Ness Lee: Artist in Residence

15 March 2024 – 15 August 2024

About the Work


BMO Learning Centre

Ness Lee’s work is an investigation of the human form dealing with notions of intimacy and self-love. Rather than the emphasis on the physical form, the emotional resonance and presence is brought to focus in periods of vulnerability, discomfort and acceptance. Using various mediums, they explore and echo these emotions, encompassing its tactile experience into one that is filled with a depth of feeling, playing on humourous rhythms and self-exploration.

The MacKenzie welcomes Ness Lee, as our Artist in Residence. Ness is designing and building a transformative environment for people of all ages to experience in the BMO Learning Centre. We invite you to drop by the Learning Centre during public drop in times to meet Ness and check out the space as it evolves. Once complete, this space will be open to the public to enjoy through an ongoing self-directed program of creativity and discovery from 15 March 2024 – 15 August 2024.

For more information, please contact Ken Duczek, Coordinator of Learning Initiatives at or call 584-4250 ext. 4290. 


About the Artist

Ness Lee (she/they) is a Chinese-Hakka Canadian born in 1989. Studying at The Ontario College of Art and Design, they have received their Bachelor of Design in Illustration. Based in Toronto, their work has been shown in institutions such as the Art Gallery of Ontario, the Agnes Etherington Art Centre, the Gardiner Museum, the  Art Gallery of Hamilton, as well as galleries in New York, Boston, Los Angeles, Miami, Taiwan, Montreal and Toronto. Lee has also participated in mural festivals in Canada and Internationally in Hyderabad, India and Cozumel, Mexico. 

Lee draws upon personal history and narratives of their diasporic cultural upbringing and identity to their body, language and sexuality. With these embodied experiences, Lee creates tender and surreal illustrations, paintings, sculptures and installations as a language of self-discovery and acceptance. Exploring various states of mind during intimate stages of vulnerability, Lee’s work takes form as an effort in seeking comfort, forgiveness and desire for an end of a self-perpetuated state.