anthropomorphized thrifted objects that look like people sitting around a table with hand-crafted fake food

Thirteen high school and four undergraduate students have joined CAFKA in the pilot of its new Youth Council initiative: Young Contemporaries. Since February, participants have been working toward a youth led project for inclusion in this year’s biennial exhibition.

Through successive sessions of group brainstorming on the biennial theme, Stay With Me, hands on workshops with local artists, and creative ideation through mad-lib play, youth participants identified collective themes of nostalgia, loss and belonging. Actively imagining community engagement with their work, the group developed the installation, The Missing Seat using materials graciously donated by The Working Centre’s partner secondhand store, Worth A Second Look (WASL). Anthropomorphizing household objects and furnishings at a table decked out with a feast, there waits a single vacant table setting inviting visitors into the sculptural mural to generate community connection and reflection.

Young Contemporaries, is a pilot youth led program where fine art students from Cameron Heights Collegiate Institute and the University of Waterloo are working towards a collaborative and youth lead project for inclusion in CAFKA’s upcoming biennial exhibition of contemporary art in public spaces this summer.

The artists are as follows:

Cameron Heights Collegiate Institute - Layla Boutaba, Owain Buchnea, Sarah Cheon, Bethel Eshetu, Zaeema Fatima, Kathy Lam,  Jena Masalma, Raha Rahman, Komal Siddiqui, Ravjot Singh, Emily Toushan, Emma Witzke, Tailai Zhao.

University of Waterloo - Tijana Krivoka, Iqra Majeed, Kady Buchanan, Merna Gallo


Young Contemporaries is made possible by an initial investment by The Keith and Winifred Shantz Fund for the Arts held at Waterloo Region Community Foundation.