Vivi Niya Gao


The City of Individuals 

Acrylic, 60” x 96”

Previously found in Etobicoke School of the Arts PDX Solo 2019, University of Toronto Trinity Review TR132 Spring Journal 2020, Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Online Exhibition, Tag Teen Art Gallery New York 2020, Scholastic Art and Writing Awards 2019. 


Expressions of Still Life I

Pencil on paper, 27.5” x 40” 

Previously found in John B. Aird Gallery Drawing 2019 and Etobicoke School of the Arts PDX Solo 2019.TR131 Spring Journal 2019, Scholastic Art and Writing Awards 2019.

 I think of my work as an ongoing experiment that questions the boundaries of distrust fabricated within the material layers of my human condition. Most specifically, the ways of which disconnection between my imminent family has hazed my perception of identity. 

Culturally, I was subconsciously fed the fear of exposing vulnerability, being taught to ignore it, as doing so would make me stronger. 

My art began to grow off the foundation of fear. Exposing too much or too little would lead me to feel shame when shame was not to be deserved. I chose not to believe in what I was once taught. I began analyzing the different discretions within myself, with the final goal being to rescue what was lost, me. 

I’ve learned to study the shape my identity forms through gradients of distrust within reality, my family, as well as within myself. I seek a new perspective. One that allows me to be transparent, with my most recent works attempting to uncover and reconcile my hidden histories with the very history I know.

Ashley Cai

Niya Gao is a mixed-media artist. She works in a variety of different mediums, including photography, painting, sculpture, and installation. She graduated from the Contemporary Arts program at Etobicoke School of the Arts and will be attending the School of Art Institute Chicago in the fall of 2020. She is also the founder and the curator of the Us Gallery Contemporary. Her work has been exhibited in group shows at Alberta University of the Arts in Calgary, Never Such Innocence London, United Kingdom, University of Toronto Trinity Review, the Albright Knox Gallery in Buffalo, the John B. Aird Gallery in Toronto, and Art Etobicoke in Toronto.