Gestures curated by Tanya Mars

FADO is proud to present Gestures, an evening of performance works by five emerging artists and recent art school graduates. Curated by Tanya Mars, the evening focuses on concepts of gesture: gesture as movement, gesture as courtesy, gesture as mark. Reflecting a range of strategies and approaches to performance, Gestures introduces a fresh, vibrant, and diverse group of local and regional performance artists to Toronto audiences.

Adrian Kahgee
Christine Peplinksi
Erika DeFreitas
Keith Fernandes
Julian Fiala

FADO’s on-going Emerging Artists series grew out of this first event, initiated by performance artist and educator Tanya Mars. One event expanded into an on-going series in order to provide a professional platform for emerging artists and curators from Toronto and beyond. Working within a curatorial framework, the series is intended to nurture new work and ideas, as well as provide direction and mentorship. The series is also a vehicle to showcase the work of the community’s newest perspectives in performance art.


Erika DeFreitas’ multidisciplinary practice includes performance, photography, video, installation, textiles, drawing and writing. Placing emphasis on gesture, process, the body, documentation and paranormal phenomena, DeFreitas mines concepts of loss, post-memory, legacy and object-hood. Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally.

Keith Fernandes is a fifth year arts management student at the University of Toronto majoring in Drama. His recent credits include an original adaptation of Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland, and an original clown performance entitled The Golden Ball, which was awarded Best Production at the University of Toronto Drama Festival.

Julian Fiala is a feminist artist/activist working predominantly in performance and installation. Over the last two years, Julie has worked with marginally housed communities, women, and Queen’s University janitors to explore themes such as sex and class privilege, as well as notions of public/private space Recent credits include speaking at the Agnes Etherington Art Centre’s Active Practices Symposium and co-curating ARTHappens2, an evening of performances, happenings and events at Modern Fuel Artist-Run Centre. Julie currently resides in Kingston, where she has taken a job as Modern Fuel’s Program Director.

Adrian Kahgee is an Anishnaabekwe originally from Saugeen First Nation. She currently resides and teaches in Toronto. As an emerging video and performance artist, Adrian has worked on a number of collaborative projects with other First Nation artists, including Four Red Women Nude a radio/ performance art production aired on CBC radio. She has also been involved with the emerging video artist collective 640 480. Her most recent collaborative work, a documentary titled The Original Summit, Journey to the Sacred Uprising premiered at the 2002 imagineNATIVE Media Arts Festival in Toronto.

Christine Peplinski is a recent graduate of the Fine Arts program at the University of Toronto. She believes that art is better than the truth.

Emerging Artists

Initiated in 2003 by Tanya Mars, FADO’s Emerging Artists Series was created to provide an on-going professional venue for emerging artists from Toronto and beyond to develop and present a performance piece, working within a curatorial framework set out by an emerging curator. FADO’s intention with this series is to nurture new work and ideas, provide direction and mentorship to both the artists and the curator, and to showcase the work of the city’s newest perspectives in performance art.

FADO’s Emerging Artists series was initiated in 2003 by Toronto-based artist and educator Tanya Mars, who recognized that the best way to encourage young artists was by offering them a professional exhibition opportunity. Her vision was one of mentorship, targeting an interesting mix of new and emerging artists, many of them former students, whom she commissioned to develop new works responding to a thematic context. The initial evening of ambient, conceptual and cabaret-style performance art gestures curated by Mars later developed into a series designed to highlighting the work of Toronto-based emerging performance artists.

As the series developed, it became clear that this was an opportunity to nurture not only emerging performance artists, but also emerging curators. This strategy allows FADO to encourage new curatorial voices in performance art – an urgent need – and introduces us to new communities of artists. Most recently, the series has further developed to include artists not just from Toronto, but regionally as well. This furthers the series goal to showcase the range of work happening in the emerging performance scene in Canada.

The Emerging Artists series was a staple of FADO’s programming year from 2003 to 2014, and was always one of the most popular events in our performance art calendar.

2014: 11:45 P.M. | curated by Kate Barry
2013: .sight specific. | curated by Francisco-Fernando Granados
2011: Extra-Rational | curated by Gale Allen
2009: Misinformed Informants | curated by Lisa Visser
2008: Vivência Poética | curated by Erika DeFreitas
2007: Enter-gration | curated by Nahed Mansour
2005: Open Airway | curated by Elle McLaughlin
2005: Feats, might | curated by Alissa Firth-Eagland
2004: Home Repair by One Night Only
2004: Game City | curated by Craig Leonard
2003: Gestures | curated by Tanya Mars

Erika DeFreitas


Erika DeFreitas’s multidisciplinary practice includes performance, photography, video, installation, textiles, drawing and writing. Placing emphasis on gesture, process, the body, documentation and paranormal phenomena, DeFreitas mines concepts of loss, post-memory, legacy and objecthood. Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally including: Kitchener-Waterloo Art Gallery; Gallery TPW, Toronto; Project Row Houses and the Museum of African American Culture, Houston; Fort Worth Contemporary Arts; and Ulrich Museum of Art, Wichita. She is a recipient of the 2016 Toronto Friends of the Visual Arts Finalist Artist Prize, the 2016 John Hartman Award, and was longlisted for the 2017 Sobey Art Award.

Artist Orange

Just as a performance artist uses their body as their medium, this is a fragrance composed entirely of the orange tree: fruit, leaves, bark, roots, and flowers. Artist Orange performs itself.

Top Notes

neroli, blood orange

Middle Notes

fresh orange juice, petit grain

Base Notes

orange twig, orange seed