Conceived by Toronto artist Farrah Marie Miranda, Speaking Fruit is a mobile, roadside fruit-stand and design studio that feeds the movement for migrant farmworker rights.
Beginning with a single question posed to migrant farmworkers in Southern Ontario, this project asks: “If the fruits you grow and pick could speak from dinner tables, refrigerators, and grocery aisles, what would you want them to say?” Organizers have gathered dozens of written and audio responses to this question from migrant agricultural workers across Southern Ontario and mobilized an incredible array of artists, partners, activists, and allies around these messages, turning them into direct action and also creative expression. With colourful produce, a virtual screen, and lively soundscape, this hybrid sculpture/organizing hub convenes workshops and events that aim to share strategies and build alliances between movements for racial justice, food justice, and labour justice while distributing to the public these messages through specially designed produce packaging.
From September to December 2017, as part of the Art Gallery of York University’s current exhibition, Migrating the Margins, Speaking Fruit will be stationed on York University’s campus in addition to touring to other locations around Southern Ontario. We are pleased to host Speaking Fruit to coincide with the Confronting Global Capital: Strengthening Labour Internationalism and Transnationalism in Canada Today conference presented by McMaster University Faculty of Social Sciences, as well as October’s James Street Art Crawl.
Join us outside of the Workers Arts & Heritage Centre on Friday, October 13th, 2017 from 6 – 9:30 pm to experience Speaking Fruit. All are welcome! Also take the time to view our fall main gallery exhibition, Deborah Koenker’s Grapes and Tortillas, which shares the stories of migrant farmworkers in BC’s Okanagan Valley.
Speaking Fruit is one of the 200 exceptional projects funded through the Canada Council for the Arts’ New Chapter program. With this $35M investment, the Council supports the creation and sharing of the arts in communities across Canada. It is also the recipient of generous support from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council, Ontario Arts Council and University of Waterloo.
WAHC would like to thank it’s union, public, member and volunteer supporters for their role in supporting this presentation of Speaking Fruit.