Tenderly Coded


Sonia Ekiyor-Katimi


july - august 2021


At home residency
&
Virtual conversation with the artist


Virtual conversation with Sonia Ekiyor-Katimi
Friday October 1, 2021, at 5:30 pm EST
Online, on Zoom
Register here

The Galerie du Nouvel-Ontario is inviting you to join a virtual conversation featuring artist in residency Sonia Ekiyor-Katimi. During this event, the artist will discuss their new project “Tenderly Coded”, share the works that were produced during their residency, and talk about both the challenges and rewarding experiences of exploring queerness as a subject matter in their artistic practice.

This conversation will be led in English.

A brief Q&A with the audience will follow.


Growing up secretly queer affects a child in many negative ways but one of  the most damning, is the burden of shame. Although our societies have taught us to be ashamed of sex and sexual desire, this judgment disproportionally affects queer people. While some communities are privileged enough to begin shedding this shame, we among the queer community continue to see the reality of our loves, intimacies, and vulnerability reduced to mere deviant perversions. Whether a queer person is actually sexual or not, we cannot avoid nor determine our depiction and frequent over-sexualization in the media, which leaves the realities of our love largely unexamined. The intersections of race, disability, and gender cloud the topic behind yet more judgement, more silence, and more shame.

As an artist, I am fascinated with the magnetic nature of queer attraction and its secret language of desire. Cultivated through centuries of secrecy, aroused by furtive glances, a stolen caress, a heavy silence, it is this language that I wish to explore.

Through  interviews and multimedia portraits, this residency shares the stories of three people (Kawtar, Gaia, and Princesse) of varied identities and experiences with queerness and diaspora. These portraits present a subtle story of (self) love, expression and community in an attempt to give dignified representation to queer people from origins that reject queerness.

Though it begins with three interviews and portraits within this residency, this will be an ongoing project which will uncover a lexicon of love and desire, which transgresses respectability, objectification and sexualization, and elevates, above all, the intimate beauty of queer love.


The artist

Sonia Ekiyor-Katimi is a non-binary, Nigerian, self-taught visual artist and architectural designer living in Canada. They recently completed their Masters in Architecture and are now exploring their personal art practice. They take an interest in queer identity through community arts, participating in intersectional panels and multidisciplinary collaborations such as the Up Here festival, Nuit Blanche (Sudbury and Montréal), Black Lives Matter Sudbury panels, and group installations for upcoming festivals.