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Dream Time: We All Have Stories curated by Karen Alexanderan initial aversion to the plight of the sufferer (Pietà), 2015–continuing

an initial aversion to the plight of the sufferer (Pieta), 2015–continuing
Photo: nichola feldman-kiss

nichola feldman-kiss - Toronto, Canada

In a direct reference to historical representations of Mary cradling the body of Christ, an initial aversion to the plight of the sufferer, (Pietà) is a series of larger than life-sized portraits which challenge dominant representations of Black and Brown male bodies by exploring alternative ideas of tenderness and vulnerability.

Pietà is an ongoing meditation on masculinity, race and humanity. The compositions juxtapose living flesh against a human skeleton, which is approximately the same age as the men who carry it, creating a work of tension and pathos. In this reconfiguration of a universally known icon, aspects of the spiritual are mixed with the macabre, and a quiet reverence meets a hint of danger. By holding the anonymous skeleton, the group powerfully presents images of what it means to care. The portraits subtly evoke a sense of the rituals associated with loss, recovery and recollection. feldman-kiss’ work examines not only recent issues of Black male genocide, global terrorism and Black Lives Matter, but also prompts the viewer to embark on journeys of recognition and association which transcend both time and context.

Pietà is purposefully exhibited in a semi-enclosed rooftop zone to invite a momentary pause for personal meditation and public reflection.

nichola feldman-kiss is a socially engaged artist. She works across installation, video, performance and sculpture to raise subversive questions about the body, race and traumatic global violence. Throughout her multidisciplinary practice, she harnesses technological innovations to explore urgent ideas of the individual’s relationship to the collective. feldman-kiss has exhibited her work both nationally and internationally, most recently at the 2017 Jamaica Biennial. She works and resides in Toronto.

Photography Installation


STYLL We All Have Stories The things they carried Major Institutions Independent Projects Experiential Activations Event Centre

City Hall - Podium Roof

77 Elizabeth Street (Access the project from the stairs up to the podium roof from Elizabeth and Hagerman Streets)

Suitable for all ages

This project is outdoors.