Ecologies & Cosmologies

Co-presented by Trinity Square Video & Lakeshore Arts

A multisite exhibition across Toronto featuring works by Sidi Chen, Jenna Reid + Cassandra Myers, Laura Margaret Ramsey, Shonee, Sarah Holloway, and Maria Simmons.

Co-presented by Trinity Square Video, Lakeshore Arts, Whippersnapper Gallery, Critical Distance Centre for Curators, SpaceMakerII, Art Metropole, and Scarborough Arts.

Ecologies & Cosmologies presents Trinity Square Video’s 2022 Themed Commissions, which were produced over a summer residency. This year’s theme invites projects that explore and critique different forms of interdependency, networks of life, and destabilize fixed entities/identities/borders through technological, ecological or cosmological metaphors. 

The selected projects explore various topics, including; networks of care; spiritual, physical and digital connections in human and nonhuman relationships; environmental speculative fiction; and deconstructing trauma through ecological metaphors; 

In reference to the theme of interconnectedness, the selected projects take place in different venues across Tkaronto, culminating in a constellation of public-facing spaces, inextricably linked to the structure of the city and bringing together a number of local artist-run communities.

Current Onsite Projects

Compass of the Tides by Sidi Chen

Compass of the Tides is a site-specific project that inquires about the relationship between bodies that are human, ecological, and planetary. Through recorded performances related to the tidal schedule, this project researches spiritual and physical connections between the shoreline ecologies of Lake Ontario, the moon phases, and community developments along the tidal zones. For Chen, the tides are not only the embodiment of celestial forces and rotations, but also create an ecology of fluidity and border-crossing. From the perspective of a queer diaspora artist from China, this project implements the traditional knowledge of the lunar calendar, solar terms, and the Constellations of Four Directions, as well as and Taoist philosophies of the mutual harmonization and restriction of energies to seek the tidal network and how it mediates an Earthly kinship between climate change, galactical movement, and human future.

Body All Pearls by Jenna Reid & Cassandra Myers

Body All Pearls is a documented performance and multimedia installation that explores disabled bodies within larger ecologies using poetry, dance, and textiles. Disabled bodies are often depicted as existing in profound isolation. Amidst realities of solitude, our communities are necessarily built through the revolutionary possibilities of interdependence. We use an interdisciplinary approach to explore the ecologies that grow out of our mad and disabled bodies. Born out of their roots in political organizing, Myers and Reid connect this work to the histories of mad and disability communities – rich but often overlooked rhizomatic spaces. 

Upcoming Event

Resisting Endurance Culture Through Self Massage for Survivors and Friends
Workshop by Cassandra Myers
Thursday August 25, 7-8pm

This trauma-informed, survivor centric workshop will encourage people who have tendencies towards a freeze response to muscularly release deep and surface level tension using everyday items and self touch.

Mats will be provided for participants to sit comfortably on the floor, however, if you would prefer to bring your own mat or blanket, you are welcome. Participants are also encouraged to bring a massage oil of their preference.

Max: 10 Participants*

*While there are no requirements for joining this workshop, we will be prioritizing those who self-identify as a trauma-survivor.

Meet the Artists

Sidi Chen is a traveling queer artist whose practice addresses the intersectionality of the body, community space, and the land. For the creative process, Chen empathizes the body as a unit of measurement, a vessel of relationships, a repository of experience, and an instrument for creativity. Through his interdisciplinary research crossing arts to science and social movements, Chen’s interested in how the embodied experience informs the relations and agencies of the bodies that are human, ecological, and planetary.

Sidi Chen is currently studying in the Master of Fine Arts Program at Emily Carr University of Art + Design). Chen has participated in a wide range of residencies, exhibitions, and performances in North America. He is currently working as a practicing artist, an independent arts administrator, and a community worker on the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territories of the xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), and Səl̓ílwətaʔ/Selilwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh) First Nations, known as Vancouver, BC.

Jenna Reid (left image) is the current Artistic Director at Kickstart Disability Arts & Culture, and the board president of the Contemporary Textile Studio Co-operative. Jenna is a fibre artist who works primarily with the practices of quilting, natural dyes, and protest art as a way to engage with activist based aesthetics. Jenna has completed residencies on Toronto Island with the Feminist Art Conference, at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity, and has exhibited her work and presented on panels in Canada, the US, the UK, and Australia. Jenna completed a studio-based PhD in Critical Disability Studies at York University.

Cassandra Myers (right image) (they/she/he) is a queer, non-binary, crippled, mad, South-Asian-Italian performance poet and counsellor from Tkaronto, Ontario. Raised in the slam poetry community for seven years, Cassandra has earned titles such as the Canadian Festival of Spoken Word Champion. As he transitions to the page, her work has won the ARC Poetry Magazine’s Poem of the Year Award 2021 and the Reader’s Choice Award. Their first collection of poems, Smash the Headlights, is forthcoming from Write Bloody North Publishing.

Past Event

Shoreline, Sound Walk, and Listening Vessels

Wednesday July 20th, 4-6pm

Free, all ages workshop conducted by Sidi Chen
Location: Gather at Lakeshore Arts (2422 Lake Shore Blvd West) for the collective exercise and depart to the shoreline for the sound walk (approximately 1 hour 20 minutes)
Maximum Capacity: 20 Participant

In conjunction with the upcoming exhibition, Ecologies & Cosmologies (Themed Commission 2022), artist-in-residence Sidi Chen will lead a collective breathing/listening exercise and a sound walk along the shoreline of Lake Ontario in Etobicoke. 

At the first part of the workshop, Sidi will guide an experience of active breathing and listening through a sound performance and facilitation with a vessel of resonance. With the exercise and the vessel, Sidi will lead a sound walk along the shoreline of the Etobicoke for an embodied somatic experience of the local ecologies and community space to further understanding the relations and agencies held with the environment.

Participants will need to bring a handy container for water that you can carry around (cup, mug, glass, water bottle, etc.)

Covid Protocols

LSA takes the health and safety of staff and guests to heart and will have COVID safety measures in place to visit the exhibition. Mask-wearing will be enforced within the Community Project Space. LSA will have hand sanitizer and KN95 masks available for guests to use.

Inquiries can be directed to