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Shaheer Zazai: Are We Even


15 October 2022 - 11 December 2022


15 October 2022
11 December 2022

Works by

Shaheer Zazai

Curated by

Emily Falvey


Two side by side. To the left a graphic geometric drawing is made up of hundreds of red, yellow, blue and teal rectangles which form lines that loop around and behind one another. On the right the same pattern is woven into fabric. The colourful treads extending beyond the beige boarder.

Shaheer Zazai: Are We Even

About this exhibition

Afghan-Canadian artist Shaheer Zazai is known for incredible digital works that use thousands of individual, manual key strokes in Microsoft Word to mimic traditional Afghan carpet-making techniques. More recently, he has expanded his practice to include textiles, translating his digital works into jacquard weavings. The works in Are We Even continue his ongoing exploration of cultural identity in the context of diaspora and contemporary geopolitics, while also engaging with concepts of mirroring, transformation, splitting, and merging into new forms.

About the Artist

Shaheer Zazai received a BFA from OCAD University in 2011 and was artist in residence at OCAD University as part of the Digital Painting Atelier in 2015. He is a recipient of Ontario Arts Council grants and he was a finalist for EQ Bank’s Emerging Digital Artist Award in 2018. Since graduating, Zazai has had several solo and group exhibitions such as those at the Capacity 3 Gallery, CAFKA Biennial 2019, Art Gallery of Mississauga, Glenhyrst Art Gallery of Brant., Double Happiness Projects and Patel Brown Gallery. His digital works have been covered by CBC Arts in 2018, Ajam Media Collective in 2019 and the Globe and Mail in 2020. In addition to his solo exhibition at the Owens, his upcoming projects include a solo exhibition at the Agha Khan Museum (Toronto), the group exhibition Shifting Ground at Digital Arts Resource Centre (Ottawa), Every Answer is Correct, an off-site group exhibition curated by the Power Plant (Toronto), and Porous Identities, the inaugural group exhibition for Patel Brown Gallery’s Montreal location.


Image Gallery

Meet Shaheer Zazai

Images Left: Shaheer Zazai, 1114.8, 2019, digital print on watercolour paper produced in Microsoft Word, edition of 10, 28 x 35.6 cm. Courtesy of the Artist and Patel Brown Gallery. Right: Shaheer Zazai, 1114.8, 2021, Jacquard Loom woven tapestry designed in Microsoft Word, edition of 3, 127 x 152.4 cm. Courtesy of the Artist and Patel Brown.