According to Aristotle, “the soul never thinks without an image” Image-making and our perceptions of it serve as a way for us to make sense of the world. Through art, people are able to create conceptualizations of their understanding about the specific ways they see the world. Within this body of work, I am making an attempt to articulate the connection between the artistic experience of studying the historical cannon of painting and its benefits to thinking while viewing visual perception as a cognitive activity. More clearly, what is the history in front of me and how do I choose to deconstruct and reconstruct it back together. I’m arguing that artistic activity serves as a form of reasoning and a way to think with the senses, my reactionary way of compositing a painting reflects on my individual, as well as the narrative being influenced by literature. Art can serve as a catalyst for engaging the imagination and exploring novel possibilities as part of the creative process, I used this to my advantage when creating this body of work. Furthermore, I was not interested in the literal, realistic truth, but in tan emotional, atmospheric truth. The geographical influence revolved around questions that concerned the type of individual a place like the Bronx has made or experienced. Exploring the painters’ environment as an influence to leak into the narrative. Allowing some beliefs to influence the practice itself, where the practice was also pushed forward by views and beliefs that are foreign to some in our current time. Lastly, seeing the past through present day lens and format.
Pulling from excerpts from the follow texts as a foundation for relatable narratives:
Ta Nehisi Coates -Between the World and Me
From Niggas To Gods I & II : Akil
Junot Diaz - Drown
Ernesto Quinonez – Bodega Dreams
Invisible Man – Ralph Ellison
This creative process involves making connections, considering relationships, and constructing new ideas out of old imagery and moving them forward into a familiar narrative. This divergent way of thinking was critical to the creation of the work. This body of work in particular was created from a synthesis of shattered fragments that come from the historical cannon of painting, realized in an emergent, often duplicated composition, they arrive at meaning in a very different way--accidentally, capriciously, provocatively, tangentially; even when attempting to be in conversation with the literature.
The reason why I decided to have two pop up shows is because of my roots and influences being from the Bronx. Bridging the gap between communities was my initial goal when proposing this to the dean collection. A pop-up exhibition is a temporary art event, less formal than a gallery or museum but more formal than private artistic showing of work. The idea began in 2007 in NYC where space for exhibiting artistic work is very limited. Although the idea originated from New York City, pop-up exhibitions now occur all around the world. Showing back where my practice first started, and then getting to show in a space that was a safe haven for many of us after-school, the cove basically raised me, a place where people come to give back like Dee, the CEO of Ruff Ryders is only something people only dream about and talk about growing up.
Keith Haring had brilliant words about this constant communication between communities. “I wanted to continue the same sort of communication as with the subway drawings. I wanted to attract the same wide range of people and I wanted it to be a place where, yes, not only collectors could come, but also kids from the Bronx …”. Keeping those words alive, I’d like to continue the trend of mending both communities as a means for elevation. I pitched for two spaces to allow both communities to be of help to one another.