I’m a multi-disciplinary artist working in sculpture, installation, fibres and performance and a public historian in the making. Usually working with themes of nostalgia, memory and relationships, my pieces are often self-referential and autobiographical, yet connected to larger themes and open to interpretation. I’ve always been a collector, an archiver. Over the years I have managed to turn my room into a cabinet of curiosities, filled with trinkets from around the world, from right here, from my past and from my present. I graduated twice from Concordia University with a BFA in Studio Arts and an Italian minor, and a BA in Honours Public History. Currently, I’m completing my masters in Public History at Carleton University. You can find out more on my website Artistorian and see my artwork here.
My current research project is an oral history focused on the rejection of Italian immigrant children from francophone elementary and secondary schools in post-1945 Montreal, up to the reforms of the late 1960s and early 1970s. After the school board proposed the removal of anglophone and bilingual programs in the East End suburb of Saint-Leonard, the fight for the right to choose one’s language of instruction culminated in a riot on Jean-Talon street in September 1969. My research questions the accepted historical narrative, which suggests that immigrants, including Italian immigrants, chose anglophone schools solely because English was the language of opportunity. In doing so, I hope to also confront and deconstruct the political, linguistic, and historical assumptions surrounding this event. Further, my work challenges boundaries created by the divisive anglophone vs. francophone narratives that permeate the histories of Montreal, Quebec, and Canada.