda:
Thursday, October 19, 7-8pm
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Latin American Speakers Series: Presentation by Claudia Calirman
Feminist or Feminine?
Thursday, October 26, 7-9pm
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Artist Talk with Cecilia Araneda, Rosalina Libertad Cerritos, and Soledad Muñoz:
Thursday, November 9, 7-8pm
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Curator Tour with Tamara Toledo:
Saturday, November 25, 1-2pm
Register here.


The contested terrain of both the terms “archive” and “diaspora” requires deeper consideration since this exhibition asks what the meaning is behind making these two terms form a dialogue with one another. Diaspora Dialogues: Archiving the Familiar features work by women artists Gabriela Aceves Sepúlveda, Cecilia Araneda, Soledad Fátima Muñoz, Amanda Gutiérrez, and Rosalina Libertad Cerritos all of which are from the Latin American diaspora and apply a variety of critical and aesthetic approaches to the archive. The exhibition will also be in dialogue with a virtual screening of video art by women artists from the 70s and 80s hosted on VIVO Media Arts Centre website entitled Women & Art: Political Praxes of Memory. This dialogue established between Latin American video artist pioneers from Brazil and Chile foregrounds the diaspora’s relationship with “original” culture, “copy”, and “archive”.

The syncretic nature of diaspora peoples and cultures, the doubling of places, the passages, and slippages between past and present, here and there, mother tongues and adopted tongues, all foreground the fluidity and porousness of diaspora identities and ways of being as dialogic. This exhibition engages with (dis)articulations of the archive as syncretic through formal and conceptual experimentations of master codes and narratives. Diaspora Dialogues interrupt racist nationalism and border enforcement ideologies by making visible histories of violence and interventionism in the Global South all of which have created the conditions for being in diaspora in the settler-nation-state, on stolen Indigenous lands, known as Canada.

Diaspora Dialogues: Archiving the Familiar ultimately produces a curatorial archive that aims to generate further dialogue on the significant contributions, knowledge production, and archival safeguarding of diaspora communities within and despite the nation state. The exhibition creates dialogic mediations between the artists, their communities, and their histories. The archive is gendered, racialized, and political; these artists are agents telling and safeguarding their own diasporic histories through the language of media art.

Co-curated by Sarah Shamash and Tamara Toledo

This exhibition is financially supported by the Toronto Friends of the Visual Arts, and the virtual screening of its program is in partnership with VIVO Media Arts Centre.

Gabriela Aceves Sepúlveda, Reactivating Mamá Pina’s Cookbook, 2014-2017


Cecilia Araneda is a Winnipeg-based Chilean Canadian filmmaker and curator. Her works have screened at venues such as Visions du Reél, Ann Arbor, Images, RIDM, Documenta Madrid, Festival Internacional del Nuevo Cine Latinoamericano, Bienal de la Imagen en Movimiento, TIFF Wavelengths, Film Anthology Archives, and Maysles Documentary Center. Araneda’s debut feature film, INTERSECTION was released in the fall of 2022. Araneda holds a BFA from York University, an MFA from the University of British Columbia, and is additionally a three-time alumna of Film Farm.

Gabriela Aceves Sepúlveda was born in Guadalajara, Mexico and is a media artist and cultural historian with a research focus on feminist media art, research-creation and Latin American art and its diasporas. She is Associate Professor in the School of Interactive Arts and Technology at Simon Fraser University (SIAT). Aceves Sepúlveda is a member of art/mamas, a Vancouver-based collective of artist mothers and sono(soro)ridades, a group of feminist sound artists, activists, and scholars investigating the affective and political dimensions of sound.

Soledad Fátima Muñoz is an interdisciplinary artist, cultural worker, and researcher born in Canada and raised in Chile. Muñoz studied Film at Universidad ARCIS in Santiago, Chile, she has a Diploma in Textile Arts from Capilano University in North Vancouver Canada, a BFA from Emily Carr University of Arts + Design, and an MFA from the Department of Fiber and Material Studies of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Muñoz is the recipient of various awards such as the City of Vancouver Mayor’s Arts Award for Emerging Artist and The School of the Art Institute of Chicago New Artist Society Full Merit Scholarship.

Amanda Gutiérrez was born in Mexico City and is currently based in Montreal. Gutiérrez completed her MFA in Media and Performance Studies at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and is currently a Ph.D. candidate in Arts and Humanities at Concordia University in the Arts and Humanities Doctoral program. Art residencies include FACT, Liverpool in the UK, ZKM in Germany, TAV in Taiwan, Bolit Art Center in Spain. Gutiérrez has exhibited at The Liverpool Biennale in 2012, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, Harvestworks in NYC, SBC Gallery and Undefined Radio in Montreal, and Errant Bodies Studio Press in Berlin.

Rosalina Libertad Cerritos was born in Mexico City, her parents are from El Salvador, and she grew up in the Canadian West Coast. Her practice is multidimensional and multi-sensorial. In her work she explores and imagines new narratives and new futures through a process and exercise of reconstruction, reconciliation and reconnection to her memories and history. She works and lives in the unceded, traditional, and ancestral territories of the Coast Salish people, that includes the Squamish, Musqueam and Tsleil-Waututh nations.


Sarah Shamash is an Assistant Professor of Critical and Cultural Studies at Emily Carr University of Art and Design. Her work as a media artist has been supported by arts council funding and comprises a wide variety of formats; her works have shown in curated exhibitions and film festivals internationally. Shamash’s most recent documentary project, From Chile to Canada: Media Herstories premiered at the Vancouver International Film Festival (2022) and is currently showing in festivals internationally. Her scholarly research examines Latin American and diaspora film and media cultures with a focus on Brazil.

Tamara Toledo is a curator, scholar, and artist based in Toronto. She is a graduate of OCAD University, with an MFA from York University, and is currently a PhD candidate in Art History and Visual Culture. Her scholarly and curatorial research focuses on hemispheric connections, decolonial methodologies and practices, diasporic histories, and the legacies of the Cold war era in contemporary art. Published by ARM Journal, C Magazine, Fuse, Canadian Art, and Latin American and Latinx Visual Culture Journal of the University of California, Toledo has participated in various conferences and symposiums across Canada, the United States, and Mexico. Toledo is currently the Director/Curator of Sur Gallery.

Sur Gallery is Toronto’s first gallery space dedicated to the exhibition and critical engagement of contemporary Latin American art and is a project of LACAP.

For information contact:
Facebook @LACAParts
YouTube @lacapcanada

Gallery Hours:
Wednesday to Friday: Noon – 6pm
Saturday: 11pm – 5pm

100-39 Queens Quay East
Toronto, ON

Sur Gallery acknowledges the financial support of the Canada Council for the Arts; Ontario Arts Council; Toronto Arts Council; The City of Toronto through section 37; and the Toronto Friends of the Visual Arts. Sur Gallery also acknowledges its sponsors Ready2Post; See Through Web; and Hoffworks Productions; as well as its partner VIVO Media Art Centre and community partner aluCine Latin Film + Media Arts Festival.