01. What is your name and what do you do?

My name is Déji (Pronounced: Day Ji), I am an artist who uses Art, fashion, modelling and photography to tell stories as well as express myself. Born in Lagos, Nigeria, I moved to Toronto, Canada 8 years ago, and I must say it has been the best 8 years of my life so far.

"Toronto, Canada in general, means a better life to me. I moved here at a young age and it changed my life, it meant better education, better healthcare system, better everything."

- Deji Kalakuta

02. What made you decide to do this?

I decided to go into arts in general in order to bring my vision to life and also connect with creative individuals across the city of Toronto and possibly the world.

03. At what point did you realize you chose the right path?

I believe I have always loved art in various forms, I just wasn’t courageous enough to express it, mainly because I was surrounded by negative vibes. As a Nigerian, your parents/family members frowned upon anything “Arts”. To them, you are supposed to be a big time lawyer or Doctor. So, I took up arts as a form of expression.

04. What does Toronto mean to you?

Toronto means a lot to me, it is a city of love and when I say love, I meant in general. it means opportunity and freedom. It is a city of acceptance and most importantly Multiculturalism. Toronto, Canada in general, means a better life to me. I moved here at a young age and it changed my life, it meant better education, better healthcare system, better everything.

05. What advice can you give to young Torontonians?

Believe in your hustle, honestly, believe in whatever you do, as long as its pure and satisfying. Don’t waste time being fearful, go for what you believe in and make sure you go hard. Never live in the past, yes things happen, but you gotta learn to move on and do better and make sure that you have no regrets about what you should have done. Don’t be afraid to leave a toxic situation in order to protect your mental health and life in general. And last but not the least, Know your worth and add taxes to it, don’t ever compare yourself to anyone.

My upcoming project “Black Masculinity” is about expression, the expression of a Black man, a black carefree boy, who wouldn’t cage himself in order to satisfy everyone and anyone. A black man who is learning to love and accept himself no matter how society views him.

Visit www.dejikalakuta.net or follow him on Instagram.