Gallery 101 is excited to present Speaking Fruit - a mobile roadside fruit-stand that feeds the movement for migrant farmworker rights. Conceived by artist Farrah Miranda, the project began with a single question posed to migrant farmworkers in Southern Ontario. It asked: “If the fruit you grow could speak from dinner tables, refrigerators and grocery aisles, what would you want it to say?”
With colorful produce, a virtual screen and lively soundscape, the roving fruit-stand convenes events and actions that share strategies and build alliances between movements for food, racial and labour justice. Visitors to the fruit-stand can take a 6-minute trip to a vineyard in the Niagara-region where they can witness the dance of a group of workers and listen to their music. The dance is about their relationship to the land and to each other.
Drawing on curatorial strategies, Miranda invited artists, academics and community organizers Evelyn Encalada & Gabriel Allahdua (Justice for Migrant Farmworkers), Heryka Miranda (choreographer), Angel, Gabriel, Eliasar, Eustacio, Jeremias, Juan (performers, musicians, migrant workers), Luca Lucarini (filmmaker), Lal & Ruben Esguerra (sound design), Ryan Hayes (graphic designer / printmaker), and Craig Fortier (principal investigator).
This weekend Speaking Fruit will be making appearances at Mino’Weesini by Parkdale Food Centre, and the Migrant Rights Network’s rally for Rights, Regularization, and Status for All. This portion of the Speaking Fruit tour will end at Gallery 101 on Monday with a conversation between Farrah Miranda and curator Amin Alsaden.
Join us to hear what the fruits, and those who cultivate them, have to say.
Saturday September 17: Mino'Weesini by Parkdale Food Center
5 Hamilton Ave North, 3:00-6:00 PM
Come out on Saturday to experience Speaking Fruit outside of Mino'Weesini by Parkdale Food Centre. Everyone in the community is invited to experience the work and to hear Gabriel Allahdua speak.
Gabriel Allahdua is a former migrant farm worker and now an organizer with the collective Justice for Migrant Workers, an outreach worker with The Neighbourhood Organization and most recently Activist in Residence at the University of Guelph.
Sunday September 18: Rights, Regularization, and Status for All Rally
Confederation Park (Elgin St), 2:00-4:00 PM
On Sunday September 18, G101 and Speaking Fruit will be taking part in a national mobilization for Rights, Regularization, and Status for All. We will be joining Documenting the Undocumented, Migrante Ottawa, Migrants Rights Network, AnakBayan Ottawa, Community Solidarity Ottawa, Child Care Now (Ottawa) and thousands across the country to demand equal rights and permanent resident status for all undocumented people, migrant workers, students, families, and refugees.
2 PM: Gather at Confederation Park. Visit Speaking Fruit and hear speeches from organizers of migrant rights groups, including Farrah’s collaborator Gabriel Allahdua representing Justice for Migrant Workers.
3:15 March to Parliament for chants and speeches from migrant workers
4:00 Return to Confederation Park for a community picnic
Speaking Fruit will set up at the park and be available to visit during the entire rally.
Monday September 19: In Conversation: Amin Alsaden with Farrah Miranda
Gallery 101 (280 Catherine St), 6:00 PM
Masks are required.
Join us Monday evening for an in person conversation between artist Farrah Miranda and curator Amin Alsaden. Their dialogue will revolve around Miranda’s work presented at Gallery 101, expanding on how the artist began her research into food production and worker’s rights, the personal resonance of these questions, and the larger societal implications of supporting migrant and precarious labor, particularly given the impending crisis of food scarcity on local and global levels. Miranda and Alsaden will also touch upon broader themes in the artist’s practice, including a long term commitment to activism and community engagement, and probing the histories and agonies of migrations.
Farrah Miranda is a multidisciplinary artist whose practice spans performance, installation, sculpture, new media and poetry. Her work focuses on the pedagogical possibilities of art in undoing colonial and capitalist borders and citizenships. She is known for her participatory large-scale public interventions, which engage a broad array of artists, activists and community groups to shed light on immigration policies, and temporary labor, among other pressing issues.
Amin Alsaden is a curator, educator, and scholar of art and architecture, whose work focuses on transnational solidarities and exchanges across cultural boundaries. With a commitment to advancing social justice through the arts, Alsaden’s curatorial practice contributes to the dissemination of more diverse, inclusive, and global narratives, by decentering and expanding existing canons, and challenging hegemonic knowledge and power structures. He is particularly interested in how artists and architects interrogate collective agency in the public realm and level institutional critique, while envisioning novel visual and spatial responses to the experiences of alienation and belonging.
Farrah Miranda would like to acknowledge funding support from the Ontario Arts Council, an agency of the Government of Ontario.
Gallery 101 thanks the Ottawa Community Foundation for their support.