All in One Place: Jordi Alfaro, Bassem Alshamali, Cesar Correa Cordoba, Salwa Issa

All in One Place
Jordi Alfaro, Bassem Alshamali, Cesar Correa Cordoba, and Salwa Issa
Curated by Jenna Shamoon

February 2 – March 9, 2019
Opening Reception: February 2 from 2:00-4:00 pm

All in One Place is an exhibition featuring work by Hamilton-based artists Jordi Alfaro, Cesar Correa Cordoba, Salwa Issa, and Bassem Alshamali. The artists in this exhibition explore aspects of art-making ranging from abstract techniques to representational depictions. Alfaro’s large, ceramic sculptures exude a unique energy that incites contemplation of each object and the space it occupies. Using untraditional sculpting methods and materials, Cordoba makes intricate sculptures of animals from collected organic materials to examine humanity’s relationship with nature and waste. Likewise, Issa’s investigation of nature is evident in her vibrant paintings, depicting her observations of light and water. For Issa, water is inherently connected to her experience of migration. Reflecting on his journey to Hamilton from Syria, Alshamali creates images expressing his place in the world, across time and space. All in One Place captures not only the varied techniques and methods of each artist’s practice, but presents an array of conceptual interests including spatial dynamics, the natural world, and immigrant experiences.

This exhibition is part of Incoming!, a program for refugee, newcomer, and immigrant artists. Click HERE to learn more.


Jordi Alfaro was born in Catalunya, and developed his ceramic and sculptural practice in Barcelona. He came to Canada in 2003. Alfaro moved around in Canada and worked in many different studios in Elliot Lake, Kamloops, Montreal and Regina. He moved to Hamilton in 2013, and lives there still. During his time in Canada, Alfaro has continued to make art and exhibit. His work is represented by Sopa Gallery in Kelowna, BC.

Bassem Alshamali‘s journey in life has helped shape him on the path of creative process. His life is as abstract as his art. Bassem will draw from his journey from war torn Syria, to Jordan, then Lebanon and now finally landing him here in Canada. A newcomer to Canada in October 2016, Bassem has embraced his new home and is ecstatic to continue to evolve, as an artist, here in an environment that allows him to freely express his thoughts, ideas and choices without the trepidation of repercussions that have plagued many in Syria.

Bassem earned his Bachelor of Fine Arts in 2005 and Advanced Studies of Fine Arts, Sculpture, in 2006 from the University of Damascus, Syria. A Masters in Art History Philosophy was completed from the same University in 2012. While in Lebanon he began his PhD in Arts and Archeology but was forced to flee to Canada just shy of completion. Bassem intends to complete his studies here in Canada. He currently has a number of published papers on scientific art research.

Bassem is partial to sculpting in different mediums but feels bronze sculpture is his preference. What he also finds challenging is how to translate the 3 dimensional properties of sculpture to the flat 2-dimensional plane of a canvas. This challenge dictates to a unique style that is somewhat reminiscent of Picasso’s cubist movement. As in cubism, subjects and objects are broken up into shapes and pieces and re-arranged in what appears to be an abstract form.

Cesar F. Correa Cordoba was born in Mexico city , 1984. As a child, he began to develop his talents; exploring drawing and painting techniques, experimenting in his own artistic self-education, and experimenting with different artistic mediums. He attended different workshops in cultural centres in Mexico city. He began to use techniques fused with various traditional techniques; ceramics, weaving, painting, wood, metal, glass, and paper. Muralist and painter as well, exploring fantasy and reality on oil, acrylic paints, scratch board, among others.

In his process of experimentation, his style grew with a focus on organic sculptures, using a technique incorporating plants, seeds, peels, and natural materials collected from different regions of Mexico. This process has evolved over the past 16 years. These sculptures are a commentary on the consciousness embedded in the natural world.

Influenced by music and water, Salwa Issa, a Syrian born, Hamilton based, visual artist, combines energetic rhythms with flowing water in pursuit of a hidden space that straddles order and chaos. An architect by training, Salwa’s paintings offer vibrant melodies of colourful waves and geometric patterns. Since immigrating to Canada years ago, she maintained a love for the sea, and continued to envision with colour and texture the dynamic relationship between earth and water.

Originally from Palestinian decent, Salwa migrated through different cities in the Middle East and Canada. Raising her family in Canada, Salwa’s journey as an immigrant appears in subtle patterns in her paintings.


This exhibition is made possible through funding support from the Government of Ontario.

Subscribe to our mailing list: