Do You Know Why the Waves Break?

May 05

 —  May 25

Image Description: Alyssa Alikpala, slowly unfolding (until empty), digital video, wheatpaste, petals on stone and petals in water carried away by the current, 2022. 1 MIN 48 SEC (Video still courtesy of the artist) 

Location: Bachir/Yerek Presentation Space, Suite 452 (4th floor), 401 Richmond St West, Toronto

Gallery Hours: Tuesday - Saturday, 12PM - 6PM

Open to the public on Thursday, May 5, 2022 at noon and runs until Wednesday, May 25, 2022. Please stay tuned for reception dates and details.


COVID-19 Policy:

Images Festival is committed to providing an accessible festival and continues to work to reduce barriers to participation at our events. This year, we are implementing a COVID-19 policy to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission for all, and to prioritize the participation of people who are disability-identified, immunocompromised, or part of an otherwise vulnerable group.


The following guidelines will be in place:


Masking: Masking is required when visiting the exhibition.

Self-Assessment: We ask that staff and participants screen themselves for COVID-19 before visiting the exhibition.




Curated by Jaclyn Quaresma and featuring the work of Alyssa Alikpala (Toronto), Laïla Mestari (Chicago/Montreal), and Myriam Rey (London), Do You Know Why the Waves Break? considers water as both a site to contemplate the body and one’s positionality as well as a mode of connection to spirit and distant ancestors. 


Note: This exhibition receives its title from artist Myriam Rey’s contribution to the exhibition, Oh My Water (2020). 

  • Alyssa Alikpala is a Filipinx interdisciplinary artist, designer, and researcher.  Born in Vancouver and currently living in Toronto, Alyssa works across sound, sculpture, installation, and ephemeral forms exploring the sensorial body and its relation to material and environment, focusing on the physical process both as a way of generating insight and as a meditative practice. Her current body of work includes impromptu interventions, inviting slowness and sensitivity. The works have become a vessel for healing and acceptance. 

  • Born in Casablanca, Morocco, Laïla Mestari lives and works in Chicago and Montreal. Driven by a continuous dialogue between the visual and performing arts, her autobiographical practice touches on themes such as diasporic identity, ecofeminism and transcorporeality. Resulting from collage and assemblage, her work takes the form of photographs, textile works, installations, video-performances and drawings that highlight the surreal overlap of life and fiction, of the intimate and the political, the primitive and the digital, the banal and the marvelous.

  • Myriam Rey is a French-Syrian visual artist based in London. She is interested in using cinematic ‘dispositifs’ to experiment with new possibilities of embodied female subjectivities to tackle themes close to her heart: memory, uprooted experiences and hybrid identity. She began making films while studying Anthropology at University College London and won the Inspiration Award at the 2015 AHRC film festival for her debut short, This Island’s Mine. In 2019, her short film Only My Voice, funded by Creative England & BFI Network, won Best Short Doc at Nova Frontier FF in New York.