Gallery Programs (2010 - 2011)
2010 - 2011
The Franklin Humanities Institute's new home in the Smith Warehouse includes a small art gallery. In 2010-11, the space will be devoted to a year-long exhibition series on contemporary African American, Caribbean and Diaspora arts, with shows curated by or featuring the works of Duke humanities and arts faculty. In future years, the space will the central feature of a Humanities Laboratory focusing on the arts/performance/the digital.
Current & Upcoming ExhibitsApril 22 – June 10, 2011
A video installation with texts by Duke students in the Department of Art, Art History & Visual Studies - Curated by Richard Powell
Artist's Talk & Opening reception: Please check "Events" sidebar to the right for date, time, and other information.
Sonia Boyce’s two-screen video, Crop Over, visually samples the many traditions, histories and cultural practices that inform this Barbadian festival, culminating with the carnivalesque parade known as Kadooment. Presenting a wide range of related performances, some real and some staged by the artist, Boyce constructs a pseudodocumentary, pseudo-pantomime collage of events that subtly reveals the multiple dimensions of this creolized spectacle, deliberately building up layers of interpretation and presentation that seek to identify, historicize and problematize these cultural icons. Unlike many of the pre-lenten carnivals in the region, Crop Over celebrates the end of the sugar cane season, and directly ties the subversive elements and inversions of traditional carnival to the sugar economy of the Caribbean, and its historical dependence on slavery. While traditional representations of Carnival by artists such as Belisario are marked, according to Stuart Hall, by what is not said, Boyce’s Crop Over is motivated by what remains unexplained.
Sonia Boyce is a British Afro-Caribbean artist, living and working in London. She studied at Stourbridge College in the West Midlands. She works across a range of media including photography, installation and text. She came to prominence as part of the Black British cultural renaissance of the 1980s. Her work also references feminism. Her works are held in the collection of Tate Modern and other major institutions. She was awarded an MBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours List 2007, for services to art.
Curator Richard J. Powell is John Spencer Bassett Professor of Art and Art History at Duke University. More information can be found at http://www.richardjpowell.com.
* Image: Sonia Boyce, still from Crop Over, 2007, Video Installation
Opening Reception: Thursday October 21, 5:30 PM*
Dialogue With Exhibition Artists Fausto Ortiz & Mario Marzan: Friday October 22, 4:30 PM*
* note new times!
The Caribbean artists here articulate a visual poetics about their places in the world, and the world in their spaces. They engage in a visual reading of their experiences of place from various locations, within the region and without. The work of artists, Gelsy Verna, Haitian-Canadian, who 2 years ago, left us prematurely, Trinidadian, Christopher Cozier, Puerto Rican, Mario Marzan and Fausto Ortiz of La Republica Dominicana engage particular tropes common to the region’s socio-cultural practices, its imaginations and its dire ecological and geo-political contexts . These heterogeneous expressions share a common sensibility which is expressed, or so it seems, as a prominent statement about liminal movements- a dwelling in movement- and shape-shifting identities that disclose agonistic existences with things as they are, or have become in an era of entanglement and vulnerability. Caribbean homes are vulnerable spaces. Homes may offer comfort, but in the face of the region’s terrors- hurricanes, earthquakes, natural or sociopolitical disasters, (sometimes occurring simultaneously) and domestic violences-they offer no such guarantees of place. If the Caribbean is a ‘location of unending journeys,’ as Cozier suggests, then these articulations map the routes of the region’s paradoxical imaginaries. They provide a way to locate something that seems always elusive and incoherent. Like creolization itself these imaginaries lend expression to a Caribbeanness in motion, in tension and often in violent articulations.
Curator Michaeline Crichlow is Associate Professor of Sociology and African and African American Studies at Duke University.
* Image: Gelsy Verna, Mississippi Goddamn, c. 1996, Mixed Media on Paper
---December 9, 2010 - January 14, 2011
Pedro Lasch & Esther Gabara
Missing Reflection (Naturalizations Series)
Opening Reception: Thursday, December 9, 5:00 PM
Holiday Hours: The exhibit is closed from Monday December 20 through Monday January 3
This photography and text-based installation is grounded in a series of workshops that Gabara and Lasch held in Port-Au-Prince, Haiti in the context of the first edition of The Ghetto Biennale, which took place between November 28 and December 18, 2009. Pedro Lasch is Assistant Professor of the Practice in the department of Art, Art History and Visual Studies at Duke University who has shown his work internationally. Esther Gabara is Associate Professor of Romance Studies, and Art, Art History and Visual Studies at Duke. The group of works to be shown at the FHI is a collaborative project related to the recent Ghetto Biennale in Port au Prince, Haiti. Information on Lasch’s work can be found at the artist's website www.pedrolasch.com; Gabara’s can be found at http://romancestudies.duke.edu/people.
Hope Exhibition Opening Reception
Thursday, January 20, 7-9 pm, John Hope Franklin Center Gallery (2204 Erwin Rd.)
Question Bridge Opening Reception
& Artist's Talk with Introduction by Richard J. Powell
Friday, January 21, 5:30 PM, John Hope Franklin Humanities Institute (Smith Warehouse)
The John Hope Franklin Center for International and Interdisciplinary Studies and FHI will present a collaborative, multi-site exhibition of new and recent works by contemporary visual artist and photographer Hank Willis Thomas.
On view at the Franklin Center Gallery will be the exhibition Hope, a survey show of seven major large-scale photographic works by the artist. On view at the FHI will be Thomas’ collaborative video project which is a work-in-progress Question Bridge: Black Male, which features a question-and-answer dialogue between the diverse members of the U.S. Black Male population, including those from New Orleans, using video as the medium to bridge the various economic, political, social, geographic, and generational divides between Black Males. A second work on view tethered above the FHI will be a large, specially fabricated helium balloon that will be flown above Smith Warehouse for the duration of the exhibition. Special thanks to The Blimpworks, Inc. of Statesville, NC for important technical assistance.
Hank Willis Thomas is a contemporary African American visual artist and photographer whose primary interests are race, advertising and popular culture. He is the winner of the first ever Aperture West Book Prize for his monograph Pitch Blackness (November, 2008). His work was featured in the 30 Americans exhibition at the Rubell Family Collection in Miami as well as in the exhibition and accompanying catalog, 25 Under 25: Up-and-Coming Photographers. He has exhibited in galleries and museums throughout the U.S. and abroad, including the Studio Museum in Harlem; Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco; Wadsworth Atheneum, Hartford, Connecticut; Jamaica Center for Arts and Learning, Jamaica, New York; Artists Space, New York; Leica Gallery, New York; Texas Woman’s University; Oakland Museum of California; Smithsonian; Anacostia Museum, Washington, DC; Bronfman Center for Jewish Life at NYU; National Museum of American History, Washington, DC; and National Portrait Gallery, Washington, DC, High Museum, Atlanta, and Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, among others.
Hank Willis Thomas is represented by Jack Shainman Gallery in New York. Extensive information on his work can be found at http://hankwillisthomas.com. Diego Cortez is an independent curator based in New York. More information can be found at http://www.lostobject.org.
Left of Black: Mark Anthony Neal Interviews Hank Willis Thomas
Friday, January 21, 12:00 PM, John Hope Franklin Center (2204 Erwin Rd.)
Opening reception: Friday, March 25, 6:30pm, FHI Gallery
Artist's Talk: Wednesday, April 13, 5:30pm, FHI Garage
Thus, despite the bland assertions of sociologists, “high visibility” actually rendered one un-visible—whether at high noon in a Macy’s window or illuminated by flaming torches and flashbulbs…
--Ralph Ellison, Invisible Man
It is a truism that light creates space; however, both the absence and the presence of light can create provocative visual effects. With her installation, UltraSuper, Stacy Lynn Waddell employs the power of hyperbole to highlight the connections between blinding light and seemingly absent forms of blackness. As such, she questions and responds to Andy Warhol’s outré productions made in his glittering, 1960s proto-glam loft, the Silver Factory. Characterized by overabundant blasts of light and sheen, floating silver balloons, tinfoiled walls and the sparkle of Superstars, the factory was a place of and for extreme performances. Like an overly lit photographic exposure, it produced a quasi-phosphorescent whiteness that predominated among shades of grey. Such formal properties of light, space, and contrast come to matter in American culture via the reflection that is UltraSuper.
Stacy Lynn Waddell was born in Washington, DC and creates works that structure sites of intersection between both real and imagined realities of American history and culture. After earning her MFA from The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2007, her work has been recognized and exhibited nationally. Waddell has participated in exhibitions at The Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art in Winston Salem, NC, Branch Gallery in Durham, NC, the John Hope Franklin Center at Duke University in Durham, NC, the Weatherspoon Art Museum at The University of North Carolina at Greensboro in Greensboro, NC, The North Carolina Museum of Art in Raleigh, NC, Project Row Houses in Houston, TX, The Studio Museum in Harlem in NY and On Stellar Rays in NY among other venues. During Fall 2010, her first solo museum exhibition The Evidence of Things Unseen, was on view at the Gibbes Museum of Art in Charleston, South Carolina and in January 2011 the exhibition travelled to the Weatherspoon Art Museum at The University of North Carolina at Greensboro in Greensboro, NC. Waddell was named a finalist for The Factor Prize for Southern Art in 2008 and is a 2010 recipient of the Joan Mitchell Painters and Sculptors Grant. She currently resides in Chapel Hill, NC where she is Visiting Faculty in the Art Department at Guilford College in Greensboro, North Carolina.
Jennifer DeVere Brody is Professor of African & African American Studies, Theater and Women’s Studies at Duke. She is the author of Impossible Purities: Blackness, Femininity and Victorian Culture (Duke UP, 1998) and Punctuation: Art, Politics and Play (Duke UP, 2008) both of which explore questions of race, gender, sexuality and performance.