Screening: Where do our memories go? Curated by Kai Trotz-Motayne

Screening: Where do our memories go? Curated by Kai Trotz-Motayne

Wednesday, June 19th, 2024 at 6:30 pm

Vtape, Bachir/Yerex Presentation Space

4th floor, 401 Richmond St. W. suite 452

This summer, Vtape is excited to present two programs from our Curatorial Incubatees. This year’s Curatorial Incubator v.19: Island in the Streams called for projects that explore collections, how they are accessed online as never-ending digital repositories, and how we can interrupt the stream to create new moments for refuge. Emerging curators do independent research using the rich resources available through Vtape, write a curatorial essay for their program of selected titles, and, finally, present their curated program to the public.

Kai Trotz-Motayne’s program Where do our memories go? which explores the changing landscape of Caribbean communities in Toronto and how rituals are passed on and reconstructed through generations. In historian Robin Cohen’s 1998 essay Cultural Diaspora: The Caribbean Case, Cohen describes how diaspora involves “a literal or symbolic interest in return.” Reflecting on her own community of second-generation Canadians who have spent little to no time in the Caribbean, Kai asks, “How do we continue to engage our history?”


Where do our memories go? 

Curated by Kai Trotz-Motayne

Maigre Dog, Donna James, 1990, 07:50

The intention in making Maigre Dog was to celebrate the Jamaican women who nurtured Donna James growing up and surrounded her with their vernacular language. James wanted to present the voices of these women and evoke the warmth of countless hours spent in steamy kitchens filled with the smell of food cooked with love. Listening to them “talk that talk” about their lives, their men, and their pain, James wanted to acknowledge the roles that oral history and circular thinking have played in her own development. The tape reveals layers of thought, whispers of memories, and circles of knowing, which together evoke the complexity of the life process.

Home, Jason Ebanks, 2004, 14:30

A documentary exploration of the word “home,” as told by Black artists living in Toronto.

Making Sweetbread with Gran, Raquel Rowe, 2020, 07:40

Racquel Rowe: “Making Sweetbread with Gran is one of my works where I focus on the matriarch of my family as she does different tasks. I was fortunate enough to spend the summer at home in Barbados where I spent time learning how my granny makes traditional Barbadian dishes. This work examines the relationship between culture, food, history, and the passing on of traditions.”

Seeing is Believing, Shaunna Beharry, 1991, 08:27

The artist’s camera searches a photograph of her mother, following the folds of the silk sari in the photograph as they dissolve into grain and resolve again.

Homesick, Natalie Wood, 2007, 03:14

Homesick is an experimental and dream-like video that documents a drive over the Maracas hills. The drive is winding and scary and conveys the artist’s struggle with her relationship to her homeland. The viewer comes along for the drive and we both end up hitting a wall that takes us into another space populated by a Moko Jumbie — a spirit healer — who moves us in a dance in a non-linear time and space that heals.