Feb 17 – May 14, 2022
Sovereignty is Mi’gmaq photographer and mask-maker Duane Isaac’s first solo exhibition in Vancouver. The portrait series documents a body in nature outfitted with a fantastical mask—one side overgrown with fledgling greenery while the other half conjures a ghost of the human face hidden beneath—who succumbs to increasingly foreboding flames, mask first. Motivated by the health and survival of Indigenous bodies and Indigenous Lands, Isaac casts his model as a vessel of sovereignty under threat; “Sovereignty explores the questions of autonomy and health of both body and Land. The health of the Land will reflect the health of the body and the health of the body will reflect the health of the Land. One cannot survive without the other.” The figure’s mask embodies this dualism, representing Indigenous identity as equal to and inseparable from the Land.
Duane Isaac is a First Nation Mi’gmaq from Listuguj, QC. He is a contemporary artist who uses the photography medium in combination with his mask making. His work has been featured in multiple online publications, most recently Canadian Art Magazine. He currently resides in Listuguj, QC.
Curated by SUM gallery founding artistic director emeritus SD Holman, this exhibition is part of the 2022 Capture Photography Festival Selected Exhibition Program.
Opening reception details TBC pending COVID-19 regulations. Visits to the gallery are currently by appointment only. Check back for updates.