Artist Statement

Like many of us, Ghislain Brown-Kossi is made up of numerous different cultures from various parts of the world. He currently lives and works in Canada, was born in France, and has heritage from Ghana and the Ivory Coast. As he works towards his Canadian citizenship, he is increasingly fascinated with the many questions of identity, immigration and ancestry. With this new series, Brown-Kossi is expanding on his practice of abstracting symbols and writing systems. He is creating what appears to be a map, but on closer inspection, viewers will note the shapes are not specific geographical locations. Instead, the abstract maps are made up of memories and how many places and cultures can create a whole. The term Umoja is from the Kiswahili language spoken in 14 different African countries. In this context, the term directly refers to the imagined maps and translates to “unity”.

Artist Biography