Through engagement with archival ephemera, material culture, and family photographs, My Grandmother’s Dress tells a story of early diasporic Punjabi women making and remaking culture in Canada. Against a backdrop of patriarchal traditions, racist hostility, and experiences of dislocation from homelands, the artist explores those lived experiences to create a visual discourse that disrupts colonial narratives and reanimates the lives of those excluded from dominant histories. Part autobiographical, part historical and part fictive, her exhibition uses a series of tactile installation and mixed media pieces to consider the concept of the palimpsest and the idea that ineradicable traces of the past endure through generations.
Angela Aujla is a South Asian Canadian visual artist. Her mixed-media, narrative artwork explores the complexity and interplay of history, memory, culture, and identity with a focus on diasporic and material culture. Aujla’s artistic practice is influenced by her academic study of visual culture, anthropology, and feminist postcolonial theory. She finds a natural confluence between her academic and artistic practice as she engages with archival ephemera, photography, drawing, and collage in ways that disrupt colonial narratives and animate stories left on the margins of Eurocentric, patriarchal history.