Video- and filmmaker, teacher. Guyana-born, Carleton- and York-trained Michelle Mohabeer was a stalwart of the Toronto indie film scene after bursting into view with Exposure, her entry in Studio D’s Five Feminist Minutes (1990). The first upfront lesbian film from the NFB was also the first Canadian work by a lesbian artist of colour (see Chapter 5). Mohabeer’s prizewinning next work, Coconut, Cane and Cutlass (1994, 30) explores her Indo-Guyanese cultural and political heritage with its layered and poetic use of landscape, voice, dramatization and movement to evoke displacement and diaspora. These themes and this sensual hybridity of documentary, autobiographical, narrative and experimental modes continued to dominate Mohabeer’s approach in her imaginative subsequent works such as Two/Doh (1996, 5), an erotic connection between two women of different cultural origins, and Child-Play (1997, 14), the dream-state of an elder woman remembering childhood abuse.
Toronto , ON