Suné Woods: Aragonite Stars, a five-channel video installation at BRIC’s Gallery, marks Woods’s first solo exhibition in New York. For the duration of the exhibition, BRIC’s subterranean gallery space will be fully covered by tarps for an immersive experience that resembles the depth and darkness of the deep ocean. Woods evokes multidimensional states of existence with video passages of waterscapes, aquatic animals, mythological creatures, and other bodies immersed in water. Touch, intimacy, and connection are conduits to the spiritual, stirring emotion and conjuring the sensual.
The exhibition — which is set in various oceans, rivers, hot springs, and tide pools — examines the belief in many African and Indigenous mythologies that oceans are home to ancestors, a realm in between the living and the dead. Woods’s work also asserts that humans are not superior to other beings. Figures clothed in multicolored fabrics appear as underwater creatures — embracing, tumbling, and reaching towards an unknown depth. The sequencing of the videos follows that of a fragmentary dream or the language of collage, speaking to the interconnectedness of all that is physical.
Foregrounded in Woods’s work is the exploration of Audre Lorde’s seminal essay, “Uses of the Erotic: Erotic as Power,” and the demand to use sensuality and touch as healing modalities. The pairing of a video with a soundscape by Meshell Ndegeocello provides a palpable sense of the power of intimacy — unclothed bodies caress, fingers and mouths touching, as they descend down in a gentle embrace. Woods offers this space to question how feeling, pleasure, and vulnerability with others can not only heal but shape and transform who holds and wields power.
Aragonite Stars is on view at BRIC House (647 Fulton St., Brooklyn, NY 11217) from February 2 to May 8, 2022.
To learn more and reserve staggered entry tickets, visit bricartsmedia.org.
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