Joshua Vettivelu Residency & Exhibition
Research and Creation Residency
Research: March 15 – April 19
Exhibition: April 26 – May 24
Joshua Vettivelu will be undertaking a research and creation residency, using the tensile strength of wet sand to explore the ways in which bodies are received from water.
The project will specifically look into the 155 Tamil migrants that fled the start of the civil war in Sri Lanka to arrive in St. John’s in 1985 contrasted with the reception of the MV Sunsea, which brought 492 Tamils to British Columbia, fleeing the height of the Tamil genocide. The Canadian reception of these two boats differed immensely and will be used as the parameters to look into the ways myths about resource scarcity have been used to enforce political borders as a limit of empathy.
The gallery installation will be comprised of boat forms made out of sand that will fall apart unless tended to. These forms will be informed by interviews with Newfoundlanders involved in the rescue and local expert advice from local boat builders.
Joshua Vettivelu is an artist, programmer, and educator working within sculpture, video, installation and performance. Their works explore how larger frameworks of power manifest within intimate relationships. Recently their practice has been looking at how desire and language build the world. Currently, Vettivelu is an instructor in the faculty of Art and Faculty of Continuing Education at OCADU and is the previous Director of Programming of Whippersnapper Gallery.