Northbound 2024 bridges boundaries cultural convergence

Bridges, Boundaries, and Cultural Convergence

Northbound was created in 2019 to uplift local professional artists and bring high quality art exhibitions to the North York community and has since presented 14 exhibitions with one exhibition at the North York Centre Mall in 2019. 

Visit our new exhibit at North York Centre, 5150 Yonge Street, in the main atrium!

This year, Northbound has been curated by Jasmine Vanstone, a Black Jamaican-Canadian artist living in North York. In partnership with GWL Realty Advisors and North York Arts, this exhibit amplifies the voices of Angela Walcott, Jassira De Almeida, and Jasmine Vanstone, to take up physical space in a high traffic location in Willowdale. Jasmine’s curatorial vision is rooted in the amplification of Black voices in conversation with Black Futures and highlights the importance of celebrating Black voices all year round. 

The Black Futures exhibition explores Bridges, Boundaries, and Cultural Convergence. Bridges are often symbols of relationships built between two entities and can be a metaphor for exchange. Boundaries are imagined or felt borders and walls that can limit the vulnerability or openness to exchange. Cultural convergence is a theory which recognizes changing relationships and experiences informed through open dialogue and appreciating the value of exchange while acknowledging and celebrating diverse cultures. 

Northbound Exhibit, Jassira, Jasmine, and Angela in the middle of their exhibited artworks.
Six artworks on big boxes in the atrium of the North Centre lobby. Photo by Maria Vega
Jennifer - Angela Walcott

Angela Walcott, 2024
11 x 17

Decorative Tape and graphite on watercolor paper

Artist Statement

Angela uses found objects in her art as a means of reducing waste. With landfills overflowing, she sees the simple act of recycling as a feasible way to amplify visual stories. Jennifer is an homage to the self and celebration of vibrancy of African-Canadian/Caribbean culture through bold pattern and color.

Journey - Angela Walcott

Angela Walcott, 2024
12 x 14

Mixed Media – Acrylic Paint and found objects on stretch canvas

Artist Statement

Journey moves us from various planes, traversing segments and boundaries texturally. As a metaphor for life’s journey, the audience is invited to participate in this aquatic-inspired journey where land meets water meets dreamer meets fashion.

Sing It Loud - Angela Walcott

Sing It Loud
Angela Walcott, 2024
10 x 12

Found Objects, tape and graphite mounted on glass

Artist Statement

The use of decorative tape along with found paper for Sing It Loud allows the audience to experience the composition in a different way. Tape is moulded to the contours of graphic typography in a playful way, This multi-dimensional approach gives the audience a sense of movement as words and images converge on the page.

Angela Walcott

Angela Walcott Headshot

Artist Bio

As a multidisciplinary Angela Walcott uses found objects as a bridge between past and present identities. Her visual narrative emerges from Caribbean, African and Latin American traditions. Various techniques are used to highlight sustainability and waste reduction in her practice through the use of living and lived natural inks and botanicals. By incorporating traditional and non-traditional methods Angela stretches the conversation with mixed media and elements of drawing, painting, ceramics, photography and typography as guides that inform her practice.

Instagram: @artistwritermaker

Self Portrait - Jassira De Almeida

Self Portrait
Jassira De Almeida, 2022
24 x 30

Oil on canvas

Artist Statement

This piece is about the things I like (purple, flowers, photography) and things I have trouble liking (my appearance) and bringing that together in this painting. When preparing for this painting I did not know what colours I would choose. I knew in the back of my mind that I would at least use purple, which is my favourite colour. Purple was once connected to royalty because it was rare and the only people who had access to it were wealthy. I have always gravitated towards the colour, knowing it is special. The three portraits represent the past, present, and future. The flowers are referenced from my nature photography which is one of the reasons why I started painting when I was young. I intended to show growth and change in this portrait, major themes I explore in most of my work.

Mom in Jamaica - Jassira De Almeida

Mom in Jamaica
Jassira De Almeida, 2022
16 x 20

Acrylic paint on canvas

Artist Statement

My mother is my role model and someone I love to capture to remember core memories because the expressions on her face are usually from excitement or happiness as my mom always sees the best in situations. This painting was done with no complete plan except the idea that I wanted to include depictions of my photography of my mom. I played with the hues of my mother’s face and just continued to layer as the months went by. Months became years and I finished the painting that represented a moment in my life that I still remember fondly.

self portrait experiment - Jassira De Almeida

Self-Portrait Experiment
Jassira De Almeida, 2022
1728 x 1988 pixels

Digital illustration

Artist Statement

This piece was practice for me as someone more comfortable with digital painting than I am now. I used my favourite colour again for my hair which is a large part of my identity and appearance. I wanted a contrast in my work and to use my hair to stand out rather than blend in as I have become more comfortable wearing my hair out and utilizing it to express myself. Although I don’t think I will ever dye my hair because of maintenance and all the time I have taken to grow, it is nice to create a version of myself that exists in my head. The work is an experiment since I was testing out my drawing skills and created a semi-realistic portrayal of myself for fun.

Jassira De Almeida

Jassira De Almeida

Artist Bio

Jassira De Almeida is an Angolan-Canadian visual artist who creates work digitally and traditionally. She is an undergrad animation student at OCAD U. When traditionally working, graphite, acrylic, watercolour, and oil are the mediums she uses for drawings, illustrations, and paintings. She combines analog and digital techniques when making stop-motion and 2D animation. She also experiments with photography and digital portraiture. She has recently been creating representations of herself and what inspires her (people in her life, nature, music, animation). She is focused on making fun and thoughtful stories with time-based and traditional media.

Oreo - Jasmine Vanstone

Jasmine Vanstone, 2022
18 x 24”


Artist Statement

Living within two contrasting cultural experiences, I am constantly navigating the liminal space existing between Jamaican and Canadian identity. My adaptation of Persephone’s story in Oreo speaks to the social pressure of forming my identity as a mixed-race person. Migration, relocation, microaggressions have led me to adapt code-switching strategies for social survival. Being compelled to express familiarity to one of my “halves” is a conditioned reaction to avoid being subjected to perceived horizontal hostility. Growing pains associated with learning who I am is enough and that I do not have to be defined by others’ ideas of race. My panganat moment is a visual celebration of natural and cultural elements that resonate with me and the idea of belonging somewhere “in-between.”

Intersectional Empathy - Jasmine Vanstone

Intersectional Empathy
Jasmine Vanstone, 2022
20 x 30”

Digital Collage & Illustration

Artist Statement

How can we focus on bridging connections between cultures and identities, while keeping in mind the space between us (privilege and power) as a potential site for sharing access to opportunity? That is a loaded question of which many marginalized people are tired of trying to unpack for gatekeepers while protecting their wellness. This digital collage work is a vision beyond the arch of a doorway of the vibrant future where intersectional empathy overpowers.

Out of Many, One People - Jasmine Vanstone

Out of Many, One People
Jasmine Vanstone, 2023
8” x 10”

Analog Collage

Artist Statement

As a Jamaican-Canadian mixed-race person navigating identity, I wanted to create a symbol of my embodied experience via a collage celebrating Caribbean culture in a Canadian context. Caribana, an iconic Toronto festival, celebrates the Caribbean community in Toronto and a swarm of people within the silhouette of a Black person symbolizes the significant contributions that Caribbean & Black communities have made to build and evolve in Canada. 

Jasmine Vanstone

Angela Walcott Headshot

Artist Bio

Jasmine Vanstone is a Jamaican-Canadian multidisciplinary artist, arts facilitator, arts administrator, and curator based in North York. She experiments primarily in collage, poetry, murals, and paper crafts to share visual reflections of cultural identity, wellness, and environmental justice. Through vibrant colours and lyrical abstraction, she conveys the complexity of identity by visual overlapping of layers and interdisciplinary creations. Natural elements such as botanicals, animals, and produce become symbols of cultural environments, behaviours, and blessings through their creative manipulation. Each creation documents lived experiences and reflections to ultimately serve as a catalyst for exploration and introspection, inviting viewers to engage with the complexities of identity and the profound beauty of the world around us. With passion and the power of mentorship, Jasmine’s work has been featured at Meridian Arts Centre, Finch TTC station, Nuit Blanche, Gallery 44, DesignTO, Pearson Airport, KUUMBA, StreetARToronto, JAYU, VIBE Arts, and more.

Instagram: @articulately_jasmine


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