Andil Gosine moved to Oshawa, from Trinidad, at the age of 14. His formative teen years in the city are revisited in these works, in which he both shares his personal desires and vulnerabilities, and exposes the enduring impact of struggles he and his family experienced. Told as an “autobiography in flora,” the exhibition is organized chronologically, with works about the prelude to and enduring aftermath of his teenagehood in Oshawa bookending re-imagined archival materials from his experience here.
Gosine uses the Ixora flower as a key icon throughout. Indigenous to India and other parts of Asia, the flower was brought by his indentured labour ancestors to Trinidad, where it is now ubiquitous. Through this show, Gosine brings them to Canada as an offering to the place and people of Oshawa, who impacted his life path in complicated ways.