Zinnia Naqvi is an emerging interdisciplinary artist whose practice investigates the notion of authenticity and identity in the context of colonialism, especially in relation to cultural translation, language, and gender. These works are part of an ongoing series begun in 2019 that repurposes found photographs of the artist’s family visiting Canadian tourist sites prior to immigrating to Ontario.
When reading images from Yours to Discover, viewers are invited to consider the many layers of narrative at play and to strengthen our awareness of the political context of their making. Naqvi subtly inserts critical commentary on Canadian ideals and immigrant experiences by juxtaposing these images with texts on national identity and race theory. She simultaneously invites playful engagement through a nostalgic association with board games. Importantly, these games themselves centre colonialist and capitalist agendas. Through the inclusion of her own arm and perfectly manicured fingernails, she works through what she calls “the precarity of brown bodies being included in these sites.”
While these works examine the specific experience of Naqvi’s family confronting Canadian ideals and values, they also speak to broader patterns of cultural adaptation and belonging.
Presented by Capture Photography Festival in partnership with Canada Line Public Art Program – InTransit BC