ConverSalon started as a personal initiative to host artist talks at home to support artists who were new to the Toronto scene and or to create support networks between established and non-established, Latin and non-Latin artists. The idea of the food is part of solidarity economic strategies to share without profit or simply to let people taste our delicious cuisine. After many years of working alone Jorge Lozano and Alexandra Gelis invited artists friends Sojin Chun, June Park, Rebecca Garrett and Mikel Hoolboom to join forces in a collective to strengthen the idea of ConverSalón to explore the possibilities of expanding it to reach a broader participation.

converSalón: From conversar “to talk” in Spanish. An alternative option created to expand the networks for disseminating contemporary art, outside of gallery spaces. ConverSalon is a collaborative project supported by collective labour and desire for community, engaging in an economy of exchange of knowledge and care, and does not receive public funding.The idea is to have fun, share food, and engage with critical ideas, to create non-institutional ways of showing artists’ projects.

Alexandra Gelis

alexandragelis.com

Colombian-Venezuelan artist living and working in Toronto, Ontario. Her studio practice combines new media, installation, and photography with custom built interactive electronics. Her projects incorporate personal field research as a tool to investigate the ecologies of various landscapes through examining the traces left by various socio-political interventions. She uses data capture techniques, video, sound, and spatial and electronic media to create documentary based immersive installations; single-channel videos, and experimental photography.

June Pak

junepak.ca

Born in Seoul, South Korea, and now lives in Toronto, Canada. By utilizing the assumed functions of hyphenation, as to both connect and divide two (or more) entities, she investigates different means to articulate visualization of ethnicity. She resists the prescribed ethnic subject’s positioning in the current universalized and institutionalized construction of ethnic work. Her multidisciplinary works (photo, video, sound, text, installation, performance, and writing) have shown around nationally and internationally. She received numerous grants and awards from Canada Council for theArts, Ontario Arts Council and Toronto Arts Council for her projects, including the K.M. Hunter Artist\Award (2004) and the Chalmers Arts Fellowship (2016). She currently teaches as a sessional lecturer in Visual Studies program at the University of Toronto and in the Department of Visual Art and Art History at York University.

Rebecca Garrett

rebeccagarrett.ca/newsite

Toronto based artist whose award-winning experimental videos, installations, and community video projects have been exhibited at numerous venues in Canada and abroad. Garrett has worked collaboratively and/or collectively with many groups and individuals in Canada, the USA, Zimbabwe, Kenya and the UK. Her work expresses a long commitment to naming economic, colonial and social injustices and building relations of exchange and reciprocity.

Mike Hoolboom

mikehoolboom.com

Mike Hoolboom began making movies in 1980. Making as practice, a daily application. Ongoing remixology. Since 2000 there has been a steady drip of found footage bio docs. The animating question of community: how can I help you? Interviews with media artists for 3 decades. Monographs, books, written, edited, co-edited. Local ecologies. Volunteerism. Opening the door.

Sojin Chun

hsojincita.com

Sojin’s practice includes creating works in video and installation. Using a whimsical and humorous approach, her work explores local narratives to examine the intersections and contradictions found in cultural, social and personal identities as a result of geographic relocation, and cultural multiplicity. Chun’s personal experience living in the Korean diaspora in Bolivia, and Canada, informs her work which reveals the idiosyncrasies found in culture, in its inconclusive and contradictory nature.

Jorge Lozano

jorgelozano.ca

Jorge Lozano uses film and video to build experimental narratives: epistemological disobediences to see the world differently, to have a visible presence and to create new coordination with living and nonliving matter. His work is not political but made politically. Jorge has been working as a film and video artist for the last 20 years. His fiction films have been exhibited at the Toronto Film Festival and at the Sundance Film Festival amongst others. His experimental work has been exhibited at many international festivals and galleries. He has expanded my practice to the organization of many cultural and art events, the creation of aluCine, Toronto Latin Media Festival and facilitating self- representations video workshops for marginalized Latin and non- Latin youth in Canada since 199,1 Venezuela 2005 and Colombia 2005- 2016. Distributed by V TAPE: http://www.vtape.org/catalogue.htm