Staff

Indu Vashist

Indu Vashist

Executive Director
Indu Vashist

Indu Vashist

Executive Director

Indu Vashist has served as the Executive Director of SAVAC since 2013. Currently, she is serving her second term on Executive of the Board of MANO (Media Arts Network of Ontario), she sits on the Advisory Board of Blackwood Gallery, and the Advisory Council for Creative Time Summit hosted by The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery.

She has written and published extensively including: “Redefining South Asia without Borders.” (Art Gallery of Mississauga, 2013); “From Collective to Institution.” (Surrey Art Gallery, 2015); “Family Photo Album.” (Art Asia Pacific Vol 95, Sept/Oct 2015); “What do you do?: Basil AlZeri’s You Do What You Love Because You Do One Two, and More Than Two.”  (University of Waterloo Art Gallery, publication forthcoming).

Prior to working at SAVAC, she had been equally splitting her time between India and Canada. In India, she worked with artist, queer and feminist arts organizations and collectives: Bombay-based Queer Nazariya International Film Festival, Delhi-based Nigah Media Collective, and Madras-based Marappacchi Theatre Group.

indu@savac.net

Nahed Mansour

Nahed Mansour

Artistic Director
Nahed Mansour

Nahed Mansour

Artistic Director

Nahed is a Toronto-based multidisciplinary artist and curator. Working in video, installation, and performance, her works typically draw on visual archives to highlight the relationship between entertainment, labour, and processes of racialization and gendering. In using found images and found footage in her work, Mansour seeks to draw attention to the reproduction of social hierarchies by means of seemingly innocent forms of entertainment. She has worked at SAVAC since 2015.

Her current project focuses on the iconography of Little Egypt, the stage name of the first belly-dancer in North America, who premiered the dance during the World’s Columbian Exposition in 1893 in Chicago.

nahed@savac.net / nahedmansour.com

Sajdeep Soomal

Sajdeep Soomal

Archives Coordinator
Sajdeep Soomal

Sajdeep Soomal

Archives Coordinator

Sajdeep Soomal is a writer, researcher and public programming specialist who was hired to complete a three-year oral history project about the Toronto-based South Asian arts festival Desh Pardesh (1988-2001) with the launch of a digital archive and podcast series. Over the past few months, he has also designed a new visual brand and website for the organization. Prior to working at SAVAC, Sajdeep was a research assistant at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, where he assisted with exhibition planning and conducted collections research.

Recently, he has been busy writing about the student suicide epidemic, telling contemporary diasporic Punjabi folktales, and preparing for the publication of his thesis, “Drone Strikes and Diasporic Fights: Rad South Asian American Youth Resistance to America’s Predator Empire,” in an anthology with University of Minnesota Press. Out of the office, Sajdeep re-invents his many drag personas – expect more Punjabi boliyan, a few Pakistani pop songs from the 80s and–of course–her laal dupatta.

archives@savac.net / sajdeep.com

Board of Directors

Aaditya Aggarwal

Aaditya Aggarwal

Board Member
Aaditya Aggarwal

Aaditya Aggarwal

Board Member

Aaditya Aggarwal is an aspiring filmmaker and photographer working at Canadian Art. He studied Film and Contemporary Asian Studies at the University of Toronto and worked on the Not A Place On A Map: The Desh Pardesh Project in collaboration with SAVAC. Along with editorial work for Camera Stylo and Arbor Journal, he is also a contributing writer to The New Inquiry and Mask Magazine, among other publications. He is interested in documenting family life, matter and oral histories.

Marina Fathalla

Marina Fathalla

Board Member
Marina Fathalla

Marina Fathalla

Board Member

Marina Fathalla is a multidisciplinary artist and writer based in Toronto. She received her MFA from OCAD University, and holds an undergraduate degree in Architecture from Wentworth Institute of Technology in Boston. Her projects are fueled by a particular sensitivity to site, at the intersection of its poetics and its politics. She explores modes of preserving land history, and strategies for preservation in conversation with museology. With published writing in Kapsula Magazine co-presented with SAVAC for the issue Spaceless Place, CMagazine, she is currently participating in a writer’s mentorship with Y+ Contemporary.

Shirin Haghgou

Shirin Haghgou

Board Member
Shirin Haghgou

Shirin Haghgou

Board Member

Shirin Haghgou has lived, worked, and attended university in Toronto over the course of the past decade. Her academic interests lie in the intersection of cultural production, memorialization, radical-feminism, and nationalism. For seven consecutive years, she served on the organizing committee of the Toronto Palestine Film Festival, and is actively involved in numerous cultural and political organizing initiatives in the city. She currently works as a coordinator for a project delivering culturally and historically relevant curriculum to high school students in Ontario.

Serene Husni

Serene Husni

Board Member
Serene Husni

Serene Husni

Board Member

Serene Husni is a filmmaker, translator, and video journalist. She holds an MFA in documentary Media from Ryerson University.  Her first film Zinco chronicles the evolution of construction material used in building Palestinian refugee homes in Al Talbieh (Zizya) camp in Jordan, over a period spanning 45 years. Serene is a co-founder of Aramram, an Arabic-speaking web television based in Amman, and is part of Dalaala, an Arabic-English translation collective based in Toronto. Currently, she is working with three camera operators documenting life in times of war in three rebel-held Syrian cities. She is also working on her second film which asks what it means to be Palestinian if one has never lived under occupation.

Vimeo Profile

Rahim Jamal

Rahim Jamal

Board Member
Rahim Jamal

Rahim Jamal

Board Member

Rahim Jamal is a litigation lawyer at Borden Ladner Gervais LLP (BLG) specializing in administrative law. He has done pro bono work for the Refugee Sponsorship Support Program, Law Help Ontario, and the Canadian Civil Liberties Association. Prior to joining BLG, Rahim studied at Osgoode Hall Law School, where he served as President of the South Asian Law Students’ Association, a caseworker in the Immigration and Refugee Law division of Parkdale Community Legal Services, and a member of the Faculty Council Equality Committee. Rahim holds a Masters from the London School of Economics, where he studied in the Race, Ethnicity, and Post-Colonial Studies program.

Sarah Malik

Sarah Malik

Board Member
Sarah Malik

Sarah Malik

Board Member

Sarah Malik is an educator whose work focuses on underserved and marginalized populations. Sarah has worked with government, academia, and small and medium not-for-profits, in areas including policy and program development, delivering workshops and trainings, and community building with members of marginalized groups. From 2009 to 2015 Sarah worked at McGill University as an Equity Education Advisor specialized in Anti-Racism and Cultural Diversity. In 2015 Sarah relocated to Toronto.

Manar Moursi

Manar Moursi

Board Member
Manar Moursi

Manar Moursi

Board Member

Manar Moursi is an architect and artist. A graduate of the University of Virginia, Manar also holds a dual Masters degree in Architecture and Urban Policy from Princeton University. In 2011 she founded Studio Meem, an interdisciplinary research studio. Her design work has been widely published and received multiple awards. In addition to her practice with Studio Meem, Manar writes regularly, participates in art exhibitions and teaches. Her writings on urban issues have appeared in Domus, Thresholds, Lunch, Mada, Cairobserver, the Funambulist and Egypt Independent. Her book Sidewalk Salon: 1001 Street Chairs of Cairo co-authored with David Puig was published by Onomatopee in 2015. She has taught at several institutions in Cairo and is currently teaching at the University of Waterloo.

In addition to my design practice, I write and publish regularly, as well as maintain an art practice and teach. My writings on urban issues have appeared in Domus, Thresholds, Lunch, Mada, Cairobserver, the Funambulist and Egypt Independent. My book Sidewalk Salon: 1001 Street Chairs of Cairo co-authored with David Puig was published by Onomatopee in 2015. I’ve exhibited my photography work at the Contemporary Image Collective in Cairo, Onomatopee Eindhoven, and the Goethe-Institut (Algiers, Rabat, Amman). In 2014 I collaborated with Mahatat for Contemporary Art on the design and construction of the Wonder Box – a contemporary revival of traditional peep show boxes with live performances. The project traveled in the streets of Cairo for the duration of a month.

studiomeem.me

Asad Raza

Asad Raza

Board Member
Asad Raza

Asad Raza

Board Member

Asad Raza is a public art producer and project manager. Professionally, Raza has over 10 years of experience producing large scale, complex public art exhibitions and projects, many of which take place in urban landscapes, in close proximity to the day-to- day lived spaces of people.

For the last eight years, he has worked as a producer and programmer at Nuit Blanche Toronto, facilitating the creation of temporary public projects by Michael Snow, Tania Bruguera, Public Studio, Luis Jacob, Douglas Coupland, Shary Boyle, Zacharias Kunuk, Martin Arnold, Paul-Andre Fortiér, Joan Fontcuberta and many others. For the last six years, he has directed ‘Art of the Danforth’, a long term, experimental community art festival, presenting projects by VSVSVS, Department of Unusual Certainties, John Sasaki, Labspace Studio and many others.

In 2013, he was the producer and manager of LandSlide Possible Futures, a monumental public art intervention in Markham, Ontario, exploring the future of cities and development, led by York University and Public Access Collective. The project featured site-specific interventions in heritage structures by over 50 artists.

In addition, Raza has worked for the City of Toronto’s Public Art Department, where he was involved in coordinating Public Art competitions, as well as the assessment and ongoing day-to- day conservation and maintenance of public art sculptures in the city. A first-generation immigrant, who came to Canada in his teens, Raza has deep and abiding interest in how we access shared public space and what is possible within it. The projects he produces, particularly in public art, continue to excavate these possibilities.

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401 Richmond St. W.
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