Insomnia: Aitch’s Beautiful Us

You know how this works. I wait till I have my typical bout of insomnia, lay in bed and troll through the internet looking for something special I can share with the rest of you sheep chasers. This early morn, I’m catching up with illustrator, Aitch.

Aitch originally hails from Romania; her colorful matte folky illustrations depict the dreamy-ist dreams with a hint of sweet morbidity hiding amongst William Morris-esque gardens and bring to mind a bright and bold reincarnation of Victorian melancholy while still retaining a strong sense of her Romanian heritage.

Insomnia: Aitch's Beautiful Us

Insomnia: Aitch's Beautiful Us

Insomnia: Aitch's Beautiful Us

Insomnia: Aitch's Beautiful Us_skull

Insomnia: Aitch's Beautiful Us_chest and abdomen

Insomnia: Aitch's Beautiful Us_Heart

Insomnia: Aitch's Beautiful Us_blood

Insomnia: Aitch's Beautiful Us_womb

Insomnia: Aitch's Beautiful Us_hand and foot

 

 

Louise Bourgeois’ Guarantee of Sanity, ‘An Unfolding Portrait’ at MoMA

Celebrated sculptor, Louise Bourgeois (1911-2010) had her first real retrospective, at the Museum of Modern Art at the age of seventy-one. Bourgeois worked well into her nineties, leaving behind a body of work spanning over 70 years of her past and present self.

You might best, be familiar with her colossal bronze and steel Spider sculptures (odes to her mother) that loom high above your head on delicate, spindly legs.  Or her Cell enclosures, those emotional retreats situated within various structures, housing collections of objects, tapestries and sculptural forms to evoke safe spaces for one’s anxieties and fears.

louise-bourgeois-unfiltered-at-moma

Bourgeois used art as a release for her feelings, once stating that “art is the guarantee of sanity.” Her creativity and her life merged evocatively, creatively cataloged within a substantive range of artistic mediums, thus propelling her into a rightful place as one of the most influential artists of the twentieth century.

Fittingly, a celebration of her life’s work, comes back to New York City, back to MoMA in the new exhibit, Louise Bourgeois: An Unfolding Portrait. 

Here you will see the little-known aspects of Bourgeois’ artistic practices­ before she turned definitively to sculpture.

Curator Deborah Wye digs deeper into Bourgeois’ earlier years, juxtaposing rarely seen prints and illustrated books with thematic groupings of sculptures, drawings, and paintings, “exploring motifs of architecture, the body, and nature, as well as investigations of abstraction.”

The prize of the show sit’s in the museum’s Marron Atrium – Spider, one of the series of Cells that Bourgeois created over the last two decades of her career, and the only one of Bourgeois’ sixty-two Cells that brings together the spider and cell structure.

louise-bourgeois-unfiltered-at-moma

Louise Bourgeois, “Spider,” 1997, steel, tapestry, wood, glass, fabric, rubber, silver, gold, and bone. 14′ 9″ × 21′ 10″× 17′, collection The Easton Foundation

Nearly 15ft tall, the steel spider sculpture crouches over a Cell, the door of its caged barrier between the interior world of Bourgeois and viewer, left slightly ajar. A chair adorned with unraveling tapestry sits inside; worn, somewhat less vivid tapestry drapes sections of the cage lending to connotations of restoring, and repairing oneself through art.

Another gallery showcases paintings that unabashedly layout Bourgeois’ affinity for the opposite sex, as her depictions eroticize the body well into a time where youth imagines age does not follow.

You explore Bourgeois’ time as a printmaker, finding the Spider motif beginnings sketched out on paper before becoming featured heavily in her sculpture work.  Even her frequent use of the spiral as a symbol for a twisting and strangling of emotion flows in and out of her early repertoire.

louise-bourgeois-unfiltered-at-moma

A romanticized version exists at Dia: Beacon. The Couple is an unfiltered, inherently, freer manner of speech.

 In, An Unfolding Portrait, MoMA examines an earlier example of that imagery controlling the relationship of this talk in Spiral Woman.

louise-bourgeois-unfiltered-at-moma

Louise Bourgeois’ Spiral Woman, 1984, at MoMA

This study is genuinely Louie’s last act, her vocabulary of imagery – A lifetime of abstracted emotion in context.

 Louise Bourgeois: An Unfolding Portrait runs at MoMA September 24, 2017–January 28, 2018

Both Dia: Beacon & MASS MoCA house substantial sculpture work from Louise Bourgeois in their permanent collections.

*Article previously written for and featured in Azure Azure Magazine.

 

 

We Saw It And Loved It: Our Top Art Exhibitions of 2017

Sadly, our Wish List of ‘Must See Exhibitions’ was too extensive to cover. What we saw and loved made our list of Top Art Exhibitions of 2017. Thankfully, most of these shows run through 2018. If you haven’t seen them, here’s your convincer.

 

Third Space, Shifting Conversations about Contemporary Art at Birmingham Museum of Art

January 28, 2017 – January 6, 2019

Ebony G. Patterson Among the weeds, plants and peacock feathers, 2014 (Mixed Media) Photo: Ginger Rudolph for HAHAMAG

Third Space is “an imagined place that ties cultures together by their common experiences and considers the voices of people who are often unheard.”  The exhibition opens up that dialogue with over 100 contemporary art pieces – most culled from the museums’ own collection.

Your journey is tied to reference points that guide you in finding personal meaning within the art. The sections are: representation/agency/gaze, tradition/memory/history, landscape/nature/spirit, and migration/diaspora/exile.

Third Space will run for 2 years, during that time the works of art will change every 6 months, shifting your travels.

Photographs, sculptures, and paintings are just a few of the mediums represented here along with a rich multitude of artistic representation from Alabama, Brazil, Cuba and South Africa – to name a few. We’re talking heavy hitters like Kerry James Marshall, Ebony G. Patterson, Mark Bradford, José Bedia, Thornton Dial, and William Christenberry.

Here are our TOP 10 works of art from the first 6 months of the exhibition.

 

James Turrell at Mass Moca

On view, at least through 2018

Perfectly Clear (Ganzfeld), 1991 Gift of Jennifer Turrell © James Turrell, Photo by Florian Holzherr

MASS MoCA is currently exhibiting Into the Light, a James Turrell retrospective bringing together light installations from every stage of the 74-year-old artist’ five-decade career.

I often say there are only two types of Turrell people: The Believers and the Unimpressed. Even then, I remain unmoved in my theorizing they just haven’t met their Turrell moment yet.

Turrell has often acknowledged this disconnect in contemporary art between the audience and the artist; “Generally, audiences are looking towards what they like, and I can tell you, that’s the last thing on an artist’s mind… I don’t know if I believe in art. I certainly believe in light.” Mass MoCA has laid this exhibition out to dazzle even the unbelievers with Turrell’s intimate relationship between perception, light and time.

There are nine Turrell rooms to experience in the expanded exhibition space of MASS MoCA’s newly opened, Building 6. Perfectly Clear (Ganzfeld), a two-story installation, is hands-down, the centerpiece of the retrospective.

Upon entering the room, you are given paper booties to wear.  Attendants escort you up a flight of stairs to a massive opening with curved walls. You step into a white void gradually filled with light and changing colors. It quickly becomes difficult to discern where the walls begin and the ceiling ends, creating a feeling of walking toward what seems a mesmerizing endless expanse.

 

ITEMS: Is Fashion Modern? at MoMA running through January 28th, 2018

Amanda Lopez; Photo: Ginger Rudolph for HAHAMAG

Let’s start off with the first shocker, this is MoMA’s first exhibition on fashion and design in 73 years– BOY did they deliver the goods (pun intended).

Items: Is Fashion Modern? explores the present, past—and sometimes the future—of 111 items of clothing and accessories that have had a strong impact on the world.

What the curators got right is knowing that while inclusivity is important, so is getting the story right.  The show featured items with histories gave an intensive broad view of the times (Zoot Suit Riots?!), and it dug into the microcosms within urban communities. Chameleons like Door Knocker earrings, Dapper Dan Jackets, Hooded Sweatshirt, the Red Bandana, and the Plain White Tee stood in the spotlight– sans a homogenized version of their backgrounds they could truly travel in the truths of where they originated and what varied meanings they have assumed over the years.

Claps all around for Paola Antonelli, Senior Curator, and Michelle Millar Fisher, Curatorial Assistant.  I have never seen museum guards engaging with an exhibition this hard, nor people spending so much time reading the show materials.

 

Show Highlight We Never Thought We’d See

Louise Bourgeois: An Unfolding Portrait at MoMA running through January 28th, 2018

photo: Ginger Rudolph for HAHAMAG

The French artist and celebrated sculptor Louise Bourgeois (1911-2010) had her first real retrospective at the Museum of Modern Art in New York (MoMA) at the age of 71. Bourgeois worked well into her 90s, leaving behind a body of work spanning over 70 years.

A celebration of her life’s work is now showing at MoMA in the new exhibit, Louise Bourgeois: An Unfolding Portrait.

The prize of the show sit’s in the museum’s Marron Atrium: Spider, one of the series that Bourgeois created over the last two decades of her career, and the only one of Bourgeois’ works that bring together the spider and cell structure.

Nearly 15 feet tall, the steel spider sculpture crouches over a Cell, the door of its caged barrier left slightly ajar. Inside, the upholstery of a chair seems to unfold like a flower, while another tapestry, less vivid and more worn, covers sections of the cell, signifying repair and self-restoration through art.

 

 

Best Show Revival

Video Game @ The Museum of the Moving Image

May 13–January 28, 2018
Changing Exhibitions Gallery

Space Invaders_Video Game Exhibition_Photo: Ginger Rudolph for HAHAMAG

The Museum of the Moving Image brought back last year’s popular Arcade Classics exhibition featuring video arcade games released between 1971 and 1993, drawn from the Museum’s collection.

Though the era of the video arcade game is long gone, arcade games were the grounds for innovation and experimentation that informed the genres, conventions, and play mechanics of the video games that we know today.  This arcade allows visitors to play 23 of the era’s most beloved games (old school tokens & token machines included), in their original form alongside well-researched descriptions of the games origin, creator and notes it’s space in popular culture.

The earliest game on view in Arcade Classics is Computer Space (1971), the first coin-operated video arcade game, created by Nolan Bushnell. The 23 games on view in the exhibition range in genre from early sports games (Atari Football, NBA Jam, Track & Field); fighting games (Karate Champ, Mortal Kombat); driving games (Pole Position, Out Run); puzzle and platformers (Donkey Kong, Frogger, Q*Bert); and a diverse array of “shooters,” many set in space (Asteroids,Galaxian, Defender, Space Invaders, Zaxxon), but also earthbound variations like Centipede.

 

 

 

 

Best Local Show

Reclaimed at The Art Dept 

Philadelphia, PA

Show ended on October 28th, 2017

Suture Self by Emily Carris, Photo: Ginger Rudolph for HAHAMAG

It took a year and a half for the artist, Emily Carris to research and make the objects for her solo show ‘Reclaimed’.

The show hit a nerve, intensifying the narratives of slavery with artifacts and mixed media pieces layered, stitched, dyed and laced with materials we still use in our everyday lives– commodities that lay claim to past and modern-day slavery.

Her show reaffirms that this conversation is still relevant.  We need to lay claim to/understand the history so we know where to find the light to pave our way into an enlightened future.

Standout UK Art Shows of 2017

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chris Ofili: Weaving Magic

The National Gallery – April 26th, 2017 – August 28th, 2017

We were so thrilled to make it to the National Gallery to see Turner Prize winner Chris Ofili’s collaboration with internationally renowned Dovecot Tapestry Studio.  Here in the Sunley Room, the stage was set, Ofili painted the walls with a large mural featuring voluptuous Asiatic dancers of various genders. The lighting was dim, except for along one wall, where a lush, aquatic colored tapestry hung like an offering at the altar.

Commissioned by the Clothworkers’ Company, Ofili collaborated with the internationally renowned Dovecot Tapestry Studio to see his watercolor design translated into a handwoven tapestry.  It took over two and a half years of dedication by five master weavers to create this extraordinary masterpiece. Ofili had admittedly challenged the weavers to interpret his watercolor, trying to make it difficult to recreate his soft fluid transitioning of translucent colors that bled into one another like a seeping dream.

At almost 8 feet high and 24 feet wide, the breathtaking tapestry eclipsed Ofili’s watercolor, gorgeously reflecting Ofili’s love affair with the myths, magic, sensuality, and colors of his home base of Trinidad.

 

Grayson Perry: The Most Popular Art Exhibition Ever!

Serpentine Gallery – June 8th, 2017-September 19th, 2017

Of course, they took some liberties with this title, but it was in truth one of the most talked about exhibitions of the summer – even if it was its own hype machine.  I was still on the fence; would I spend time in London seeing the solo show of the artist I remembered as seeming quite obtuse and gimmicky as he accepted his Turner Prize in a dress?

Then I read a review by Laura Cumming from The Guardian, that sealed the deal for me. “I’m off to buy a very serious piece of political art,” boasts the bubble on one of Grayson Perry’s new pots. Who’s speaking? Some idiot collector of course: the kind of plutocrat who needs an adviser to help him choose, who becomes a gallery trustee for the cachet, who buys art as a talking point for parties. The kind of fatcat who buys just such a pot.”

I began to understand that Perry is making his fame off of social/cultural clichés– that I can get into.

Perry’s ceramic pots were the highlight, delightfully hilarious in their glamorous far off stately demeanor, a façade, which on closer inspection a belies a stratum of comments that ridicule the system of hierarchy and elitism that rules the art world.  I couldn’t remember the last time I got to laugh at art laughing at itself. Unless we go to ‘I Love Dick’ season 1, episode 1 where you’re meant to overhear some pretentious intern at some pretentious art party state that “There’s Marfa realness. There’s Marfa “realness,” and then there’s “Marfa Realness.”

The show becomes meta, as Grayson Perry becomes part of the establishment that he mocks, the collectible artist with a collectors list that gets alerted way ahead of the shows actual opening to purchase art based solely on the weight of his name.

The show had breakaway moments with pieces that take a stab at commentating on contemporary cultural and gentrification. Red Carpet, 2017 is influenced by Afghan war rugs. “This is a map of British society as evocative and inaccurate as a geographical one made by a medieval scholar. The distortions partly reflect the density of population rather than the lie of the land. Its covered in words and buzz phrases that I felt typified the national discourse in 2016.”

 

Arthur Jafa – A Series of Utterly Improbable Yet Extraordinary Renditions

Serpentine Gallery – June 8th, 2017-September 10th, 2017

You know Cinematographer Arthur Jafa’s work– He recently directed JAY-Z’s “4:44” music video,  and was the director of photography for Solange’s “Don’t Touch My Hair” and “Cranes in the Sky.”

His work with ex-wife Julie Dash is a film phenom– Daughters of the Dust (1991) a multigenerational tale of black women from the Gullah sea islands struggling to hold on to their culture. The visuals from Dash’s indie masterpiece became an inspiration for Beyonce’s visual album 2016 Lemonade.

Let’s not forget his seven-minute video Love Is The Message, The Message Is Death, containing found footage exploring African-American identity through contemporary imagery, all set to Kanye West‘s “Ultralight Beam.”

Jafa’s first UK solo exhibition at London’s Serpentine Sackler Gallery, A Series of Utterly Improbable, Yet Extraordinary Renditions, was a site-specific installation for the gallery including a mix of photography, film and social media elements.

The work reflected Jafa’s interest in exploring and re-contextualizing particular historical narratives and news stories that have been subject to bias against the Black community.  “How do we imagine things that are lost? What kind of legacy can we imagine despite that loss and despite the absence of things that never were?… Black people in America have always had to make art out of absence – whether that be the absence of accurate portrayal, or even of basic materials. We can dance, we can move, in a certain kind of fashion. Our artwork will always be bound up in our struggle. And the absences that exist in our lives because of it.”

 

The Official Miami Art Basel Roundup of 2017

For veteran fair attendees Art Basel can feel like the same old story year after year; leading galleries flock from North America, Latin America, Europe, Asia and Africa (this year’s Miami edition boasts 20 new galleries) to show significant work from the masters of Modern and contemporary art, as well the new generation of emerging stars. The thrill lay in the search for the standouts hiding amongst the 500,000 square feet of exhibition space.

This was the 16th Edition of the Miami Fair, featuring 268 premier galleries from 32 countries, a new curator for the Public sector, and a new exhibition layout – longer aisles, wider aisles, more lounge space (much needed for rest, relax and recharging).  Poignant works engaging with politics, race, gender and social issues had a strong presence in the Galleries sector.  I was also pleasantly surprised to see galleries like Victoria Miro, bring work from their well-attended summer exhibitions.

Here are the standout pieces we found before our feet gave out and our brains crashed from art overload, your official Miami Art Basel Roundup of 2017.

 

 

Chloe Wise | “My sad heart and your stiff nipples at the Biennale” | Oil on Canvas

Chloe Wise | “My sad heart and your stiff nipples at the Biennale” | Almine Rech Gallery

Wise paints breathtaking creatures who ooze complicated pretty girl stories you’d actually want to hear. “My Sad Heart…” kills with that subtle mirror image of a young woman exhausted into grace.

 

Artist: @chloewise_

Gallery @alminerechgallery

Kehinde Wiley | Portrait of Nick Cave, Nadezhda Polovtseva, 2017 | Oil on Canvas

Kehinde Wiley | Portrait of Nick Cave, Nadezhda Polovtseva, 2017 | SeanKelly

Nick Cave has been more vocal in the past few years about his identity beyond his iconic Soundsuits. It was a treat to see Wiley posing Cave in the style of the Nadezhda Polovtseva portrait, that classic Charles Francois Jalabert three-quarter pose, with frontal depictions of the subjects’ face and hands giving us a more relaxed version of the man we know but rarely see.

*Kudos to SeanKelly for putting all the social media tags you need for each artist on their gallery tags.

 

Artist: @KehindeWiley

Gallery: @SeanKellyNY

 

Tala Madani | Three Guests, 2017 | Oil on Linen

Tala Madani | Three Guests, 2017 | Pilar Corrias

I remember the first time I heard of Mandani’s work — from a New Yorker article entitled, “The Charming Disgusting Paintings of Tala Madani”, a quiet bomb of words to amass a commentary on her provocative and sometimes undressed discourse on cultural and sexual identity  The Iranian-American artists’ recurrent motifs usually include men in submissive, vulnerable, satirical stereotypical predicaments.  Three Guests seemed a slight deviation, it stopped me in my tracks, as I tried to figure out how the conversation might have changed.

 

Artist: @talamadani

Gallery: @Pilarcorrias

 

Pedro Cabrita Reis | Still Life with Anchor and Rope, 2017 | enamel on Plexiglas, found door frame, found anchor and rope

Pedro Cabrita Reis | Still Life with Anchor and Rope, 2017 | Peter Freeman, Inc.

Reis’s Who’s Afraid of the Red #2 (Lisboa) was my first official swoon over the artists’ continued opus with found objects.  The transformative nature of the objects into works of contemplation and curiosity draw you in and make solid testimonials of the necessity of having a bare all-white wall on which to hang them.

 

Artist: Pedro Cabrita Reis happily has no social media outlets

Gallery: @Peterfreemaninc

 

Do Ho Suh | Hub, Wielandstr. 18, 12159 Berlin | Polyester fabric, stainless steel

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This past summer, I missed the Do Ho Suh Passages exhibition at Victoria Miro. I resolved myself to accepting that seeing it in photographs was enough.  I was wrong.  These translucent fabric passages are built from polyester fabric sculpted around thin stainless steel piping. The different colored passages represent various spaces around either world, creating a journey of migration representing the connection of living spaces shared across global cultural groups.

Artist: Do Ho Suh

Gallery: @VictoriaMirogallery

 

Lisa Yuskavage | Ludlow Street, 2017 | Oil on Linen

Lisa Yuskavage | Ludlow Street, 2017 | David Zwirner Gallery

I love the fresh feeling I get from Yuskavage’s paintings, her use of classical techniques to depict taboo subjects are done without blushing.  Her touches of color to enhance normal intimacy feel like an onrushing of rebellious and revolutionary coupling.

 

Artist: @Lisayuskavage

Gallery: @Davidzwirner

 

Toyin Ojih Odutola | Through Line, 2017 | charcoal, pastel and pencil on paper

Toyin Ojih Odutola | Through Line, 2017 | Jack Shainman Gallery

Toyin Ojih Odutola is this year’s shining star and art media darling. Her focus is on the sociopolitical construct of skin color through her multimedia drawings, explore her personal journey of having been born in Nigeria then moving and assimilating into American culture in conservative Alabama.

 

Artist: @toyinojihodutola

Gallery: @JackShainman

 

 

A Turrell Trick of the Eye

 

Dissolve (Curved Wide Glass), 2017 Collection of Hudson C. Lee © James Turrell, Photo by Florian Holzherr

 

There really are only two types of Turrell people: The Believers and the Unimpressed. Even then, I remain unmoved in my theorizing they just haven’t met their Turrell moment yet.

My first experience with Turrell was at one of his Skyspaces.  No art adorns the walls; it was a simple white room lined with wooden benches. People causally strolled in with pillows and yoga mats, stretching out across the benches, positioning themselves comfortably on the floor.  And then the show started.

In a Turrell Skyspace, an aperture in the ceiling is slowly revealed, carving out a small piece of sky as the surrounding ceiling is cast with a symphony of light–colors soft and pale – intense yet warm, continually evolving. As they change so it seems does the color of the sky. We refer to them as Turrell colors–everything bathed in his light looks celestial, and surreal.

At some point, you lose your grip on what expanse is the sky or the boundary above your head. perception can lose its bearing and wander outside the realm of true north for however long Turrell intends his trip to last.  Turrell once said in an interview, “I can make the sky any color you choose.”

Raethro II, Magenta (Corner Shallow Space), 1970 Collection of Myffanwy Anderson
© James Turrell, Photo by Florian Holzherr

 

Off of Route 2, in the sleepy town of North Adams, Massachusetts, MASS MoCA is currently exhibiting Into the Light, a James Turrell retrospective bringing together light installations from every stage of the 74-year-old artist’ five-decade career.

Using his background in psychology and mathematics, and years of knowledge, exploring and manipulating the ways people’s eyes and brains process light and space, he reigns as a Master Welder of Illusion.

The relationship between perception, light and time is intimately explored in his installations. For some, the absence of physical art such as paintings or sculpture in his work, begs the question of whether it can really be considered as an art form. Turrell has often acknowledged this disconnect in contemporary art between the audience and the artist; “Generally, audiences are looking towards what they like, and I can tell you, that’s the last thing on an artist’s mind… I don’t know if I believe in art. I certainly believe in light.”


James Turrell: Into the Light (Installation view), 2017
© James Turrell, Photo by Florian Holzherr

There are nine Turrell rooms to experience in the expanded exhibition space of MASS MoCA’s newly opened, Building 6. Perfectly Clear (Ganzfeld), a two-story installation, is hands-down, the centerpiece of the retrospective.

Early in his career, Turrell conducted experiments based on the Ganzfeld effect, (from German, for “complete field”) where the viewer experiences a loss of depth perception caused by exposure to an unstructured, uniform field lacking aural or visual stimulation, as in a whiteout. To date, Perfectly Clear is his largest Ganzfeld room by volume.

Upon entering the room, you are given paper booties to wear.  Attendants escort you up a flight of stairs to a massive opening with curved walls. You step into a white void gradually filled with light and changing colors. It quickly becomes difficult to discern where the walls begin and the ceiling ends, creating a feeling of walking toward what seems a mesmerizing endless expanse.


Perfectly Clear (Ganzfeld), 1991 Gift of Jennifer Turrell
© James Turrell, Photo by Florian Holzherr

 

A Turrell trick of the eye remains far more scientific than the surreal calming meditations his spaces might suggest. The sensory deprivation experiment Hind Sight (Dark Space)1984, guides the viewer through a dark corridor with the help of handrails into an even darker chamber. Devoid of any visual stimuli it’s all at once disorienting. Once seated, (yes, those handrails lead to seats), the viewer spends 10 to 15 minutes waiting for their pupils to fully dilate, at which point they begin to notice the faint presence of a dim light. The space is not about what one is supposed to see but the experience of what Turrell describes as “seeing yourself see”.

Afrum, 1967, a projection on loan from the Guggenheim, is one of Turrell’s earliest works on view. The piece uses light as a sculptural medium. Light is projected from a corner of the room near the ceiling, casting a shape on the opposite side of the room, as a white cube seems to float in the corner of the room.

Afrum (Projection), 1967

Collection of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum

© James Turrell, Photo by Florian Holzherr

 

Into the Light, will remain on long-term view at MASS MoCA. Making reservations for timed entry into Perfectly Clear, and Hindsight through the museum’s website is highly recommended.

Philly Flashes Its Revolutionary Teeth with a Street Art Exhibition ft. Local Artists

Today at the South Street HeadHouse Shambles, Visit Philly held a press conference to announce the launch of a 6-week art exhibition called Revolutionary: A Pop-Up Street Art Exhibition.

Revolutionary will be a free, six-week exhibition featuring 13 works of art that interpret the spirit of revolution at 13 different sites throughout Philadelphia’s Historic District.

The street art exhibit inspired by last months’ opening of the American Revolutionary Museum, seeks to tie together Philadelphia’s rich historical stories with its vibrant neighborhoods.

Meryl Levitz – CEO of Visit Philly, lead the brief press event, heralding the exhibitions draw; “It’s a great opportunity for our local artists to push the boundaries and make some statements about change. It gives locals and visitors alike another fun, free and interesting way to explore Philadelphia’s Historic District – the original city.”

Revolutionary is funded, in part, by three grants awarded to Visit Philly’s Historic District campaign. The artworks will appear indoors and outdoors at selected 13 innovatory sights and attractions from May 25th throughout Philadelphia’s annual Welcome America Festival cumulating July 4th.

The exhibition was curated by Conrad Benner, the founder, and editor of street art photo-blog streetsdept.com.  Benner, a foremost authority on documenting Philadelphia’s street art culture selected thought-provoking local artists/activist like Michelle Angela Ortiz, Shawn Theodore, IshKnits, and Calo Rosa to lead the way.  Benner will also moderate an artists’ panel at the National Constitution Center on June 7th, 2017 to further explore the exhibit’s theme.

The more you know:

On Thursday, May 25th there will be an insta-meet with Philadelphia’s influential photographers.  You can follow along with them as they visit the 13 sites (like Spruce Street Harbor Park, Franklin Square, Elfreth’s Alley and more), documenting the works of art, using the hashtag #RevolutionaryArt.

Philly can also interact with the exhibit with an Instagram Contest running from May 25th – 29th.  Take a photo of your favorite piece from the exhibition; include the official hastags #VisitPhilly #HistoricPhilly #RevolutionaryArt for your chance to win 1 of 5 copies of a piece by the artist, Yasmin.

DaKu’s Creative Ad Takeover

daku hyderabald ad takeover

DAKU means bandit…and this one commonly get referred to as the Indian Banksy.  The well-known graffiti artist started tagging in Delhi around 2009 – since then Daku has continued to make a name for himself through his socio-political wheat pastes and the complexities of his ever morphing tag.

Daku a former sign painter in Gujarat, studied typography in Art College.  His street style combines a fascination with typography with oversized messages that intended to “make people think”.

We thought it was time to check back in on India’s popular street artist, and see he’s been up to.  And we’re loving these funny takes on the daily bombardment of billboard ads.  Dubbed The Advertising Project , 5 ads have shown up around Parade Ground and the Khairatabad flyover in Hyderabad.  The project was done in collaboration with St+art India (Dia Metha Bhupal & Daku).

 

Check it: Instagram

 

A post shared by Offical DAKU Page (@daku156) on

A post shared by Offical DAKU Page (@daku156) on

A post shared by Offical DAKU Page (@daku156) on

A post shared by Offical DAKU Page (@daku156) on

They Left Their Hearts at Casa Azul: How The Frida Kahlo Emojis Came To Be

The spell of Frida Kahlo is like a beacon, drawing to her work those who see their anguish, heartache, resilience or celebration of life expressed in her paintings.  Under Frida’s hue, they find inspiration enough to keep, share or pledge allegiance to her memory on bags, t-shirts or pilgrimages to Frida’s beloved home, Casa Azul.

This year Snapchat devoted one of their International Women’s Day filters to Frida—just a click adorned you with her trademarks braids, a crown of flowers, and red lips underneath a proper unibrow.

The multi-generational Mexican artist with a devoted fan base is the inspiration behind 160 new emojis – called FridaMoji – available in App stores now.

Museumito — a father and son design team, designed the first Kahlo-inspired emoji last summer.  They run Cantor Fine Art and wanted to engage their Instagram audience in a fun and memorable way.  That’s how their Fine Art Emoji project came to be.  The Frida emoji was getting the most attention and the project snowballed from there.

We spoke to Museumito about the success of the FridaMoji app and what it took to make it happen.  Our candid conversation delves into the process and rabbit hole that led to an obvious crush on all things Frida.

“The art of Frida Kahlo is a ribbon about a bomb” – Andre Breton

 

Don’t mind me, I’m just going to barrage you with questions.

Why Frida Kahlo? How long did it take to bring this project to fruition? Did you experience any hang-ups along the way?

It was a long and winding path. I think it took 8 months in total with lots of hang-ups. The biggest of which was that we really did not want to do this project. Not with Frida. Not with any artist.

Larry, my dad, and I are just two art history nerds who run a fine art gallery without a ton of resources. To make emojis for someone like Frida would and should take tons of energy, and emotion, and research.

Here is a timeline of hang-ups:

We launched the fine art emoji project in July last year and it got all that attention online. The comments, emails, and phone calls just never really stopped for four months. It seemed the like the more we told people no, the more they pushed back and the more people reached out. Last week I had a meeting with someone who found the emojis for the first time last week. I wonder if it will ever stop.  After 3-4 months, and enough attention from the art history community, we decided we would entertain the idea…but we would give up a lot of control to make our lives easier and partner with a Korean company, whose name I will leave out, to distribute the emojis/stickers worldwide.

I created 25 animated Frida stickers for them, they showed them to the head of Kakao Talk, and that homie was smitten and said that this was no longer for worldwide release but exclusive only for Kakao Talk. Even though we had already signed contracts for worldwide release.  Frida is HUGE in Korea. There are like Frida stores and Frida makeup lines….

They also wanted me to cut out a bunch of references to Frida’s work and replace it with “more useable emotions.” Sooooo I was like naw. Our goal was to spread Frida’s message, not make a ton of money for a company.  So, through some legal ugliness, we yanked our images and started looking for a new partner.

When we found out that the people who make Kimoji worked in the same building as our gallery, we reached out. We were just about to dump the project but, they were like ‘no dude this is cool, and worth it’. They thought about taking it on, but like, one of the Kardashians was getting a divorce or something, and they decided it wasn’t for them and their brand. Those guys’ are really nice and smart and helped us a ton.  We were like, ‘Ok we said we would do this. Let’s just make it us. We will probably lose money on developing it, it will take a lot longer – but we have gone this far.’ I designed the apps and hired a freelancer — had a ton of learning along the way. However, it was really rewarding. Now we have the app that we own, and I didn’t have to compromise on any references that we were allowed to use from Frida Kahlo Corp.

In terms of why Frida… Frida painted around 143 paintings, 55 of those are self-portraits. Each of these self-portraits had its own emotion or style that we could reference for the emoji.

So why Frida? Because we are living in Frida Mania and there were already so many images of her iconic face expressing anguish, beauty, betrayal, love, happiness, passion, pain.

Plus people were already using this amazing FridaMoji around the world.
}:)   No joke. Fridamaniacs throw a unibrow on all their emoticons. I love it.

Frida Kahlo Emojis _The Two Fridas

I read that you spent some time in Mexico City studying up on Frida. Now that you have bonded with her self-portraits, what elements were the most important to retain when creating the corresponding emoji?

Ya. WOOF. Have you been to Mexico City? That place is amazing. Everyone is so scared of it. I loved my time there. Never felt unsafe. Ate such amazing food. I cannot wait to go back.

The process was – we researched Frida, read books, studied all of her work, and watched the movies. I spent two weeks in Mexico City visiting Casa Azul and all the museums to see as much of the work in person as possible. It really is amazing seeing the work in person. Then spent six months working with the Frida Kahlo Corporation making hundreds of emojis.

I mean before really diving deep into Frida, I knew she had a unibrow, flower crown, a pet monkey, and parrot was married to Diego and was often sad. I think for a majority of people she is a unibrow and flower and they know they are supposed to like her. When I started reading about her and her work and her life, it is impossible to not get swept up in it. She was such a remarkable figure. She was so honest and so brave. She was so beautiful and so ugly. She was so tortured and yet found bliss. She was so romantic and always heartbroken. She was so secluded and yet so popular. I just fell in love with her character and her message, in a way I never really have with another artist.

I swear you can stand in front of Los Dos Fridas for days and still not take it all in. Then some of her work is so intimate and small. So when I went to Mexico I just gobbled everything up. Just tried to take in the overall messages and jotted down notes about recurring images or themes beyond a third of paintings are self-portraits. This might sound silly but before I went to Mexico I hadn’t grasped how prevalent or important watermelon was to Frida or what the monkey actually stood for.

Then I came back to the states with a head full of ideas, and I took in every image and painting the Foundation had. Each painting has its own emotion or style or story. So I took all of Frida’s paintings and photos, and thought about what people could actually use in conversations, looked at the most used emoji worldwide, and thought about what could open people up to more of Frida’s work. The process wasn’t necessarily easy. We ended up making over 400 emoji, and only 160 made the cut. Things were cut because they didn’t truly reflect Frida or felt like they wouldn’t be a useful emoji.

So now the question will be can we open up Frida’s legacy to more people?
Can we usher Frida and everything she stood for into this very new medium?
Can she become more than just the iconic flower and a unibrow to her new young fans?

If this is a way to do that….then awesome.

Frida Kahlo Emojis

You mentioned the art history community embracing the project. Could you share a few examples of that?

I can’t track it down because it happened so long ago, but LACMA reposted all the emojis on Facebook after the Artnet article came out and it just went gangbusters. It was as if everyone had to qualify their emails to me with “and you can trust me I’m a museum director” or “and this is coming from an art history teacher.” I loved it. Got lots of emails of die hard Frida fans.  Last week I helped a preschool teacher, and we were in someone’s master’s thesis in Europe.

Projects like this are sustaining new ways of educating and engaging a new generation – what artist is next in the emoji line?

Not sure. To do this right takes a lot of time, energy, and brainpower, and maintaining it takes some work. We have definitely been flirting with other artists estates that we admire, and there is definitely interest.  So we will see. Stay tuned to our Instagram, hopefully, there will be some news soon.

The Cross Stitch Lure of Ulla Stina Wikander

Cross-stitch is the oldest form of count thread embroidery where a stitch formed of two stitches crossing each other (x-shaped) in tiled, raster-like patterns form a picture. In the United States, Loara Standish the daughter of Mayflower passengers Myles Standish and Barbara Standish made what is believed to be America’s earliest known cross-stitch sampler.  Currently housed at Pilgrim Hall in Plymouth, Massachusetts; it is thought to have been stitched while Loara sat in her doorway awaiting the return of a lover, lost at sea.

Artist, Ulla-Stina Wikander admittedly doesn’t cross-stitch; her work is helping uncover old stories set in thread, giving them new life within a different context. Ulla skillfully covers recognizable items whose functional use has evolved or been updated in found cross-stitching.  Some of her more popular pieces pair household items with cross-stitch – both, these unchanging symbols of domestication whose correlation is not unlike stitching – it has not faded away, though it has seen a transformation in the way that people view it.

 

The Cross Stitch Lure of Ulla Stina Wikander

We caught up with Ulla to discuss her process & maybe confess our cross-stitch crush:

I really enjoy how your work updates these older cross stitch pieces.  You’ve given them a new life, managing to keep the essence of them – they’re still a source of expression. What makes the perfect cross-stitch for your projects?

When you source the cross-stitches – are you looking for any particular colors or patterns?

Ulla: The embroidery must be clean (and they usually are, because they are framed) I buy almost every embroidery I come across, but I do not use them if they aren’t well embroidered, good craft. I have some favorite motives and colors and I often use the same patterns for big installations. For example: Typical Swedish small red cottages in the countryside with blue sky and birches. It is a very common pattern in Sweden and a kind of national romanticism. Another type of pattern that I like is the wild animals, like elk, deer and birds, often placed in the wood.

Do you make any of the cross stitching yourself?

No, I do not make any cross stitching or other embroidery. I´m more interested in choosing embroidery and covering the items – to see what is happening with the objects, how they transform. It takes some time to dress up the items, so I don’t have much time left to embroider.

It’s difficult for me to wrap my brain around your thought process on this project.  I mean, I’ve never looked at an item and wondered how I could change the context of it by covering it.  Can you tell us a bit about the first time you covered something?

I started to collect cross stitches 10 years ago, but I didn’t really know what to do with them. I found them beautiful and I admired the work behind. Then my ordinary vacuum cleaner broke down and I had this idea to cover it totally, and then put it against the wall as if I just had walked away. Then I invited some friends and let the vacuum cleaner stay in front, and it was amazing to listen to the reactions. Every body just loved it and they were at the same time a bit confused. I decided to try to cover things from the 70`s, a sewing machine, a typewriter for example, and it went well. It was like you saw the objects for the first time, and you weren’t sure of what you were looking at …In 2014 I had “My previous sewing corner” at Liljevalchs Konsthall and it got some attention.

The Cross Stitch Lure of Ulla Stina Wikander

Did you realize the artistic impact the items would have, or did it start out as a design aesthetic?

I realized the opportunities in an artistic way and decided to continue to explore how the different objects would transform when I “dressed them up”. It had to be ordinary things, that were related to women. I was not sure if it was regarded as art and that was not important to begin with.  It was more important for me, what it aroused in the observer.

I imagine, based on the types of items you choose to work with, that you are a bit of a purist when it comes to design — does that carry over into your everyday design?

Yes, I am a bit of a purist when it comes to everyday design, my home and clothes are clean and simple. I think that the artwork I do, is more a bit like kitsch and sometimes ”to much”. It must also have a sense of humor and recognition.

 

The Cross Stitch Lure of Ulla Stina Wikander

Seeing the pieces in a gallery setting really opens up the interpretation of the work. Each item technically has new life in a sculptural form, showcasing its functional design.

Do you think that viewing it this way places more emphasis on the way you select items now or the way you’d like to exhibit them in the future?

I love the fact that ordinary obsolete things that nobody wants, can be placed in a new context and seen for ”the first time”. I build large installations as well, like armchairs, table, lamps and I would like to see my things in a large exhibition at an Art Gallery.

Can we talk about how seamlessly you cover these items? Where are the seams? How are you achieving that?

I am very meticulous when I cover the objects. If these women has made a perfect embroidery, I would like to make a perfect covering and I make that by sewing and gluing. It is my way of showing respect to these women whose embroideries I cut apart (that hurts, every time).

The Cross Stitch Lure of Ulla Stina Wikander

Ulla’s work is now at Paradigm Gallery + Studio  for “Stitched”, an exhibition focusing on artwork that makes use of embroidery and stitching techniques.

Enjoy these great links to more information on Wikander:

[Website] [Instagram]

Beauty In The Eye of The Beholder – The Embroidery Work of Hannalie Taute

South-African artist, Hannalie Taute’s contemporary take on embroidery happens on rubber stitched together from discarded inner tubes. Her work is dark and edgy. I can only think of words I would not use to describe it, like: sedate, subtle, or delicate.  The faces stitched into the abandoned materials scream at you from their tough leather looking exteriors – this is not your grandmother’s embroidery.

I’m a fan of Taute’s work.  She masters the askew – doming it under bell jars, framing it in silver serving plates, leaving threads to dangle out of her stitching, letting the danger seep into our realm.  I find it difficult to look away from her strangely beautiful things.

As time drew closer for me to call Hannalie for our interview, I imagined a husky sounding woman picking up, morosely explaining her work to me.  All of that dreaming, fell completely out of context when this sweet-sounding mother, who admits she sometimes patterns her work after pop culture offerings, greeted me with a cheerful ‘Hello’.

What we assume is not always so.  Hannalie owns many expressions of her personality which allow her to evolve creatively.  Just like embroidery is composed of more than feminine linens stitched with sweet sayings for butts to sit on.

Before we get started, Hannalie apologetically warns me that Afrikaans is her first language, so the interview might get a bit rocky.  She mentions this after we have gushed on about The Little Prince, Minecraft and an Andy Warhol penis.

I think she did just fine…

This is the first time I have seen embroidery on rubber. To your knowledge, are there any other artists that work with this material?

Hannalie: I know that there is another South African artist, Nicholas Hlobo – part of my inspiration. He works with rubber as well, but he uses it differently.  He takes ribbon and rubber, and makes sculpture & abstract works – but he doesn’t embroider per say. He works with the medium, but I said to myself, ‘I can get a lot of artists that use oil paint, and each one would employ it differently.  I can use rubber as well, but make it my own.’

It is a lovely medium to work with. Even though I’m inspired by his use of rubber, our process and concept is very different.

That is what’s lovely about inspiration; that spark you can spin into something else.

On average, how long does it take you to complete a piece? I want people to get a sense of how labor intensive your work is.

My huge wall hangings can take up to six months. A smaller work, like the one I sent for the STITCHED show at Paradigm Gallery took about 2 months – that includes sourcing the rubber, cutting the rubber, cleaning the rubber, stitching and framing the piece.

 

What a process … How do you prime the rubber to then begin working with it?

I get it in a tube from the company. Some companies just throw them away, so I go and collect them.  I wash, dry, and polish them before I draw on them.  I don’t have an assistant at the moment, so I do everything myself.

 

Woah.

Yeah.

 

Creep(er) embroidery on rubber, 2017  – now on display at Paradigm Gallery for the STITCHED group show. | Taute explains how Creep(er) self-portrait came to be: “Minecraft is a computer game and my children play it a lot. Apart from Zombies and Skeletons, one can also encounter a ‘Creeper’, and they normally explode. A Creeper can be recognized by its tall vertical structure, and green pixellated skin. I can relate to their need to explode, so I decided to embroider a self-portrait wearing a ‘creeper’ jacket, but instead of holding dynamite or some sort of explosive, I decided to embroider an Andy Warhol inspired-penis.”

 

I’m curious, are you constantly bending your needles trying to pull your thread through the rubber?

I’ve broken a couple of needles…the rubber is not that tough, its’ softer than leather actually. So I don’t need to make my holes beforehand, the needle goes straight through.  I’m struggling to work with fabric at the moment because I’m used to the thickness of the rubber.

How long have you been working with this medium?

I started in 2012 – so a short while ago.  My first Solo Show was called Rubber Ever AfterI’ve got so much to learn still.

There is something macabre about the aurora of your work, which I find quite interesting.  But then, I suppose it might be a bit difficult to go sweet with rubber.

Yeah, all the connotations to bondage and stuff. (laughing)

Maybe ‘sweet and leather is the perfect juxtaposition.

You also draw inspiration from books and your children’s interest. Does each piece start with a particular memory?

I love reading and listening to other people’s stories about their relationships, and such. Even if I don’t find my inspiration directly at that moment, I’ll collect those moments, write out my thoughts and revisit them later.  Mostly, its driven by how I feel at a certain stage.

‘What is essential is invisible to the eyes’ is on display at Paradigm Gallery for the STITCHED group show. | Taute on this piece: ‘What is Essential’ was inspired by The Little Prince – I read it every year at least once. The quote goes, “What is essential is invisible to the eye. It is only with the heart that one sees rightly.”

How has your work been received in South Africa?

Very good… I won my first art award working with rubber. I like it when people come up to me after a show to chat – I’ve had a few great discussions with them about ancient embroidery.

Ancient embroidery? Is this art form older than most realize?

Oh yes.  There’s a pretty good book called Subversive Stitch… you know, men used to do this too and not just women.  The book has a detailed history of how women used needlework in the 18th and 19th centuries. Stitching has such a rich history throughout the world. The origin of it is fascinating.

My mother-in-law does needle work as well. When she sees my work, she gets so frustrated because she believes it must be perfect. If she makes a mistake in her work, she will pull everything out and start again. I don’t allow myself that luxury, I keep on going and working.  Its’ ok to make a mistake and carry on.

Well then, your imperfections make for unique pieces. I really enjoy your sculptural work; they are fascinating and a bit scary. There’s one from your series Implanted Memories that I love – the pig face on the body of a young child.

That’s She Wants to Build a House with Thread.

It is interesting what people find scary.  My children watch monster movies; I remember scary monster stories from my youth. Compared to theirs, my monsters are cute and cuddly.  I’m wondering what is scary out there still?

She Wants to Build a House with Thread, 50 x 30 x 30 cm Medium: Fabric, found object, cotton thread and rubber

 

I don’t know.  Maybe we’re afraid of the ‘imagined threat’. I still get chills when I read older stories from The Brothers Grimm or Hans Christian Andersen.  That’s what I meant when I said I love the scare factor in your work, because they remind me of darker fairy tales – the ones without the cute moral endings. 

I had an exhibition called, The Grimm Needle. I asked people, ‘What did they fear? Could they name a fear for me based on the unknown?’ Their responses were quite interesting. I suppose there is a lot of fear around that – the unknown.

Because you don’t know what to expect. If you can’t prepare for something, then comes the onset of anxiety.

I guess that is why people fear death because it is the unknown.

So many questions swirling around that.

Wonder if I could stitch it…

“Heks/Witch” Altered photograph, cotton thread, rubber and wood. 61 x 42 cm

 

The More You Know:

Ask A Curator: Wassan Al-Khudhairi Talks About The Exciting New Exhibit Third Space At The Birmingham Museum of Art

 

The new contemporary art exhibit at Birmingham Museum of Art, Third Space  borrows its name from philosopher and Havard Scholar, Homi Bhaba‘s term ‘third space,’ which he defines as a space that “challenges our sense of the historical identity of culture as a homogenizing, unifying force, authenticated by the originary past, kept alive in the national tradition of the People.”

Wassan Al-Khudhairi is the Hugh Kaul Curator of Modern and Contemporary Art at the Birmingham Museum of Art; as curator for Third Space, Al-Khudhairi is quite aware of the power of shared experiences.  Her personal experiences growing up in one place and traveling to others color the exhibition.  She reaches, through the selections to explore the commonalities that draw communities together and make them stronger.

Third Space is intended to create a dialogue that allows for the discovery of connections between the American South and the rest of the world,” Al-Khudhairi said. “We hope visitors walk away from this exhibition with the desire to have those important conversations related to the experiences we share.”

We put together a brief Q & A together for Wassan Al-Khudhairi – we hope this will allow the readers to understand some of job responsibilities of a curator and how Third Space came together. 

 

Wassan, can you tell us how the idea for this exhibition come about?

The exhibition idea was inspired by thinking about the Birmingham Museum of Art’s collection and its relationship to Birmingham, the American South, and the Global South. The American South is often discussed within the parameters of the United States of America and within a North-South dichotomy.  I was interested in thinking horizontally and creating an opportunity to have an south-south conversation.  The Global South refers to a loose geographical space, a space that is often a post-colonial space.  I wanted to explore the Museum’s collection through this lens of post-colonialism — a condition that is quite similar in many ways to other places in the Global South.  The exhibition title, Third Space, is a term borrowed from Homi Bhaba a philosopher and scholar who coined the term to describe another space, one where commonalities come together to create an alternative space.  The term felt like the perfect way to encompass the exhibition ideas.

 

What was the largest hurdle in pulling it all together?

Pulling it all together– being sure the exhibition ideas are being communicated to the visitor and creating the conceptual space for people to feel like they can reflect their ideas and experiences onto a work of art.

On another note, the exhibition is open for 2-years and within those 2 years we will have 3 changes in the galleries. The first one takes place this August– many of the large works will remain on view but photographs and works on paper throughout the exhibition will be replaced with other works from the collection.  This will happen 3 times in two years… it was a challenge to think ahead in planning the works that will be on view for example in Fall 2018.

But these changes every 6 months will mean that there will always something new to see for our visitors, so we hope people will keep coming back!

 

How did you go about selecting these works of art?

It’s not such a linear or defined process as you might be imagining. It is more of a constant back and forth between building the framework for the ideas of the exhibition and selecting works that help shape and push those ideas further. It is a back and forth, back and forth until it feels like you have been able to find the right balance.

Wassan Al-Khudhairi Talks About Third Space At The Birmingham Museum of Art

Jose Bedia Mpangui jimagua (Twin Brothers), 2000 (Acrylic and conte on canvas with objects)

Assuming you had more pieces in mind than the show could contain, and how did you narrow your choices?

Its a juggling act– and many different things factor into how to make those decisions. You have to take a lot into consideration and one decision affects another so its a domino effect.  Which works speak to the exhibition ideas the strongest? How works relate to each other in the space? Will the work physically fit in the space? What works will our visitors respond to?

 

What piece do you think will receive the most attention (whether its via social media or conversation gold) and why?

It depends on who you’re talking to or what platform you’re looking at. Contemporary art has the ability to allow for multiple interpretations and what I hope Third Space will illustrate to our audiences is that there’s something very personal about what works you are most drawn to and that you may see something in a work that I don’t– that there are many interpretations and the hope is that all our visitors can find something to relate to in the works of art in Third Space.

 

I thought it was an interesting choice to use perspectives of the selected works for the audio guide, instead of the merely quoting the artist. How did you arrive at that decision?

This was a very deliberate decision that my colleague Angela May and I made– we wanted to include voices of people in the community speaking about the works of art in the exhibition. The hope is that by hearing a ‘non-art professional’ speak about a work of art our visitors will feel empowered to make their own interpretations and speak about the works in the exhibition as well.  We also wanted to weave into the exhibition the voices of people in our community to show that there is no one way to talk about these works of art and that the exhibition should be a place for conversation and sharing of ideas.

 

I noticed a mention for the upcoming video diary allowing for visitors to share their experiences with the exhibition. How will the museum utilize those perspectives?

We aren’t sure yet how we will use these perspective immediately– but including an audio guest book was a way to create another space for visitors to the exhibition to leave behind their story, their voice, their perspective. If we want the exhibition to be a space to share ideas and create conversation then we needed to keep our work by offering the space for that to happen…. we hope it will be ready soon, so if you’ve visited the exhibition already please come back!

If you’re still intrigued, please check out our 10 of our favorite pieces from the exhibition, they’re sure to provoke stirring conversation on the exploitation of people and land, identity and race relations.