Sonja Ratkay is currently living & working in Tiohtià:ke or Montréal.

In her work, materials are the traces of intangible emotions, thoughts, and moments and materiality is a means to navigate the threshold between interior and exterior realms. Plaster, spice, ribbon, glue, detritus, paper, cloth, and yarn merge in and out of each other. Materials embrace each other, sometimes absorbing into one another. Writing is wrapped around abstracted body parts, text turns into a drawn rock-like formation. Gestures are used as language and language used as gestures. Some moments are impulsive, not very self aware, and humble whereas others are meticulous, planned and repetitively created. These processes co-exist in extreme pushes of mental space: meditative hums and energetic hurls.

Liminal states of being are often the subject matter; being on autopilot through muscle memory, being partially asleep after a nap, walking down a corridor and having a moment of déjà vu. Using motifs of fleshy text and abstracted bodies featuring organs and veins but also ghost-like extensions and shadows, she draws attention to skins and boundaries of bodies in space, and the im/materiality of memory and perception.



b. Vancouver, BC, Canada


2022-ongoing MFA candidate, Fibres & Material Practices, Concordia University, Montreal, QC

2021 Fibres & Material Practices courses, Concordia University, Montreal, QC

2015 Bachelor of Fine Arts (Sculpture), Emily Carr University, Vancouver, BC


2021 Puddle Popper Lounge, Vancouver Comic Arts Festival, Vancouver, BC

2019 Perverse Signage, Family, Montreal, QC

2018 How The Wet Sock Flower Revealed Itself, Dynamo Arts Association, Vancouver, BC

2018 Staring Contest Through Fuschia Membrane, Little Sister (now Sibling), Toronto, ON

2017 Ancient Follicle Seeks Green Wish, The New Gallery, Calgary, AB

2017 Plintor Drax Lounge, Site Factory, Vancouver, BC

2016 A Beast Salient, Franc Gallery, Vancouver, BC

2016 Puddle Popper Pt. 2, Vancouver Art Book Fair, Vancouver, BC

2016 New Forms Festival, Vancouver, BC

2016 Puddle Popper, Dynamo Arts Association, Vancouver, BC

2015 The Show, Concourse Gallery, Vancouver, BC

2014 mia, curated by Logan Sturrock, Amazing Gallery, Vancouver, BC

2014 Just A Sec, curated by Katherine Neil, Concourse Gallery, Vancouver, BC

2014 Through The Somethingscape, curated by Meaghen Buckley & Kristine Suddaby, Concourse
Gallery, Vancouver, BC

2014 Postures For Lessness, curated by Logan Sturrock, Amazing Gallery, Vancouver

2013 Autocenter Summer Academy Exhibition, curated by participants and instructors of the academy, Autocenter, Berlin, Germany


2018 Office Hours X SPIT X PLOT Workshop series and publication, Access Gallery PLOT space, Vancouver, BC

2018 Science Fiction & Other Reading Room (modular furniture collaboration), 221a, Vancouver, BC


2018 ROSE LAPSE; 11-page book of drawings and poems

2016 MAGNETIC STRAWBERRY; 24-page book of drawings

2016 FLOWER HEELS; 16-page book of drawings

2016 SEAHORSE; 12-page book of drawings

2015 ANGEL;12-page book of drawings

2015 COLON; 12-page book of drawings

2014 Untitled; 12-page book of drawings


2018 How The Wet Sock Flower Revealed Itself

2017 Ancient Follicle Seeks Green Wish

2016 Puddle Popper pt. 2-risographed diorama and 4-pages of collaborative drawings.
Vancouver, BC. Designed and produced by Moniker Press.

2016 Puddle Popper ;10-page risographed book of collaborative drawings. Vancouver, BC. edited & designed by Puddle Popper.

2016 LINT;45-page risographed book of collaborative drawings between Sonja Ratkay & Tylor Macmillan. Vancouver, BC.


2021 Sum (spread of drawings). edited and designed by Brennan Kelly

2019 Moniker Press 2019 Calendar (April page).

2017 SUPER TOWERS (1 page of drawing). Germany. edited & designed by Vincent Fritz.

2016 Freakers Unltd.; (2 pages of drawings). Vancouver, BC. edited & designed by Tylor Macmillan & Juli Majer and Cristian Hernandez

2015 DDOOGG #1(2 pages of drawings and cover art). Vancouver, BC. edited & designed by Tylor Macmillan, Juli Majer and Cristian Hernandez.

2013 MAKE GOOD THE DAMAGE (2 pages poem and a drawing). Vancouver, BC. edited & designed by Sara Wylie & Hugo Noriega.

2013 Late Cuts 2. (1 page drawing). Vancouver, BC. edited, designed & screen-printed by Tylor Macmillan, Hugo Noriega & Liam Shiveral.

2012 Bonus #1(1 page drawing/poem).Vancouver, BC.


2022 Merit Scholarship for MFA, Concordia University, Montreal

2020 Concept to Realisation Grant, Canada Council for the Arts

2013 Autocenter Summer Academy, Berlin, Germany

2008 Entrance Scholarship for BFA, School of the Art Institute of Chicago

2008 Entrance Scholarship for BFA, Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design

2008 Entrance Scholarship for BFA, San Francisco Art Institute

2007 Buschlen Mowatt Scholarship Program, Arts Umbrella


2023 Lunchbox Artist Talk Series

2021Puddle Popper VANCAF



2018 Canadian Art

2017 Must-Sees This Week: November 9 to 15, 2017, Canadian Art

2015 DDOOGG Website contribution

2014 Art Daily Vancouver Zine Review

2014 Just A Sec’ Exhibition: Comments From the Curator

Soft Shell

Works left - right

Mohair, fish glue, two flies

Bundle 3
Plaster, fish glue, rust, mixed fibres

Silk organza, glue

Looking Old
Wool sweater, plaster, india ink

Midnight Waves/Unreadable Writing
Graphite on paper mounted on handmade frame

Time Stamp
Embroidery floss, stained tank top, pins

Photography by Laurence Poirier

Soft Shell is a series of explorations of liminality through sculpture, collage and drawing. Through use of glues and other adhering methods, I explore the joining, merging and interlocking of bodies, language and materials.

Glue does not inherently transform an individual item, it rather binds and adheres multiple pieces into a single gesture. Typically a “quick fix” to mend objects, I used glue in large quantities, to “fix”, pause, or lock an active gesture into place. I challenge the functionality and purpose of glue. Fused textile pieces may seem to be destroyed rather than mended as the glue is absorbed into the fibres. However, I embrace the murky joining of forms.

I use objects that can be held in my hands or arms, fit around my body and often even my own body part pressings. They are hand knitted and crocheted textiles as well as used garments that have a sense of comfort and domesticity. I want to be able to manage these items, to have an intimate relationship with them. They are extensions, shadows and placeholders of the body.

Pores are clogged as fibres are penetrated. Are the skins of these objects the edges of their being? Does the glue expand and engulf other items parasitically? There is a quietude to these still objects, their colours muted behind veils of ‘glue’. These are objects holding on to themselves, creating barriers, protecting oneself but at once separating their original form. This is a transformation that is not necessarily permanent, but also one that may outlive the object.

Seaweed Sucker
Organza, wool roving, thread and metal dowels
55 x 100 in

Photography by Edwin Isford

Salad in the Bloodstream
Organza, wool roving, thread and metal dowels
55 x 100 in

Photography by Edwin Isford