Tiff Massey’s hyper-territorialism regarding who can claim Detroit as their home comes into philosophical conflict with some of the culture blending she utilizes in a new body of fiber-based work.
Publishing Problems? Maybe You Need a White Pen Name
Can’t get your latest poetry collection/humor listicle/cyberfeminist comic/experimental haiku manifesto published? Luckily for you, the Asian American Writers’ Workshop has a new tool that will confirm your artistic legitimacy.
What Was Art of the 1990s All About?
MONTCLAIR, NEW JERSEY — To devote a show to an era is to delimit the era in question, carving it off from surrounding epochs and ascribing some measure of thematic or aesthetic continuity to it.
Mixing Racial Messages
Starting with its title, the group exhibition War Baby/Love Child: Mixed Race Asian American Art at Seattle’s Wing Luke museum asks a provocative question: how do those seen by Americans as products of either colonial domination or subversive desire move past those categories?
When Painting Labels Do Their Job
While touring Amsterdam’s Stedelijk Museum last week, I encountered a fantastic label for a painting by Nola Hatterman that did what a good art work label should do, mainly providing the context that augments the experience of looking, while connecting the work to our own time and place.
Canada, the Country that Dare Not Speak Its Name
NORTH ADAMS, Massachusetts — Framed on the faux-log-cabin wall of Kent Monkman’s piece “Two Kindred Spirits” (which depicts the American western characters of Tonto and the Lone Ranger as lovers in a sort of Horatio/Hamlet life-sized diorama death scene) is a hand-embroidered phrase: “The Love That Dare Not Speak Its Name.” This Oscar Wildean quotation also encapsulates the ever-nuanced Canada/U.S. relationship, and may give us a clue as to what’s really up with our neighbor to the north.
Caribbean Black Identity and Sex
MIAMI — Historically, the relationship of the black identity to sex is loaded and remains a deeply complex conversation. Africa’s black identity history is marred by images of the “African Hottentot Venus” Saartjie Baartman who was put on display and sent across the world like a circus animal before being dismembered for study purposes following her death. This sexualized commodification of the human body underpinned the slave trade, which greatly impacted the entire Caribbean region.
Neekid Blk Gurls
Rush Arts Gallery in Chelsea has a well-intentioned but flawed exhibition, titled Neekid Blk Gurls. The show, now on view till January 27, 2012, features artwork from 18 photographers who range in experience and background.
Zine Grab Bag: From Race to NY Pizza
Zines — the independent publications Xeroxed most often by their authors and distributed by small, independent DIY networks — are known for their broad spectrum of topics. They can be about anything and everything, and my 24 hours totally attested to this.
White Like Me
“White Ambassador” is a provocative title for an art work in America and it is the title of artist Nate Hill’s latest work that tackles race.
Learning to Be Canadian Through Art
As an Armenian Canadian living in New York for over a decade, I’m conflicted when it comes to the idea of Canada Day … the question of what it mean to be Canadian pops up now and again.
The Limits of Text and Image: Glenn Ligon at the Whitney
It is perhaps telling that the first piece in the exhibition Glenn Ligon: AMERICA, the most comprehensive exhibition of the artist’s work to date, is not one of the text-based paintings for which he is best known, but “Hands” (1996), a massive canvas tacked to the wall of the exhibition’s entrance with pushpins, bearing the image of outstretched palms against a black background. Drawn from a mass-media photograph of Benjamin Chavis and Louis Farrakhan’s 1995 Million Man March, enlarged to the point of degradation and then screenprinted, what appears here is a copy of a copy of a copy, an image that can no longer articulate what it once represented.