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BODY LAND IDENTITY is a photographic series, video installation and empowerment project that investigates representations of the Black female body and women of the African diaspora in the Canadian landscape. This collaborative national project was created by artist, Ella Cooper, in collaboration with four inter-generational groups of women of Canadian African/Caribbean descent from Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal and Halifax. 

Body Land Identity focuses on creating positive representations of Black women set against quintessentially Canadian landscapes, where ‘land’ serves as a metaphorical representation of national identity, dominant society, earth/environment, First Nations territories and the place of Black women within it. 

This poignant exhibition that is proposing to tour Canada includes large-scale portraits and a video installation by the artist accompanied by a series of photos, words and poems created by the participants in response to the question “ How do you want to be seen and celebrated in the world?” 

This project offers an important reflection on dominant Canadian visual culture and representation of Black women in Canada, while also serving a catalyst to spark dialogue around the black female body and black female representation in Western visual culture, photography and contemporary arts today. 

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Made possible with support from the Canada Council for the Arts & the Ontario Arts Council Exhibition Assistance Program

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