Onya Hogan-Finlay (she/her)

Onya Hogan-Finlay is a multidisciplinary artist, educator, and sea salt farmer based in the LaHave Islands. Born in Fredericton of white settler ancestry and raised in Ottawa, Onya was eager to return to the Atlantic region in 2019 and contribute to the vibrant cultural sector. Her BFA studies at Concordia University brought her to Montréal where she later worked in Cirque du Soleil’s costume department and co-founded projet Mobilivre-Bookmobile project the binational mobile art exhibit which toured North America in an Airstream trailer between 2000-2005 with zines and artist books.

At the heart of her practice is a longstanding commitment to artist-run culture and education. Onya received an MFA from the University of Southern California in Los Angeles and worked as a teaching artist in K-12 public schools while mentoring undergraduates in the Visual and Performing Arts Education Program at the University of California, Los Angeles. Parallel to maintaining her independent art practice, she has produced exhibits, festivals, and events throughout North America as an arts administrator and artist-curator.

Her research-based art practice incorporates installation and performance to engage audiences in galleries and public spaces. Onya applies a queer feminist lens to create site-responsive interventions that illuminate the hidden histories of everyday objects and artifacts held in public collections and in 2SLGBTQIA+ archives. Her current work uses sculpture and drawing to trace the agricultural histories of apples and oranges as tools of colonial agrarian settlement in so-called Nova Scotia and Southern California.