Che Kothari

Executive Director, Manifesto

Che Kothari

Che Kothari
Executive Director, Manifesto

Culture. Love. Positivity. Opportunity. Change. These are the words that sum up what Chetan Kothari, affectionately known as ‘Che’, stands for. At a young age, born on October 12th 1983, he has not only become a revered photographer but also a role model and leader within his community dedicated to fostering other young artists and young leaders in the cities he lives in and the world at large.

Fresh out of school, he focused his lens on documenting the current artists of our time - those artists who had a message of social change embedded into their storytelling.  He has photographed intimate portrait sessions with the likes of Ziggy Marley, Ice Cube of NWA, Chuck D of Public Enemy, Zaki Ibrahim, Common, Talib Kweli, Dead Prez, Afrika Bambaataa, K'naan, Erykah Badu, Nas, k-os, Shad, and many others as personal work as well as for covers of magazines and publications.These images have been a part of over 100 exhibitions from museums to the streets in Toronto Canada, Kingston Jamaica, New York USA, Tokyo Japan, Bombay India and more.

The next major step for Che was founding a non-profit organization, Manifesto Community Projects, of which he is currently the Executive Director. Manifesto is a grassroots organization working to unite, energize, support and celebrate Toronto’s vibrant and diverse music and arts community, and find innovative ways of working together towards common goals. Manifesto aims to provide a platform and the resources needed to advance the growth of the arts as a tool for positive change, on the individual, community and city level.

In addition to his role as Executive Director, Che spends time as a mentor, workshop facilitator, keynote speaker. He is involved on a number of boards and advisories, both locally, nationally, and internationally, and is building a strong legacy of youth arts organizing tied to self-actualization globally.