Artists Indira Allegra and Chris R. Martin both show work confronting racism and the traumatic violence experienced by Black people in this country.
Allegra’s new iteration of her Open Casket project includes a series of digital projections combined with a selection of weavings. Allegra’s work dissects and calls attention to Blackness, Black grief, and Black life.
Martin’s tapestries depict objects and contemporary symbols of police brutality and systemic racism. His tapestries confront the viewer with its directness, typically presented in a black and white.
Allegra and Martin both sew literal and figurative narratives that highlight trauma, state violence, and ultimately, remembrance.
2 x 2 curator, Ariana Faye Allensworth’s praxis centers around the restorative and liberatory properties of arts, culture, and storytelling. Her approach to curating is informed by her experience in the arts education and social justice arenas. As an activist, she sees the capacity of arts spaces to activate ideas and people around critical issues in ways that traditional modes of activism do not.
ABOUT THE ARTISTS:
Indira Allegra is a recipient of the Oakland Individual Artist (2015) and Queer Cultural Center grants (2014) and has been honored with the Jackson Literary Award (2014), Lambda Literary Fellowship (2012) and Windgate Craft Fellowship (2015). Allegra’s commissions include works for the SFMOMA, de Young Museum, The Wattis Institute, SFJAZZ Poetry Festival, the City of Oakland and the National Queer Arts Festival. Her time-based works have screened at festivals such as MIX NYC (2013), Perlen Hannover LGBT Festival (2010), Bologna Lesbian Film Festival (2010) and Outfest Fusion (2009).
Allegra’s writing has been widely anthologized. She has contributed works to Cream City Review, HYSTERIA Magazine, make/shift Magazine, Konch Magazine and Yellow Medicine Review: A Journal of Indigenous Literature, Art and Thought among others. In 2014, she was the Dr. and Mrs. Ella Tag Lecturer at East Carolina University and a Lylle Parker Women of Color Speaker at the University of Oregon. Allegra has completed workshops and residencies at The Banff Centre in Canada (2012) Ponderosa Center for Movement and Discovery in Stolzenhagen (2016) and Takt in Berlin (2016). She is a 2017 Artist in Residence at Djerassi Residence Arts Program and the Headlands Center for the Arts.
CHRIS R. MARTIN
*Artist bio to be posted shortly.
ABOUT THE CURATOR:
ARIANA FAYE ALLENSWORTH
Ariana Faye Allensworth is a social worker, curator, and arts administrator. She is passionate about creating platforms for artists and communities most affected by injustice or who have historically been excluded from arts institutions as viewers and exhibitors. Her activism explores issues related to spatial and racial justice and the healing power of art making. Allensworth holds a master’s in Social Work from UC Berkeley and a bachelor’s in Urban Studies and African & African-American Studies from Fordham University.
RELATED PUBLIC PROGRAM:
Opening Reception: Friday, September 8, 2017, 6:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.
ABOUT 2 x 2:
2 x 2 is a series of solo exhibitions featuring new work from four accomplished emerging artists based in the Oakland/Bay Area. The program recognizes artistic excellence and supports the freedom to create challenging and noncommercial work.
This program is made possible, in part, through the support of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA).