Lectures and Talks

Art Connects | Sandeep Johal

Fri May 15 4:30 PM

Vancouver Art Gallery

Portrait of Sandeep Johal, Photo: Laara Cerman, 2018

on Murals and Motherhood

Friday, May 15 | 4:30 PM


Stay home. Stay safe. Stay connected with our new series of online gatherings, Art Connects!

In this edition of Art Connects, Vancouver-based artist Sandeep Johal will share how she has been coping during the COVID-19 lockdown, from her perspective as an artist and as a mother.

Over the past five years, Johal’s artistic practice has evolved rapidly. During this time, she became a mother; illustrated a book that she wishes existed when she grew up, entitled Stories for South Asian Supergirls; and has developed her own visual language to explore femininity, motherhood, inter-generational trauma and loss through depictions of women, in particular women of South Asian descent. Today, Johal’s murals can be found across the Lower Mainland.

Johal believes that art can uplift, educate and inspire, especially in this surreal and uncertain time of distance. She was recently commissioned by the Vancouver Mural Festival and the City of Vancouver to take part in #MakeArtWhileApart, an initiative that has transformed boarded-up storefronts in Vancouver with vibrant imagery and messages of hope. Johal’s mural, located at 1132 Robson Street, features a monkey and a bird and encourages us all to “hang in there.”

This artist talk will be moderated by Jas Lally, Art Rental & Sales Assistant, and Stephanie Bokenfohr, Adult Public Programs Coordinator at the Vancouver Art Gallery.

Questions? Submit them when you register or during the Zoom presentation using the Q&A function. You can also engage with your fellow attendees and panelists during the event using the Chat function.

New to Zoom? Learn how to register and attend a webinar here »


Sandeep Johal is a contemporary Canadian artist whose bold, colourful forms and intricate black and white line work is aesthetically and conceptually inspired by her South Asian heritage. Her most recent series, She Left Only To Come Back (2019), is an exploration of femininity, motherhood, inter-generational trauma and loss set against a backdrop of familial obligation and self-sacrifice. Johal’s work was featured at the Vancouver Art Gallery in the 3rd Floor Rotunda in conjunction with the exhibition Moving Still: Performative Photography in India. She has also worked on public projects with Burrard Arts Foundation, Indian Summer Festival and Vancouver Mural Festival. Her work has been featured in numerous print and online publications, including CBC Arts, CBC Exhibitionists, The Georgia Straight and Gray Magazine. Johal holds a Fine Arts Diploma with honours from Langara College (2007) and lives and works in Vancouver with her husband and son.


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