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Tau Lewis

Cooper Cole, Toronto (FR4)

Tau Lewis’s self-taught practice is rooted in healing personal, collective and historical traumas through labour. She employs methods of construction such as hand sewing, carving and assemblage of found and repurposed materials to build portraits. Lewis conceptual framework investigates black identity and agency, memory and recovery. These sculptures reference childhood, autonomy and vulnerability. Every gesture towards creating a figure – each stitch or scratch – is part of a labour-intense process towards restoration and healing. Lewis uses animal and insect imagery as playful and ironic references to the tactless demarcation of black bodies as separate from other genres of being human. Infused with personal belongings, found objects and material markers of time, each portrait is an energetically charged microcosm of memory. The magical, liminal and bulletproof characters of an imaginary landscape, joyfully realized through sculpture.

Tau Lewis (b. 1993, Toronto) is a Jamaican-Canadian sculptor. Recent solo and group exhibitions include at New Museum, MoMa PS1, Shrine Gallery, (all New York); Atlanta Contemporary, Atlanta; Night Gallery, Los Angeles; Art Gallery of Ontario; Art Gallery of York University; 8-11 Gallery, Cooper Cole, Gallery 44 (all Toronto); Art Gallery of Mississauga; and Plug In Institute of Contemporary Art, Winnipeg. Lewis currently lives and works in Toronto, Canada.