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Sunlight drifts across a set of white blinds in dappled patterns as if it had been dispatched from a stellar heaven but then held in check by dense, dark foliage — until those boughs and branches are intermittently shouldered aside by soft breezes. Seeing this play of light is such a quintessential experience of late afternoon summer in a succulently green place that I can almost smell grass and hear the rushing of the wind through leaves. And now I am a boy again, curled on my bed by my window sill, basking in that daylight, watching the leaves on the tree just in front of my house being toyed with by the moving air, and the light, here and there, gurgling through.
But there is no sun visible in the sky at 5:30pm when I visit bitforms gallery. It is the deep dark of winter, thus the sun set some time ago. It is cold. I am surrounded by concrete, glass, plastics, iron, and steel. Yet, standing in the small antechamber at the front of the gallery, the branches and boughs still shift and sway, and the light that makes it through quietly mesmerizes me. The artwork “New Dawn” (2017) really is only fiberglass and brass, fitted with some clever electronics and LEDs, and it’s profoundly sad that this work is so convincing. This piece of technological fool’s gold, created by the UK-based practice UVA, is precisely the kind of work that we will look to make and share once we have thoroughly laid waste to the planet and become even more enmeshed in the global matrix of abstracted electronic participation. At that point, most of what the world will have access to is this kind of simulacra, rather than the lived experience.
“New Dawn,” which is a part of UVA’s Counterparts exhibition, is not merely a harbinger of the coming ecological dystopia; it anticipates what our art will look like when enough glacial ice has melted to cause the majority of the Nile Delta to sink underneath seawater, and temperatures rise so high that entire regions of the planet become uninhabitable for us. It is this kind of art that will touch our nostalgia at the bone, helping us recall the time when we looked around us, at every place that sunlight reached, and thought that summer would last our entire lives.
“Black infants in America are now more than twice as likely to die as white infants—11.3 per 1,000 black babies, compared with 4.9 per 1,000 white babies, according to the most recent government data—a racial disparity that is actually wider than in 1850, 15 years before the end of slavery, when most black women were…
he ownership of images has a long and nuanced legal history, which has evolved dramatically in recent years as cultural standards and photographic technologies have rapidly advanced
The show, which honors the 50th anniversary of an exhibition history once ignored, continues a series of projects documenting Wilmington’s contemporary art scene.
Renty and his daughter Delia. Renty was an enslaved African, kidnapped from the Congo, sold and forced into slave labor on the South Carolina plantation of B.F. Taylor
What is the relation between possessing a person, possessing their image, and dispossessing their progeny
As a scholar of African American history and photography whose work has focused on the status of violent images in museums and archives, I fully support the validity of Ms. Tamara Lanier’s claim and the amicus brief.
Two K-12 art teachers will each receive a $1,000 cash gift and an additional $500 to put toward classroom art supplies. Nominations are due October 31.
The daguerreotypes of Renty Taylor, Delia, Drana, Alfred, Jack, George Fassena, and Jem remained in an unused storage cabinet until 1975, when it was discovered by an employee of the Peabody Museum.
I am writing in support of the amicus curiae brief submitted by Professor Ariella Aïsha Azoulay of Brown University for the full restitution of the daguerreotypes of Renty Taylor and his daughter Delia, currently held by Harvard University, to their familial descendant, Tamara Lanier.
We cannot be indifferent to the long-lasting effects of photography. The photographs at the center of Lanier v. Harvard are relentless in making Renty and Delia Taylor work and perform as slaves. The pain inflicted on them has not ceased. Photography has the capacity to propagate harm, and we have the moral obligation to interrupt…