Online program
  • January 26, 2021 - 5:30 – 7 pm

Anthony Gebrehiwot in conversation with Brandon Hay and Randell Adjei

Presented by the Doris McCarthy Gallery in association with the exhibition 'From Boys to Men: The Road to Healing'

Anthony Gebrehiwot is a passionate photographer and community leader, whose creative lens re-visions photography as an ongoing dialogue of social change between subject and society.

Gebrehiwot seeks to communicate without language in an intimate and vulnerable way. Through photography, he portrays the vocabulary of race, masculinity, history, perception, and vulnerability. His latest series titled From Boys To Men: The Road To Healing, is a visceral display of Black masculinity. The series exposes the necessary labour of unpacking learned behavior attached to childhood trauma. While using the combination of contrasting landscapes, Black bodies, and raw human emotion, Gebrehiwot explores the affective power of Black bodies in confronting the viewer's humanity and empathy. The photographs, (arranged in a nonnarrative configuration), aim to destabilize the distinction between past, present, and future. Gebrehiwot's unique visual language extends across temporal sensibilities, to trace the thread of trauma to the root. The metaphors meant through the selection of colour, texture, and emotional expression encourage the viewer to place themself within the poetry of masculine fragility.

Brandon Hay, MES is a graduate of York University, with a Masters in Environmental Studies and an Environmental Business Certificate from the Schulich School of Business. He is a father of three boys, and the founder of Toronto-based grassroots social movement, the Black Daddies Club. Currently Brandon is attending Gestalt Institute of Toronto.Brandon works as the Program Manager for Toronto Community Benefits Network, a Toronto based not for profit, that works with various community stakeholders to implement community benefits agreement with major construction projects in the City of Toronto. Brandon is a strong believer in equitable and innovative approaches to his community work; he works with an intersectional lens around issues of marginalization. He brings 10 years of mobilizing, community-based research, event planning, and leadership experience to this role.

Randell Adjei is an author, inspirational speaker, arts educator and community leader who uses the spoken word to empower and transform through “edutainment”. He is the founder of one of Toronto’s largest and longest running youth led initiatives, Reaching Intelligent Souls Everywhere (R.I.S.E. Edutainment).

Randell is also a MaRS DD - Studio Y Cohort 2 Fellow, 1 of 5 coaches involved in the Toronto Public Library’s (Poetry Saved Our Lives) project and a regularly sought after speaker and presenter with the Toronto District School Board and Toronto Catholic School Board. Adjei is a featured performer on TEDxUTSC and has shared stages with the likes of Jessie Reyez, Terry Crews, Paul Mooney, Maestro Fresh Wes and D’bi Young.