THE LIVING GALLERY BK
August 8th 2021 4-9pm
ARTISTS: Aida Amin, Nicolas Astorga, Owen Bradley, Madeleine Dietrich, Matty Geez, Christina Lucia Giuffrida, Brian Graves, Caitlin Herrschaft, Richelle Kota, quinn mcnichol, Naima Merella, Tifani Truelove, Untitled Queen, Megan Elaine Wirick
Where do we go from here?
We’ve been for a long time in our rooms, on a zoom, rarely leaving spaces that were meant to be temporary or changing. What happens from lingering so long in these spaces, festering in our frustrations, confronting and unraveling so much of ourselves and this world?
During quarantine, we’ve had more time to confront our bodies and our minds, and as we emerge out of the covid cocoon, many of us are more certain, stronger in our understanding of our sexualities, gender identities, our ancestral roots and cultural narratives. Combing through our ideas and experiences with writing, photography, sculpture, drawing, painting and preforming, we walk in the footsteps of many other femmes and queers and persons of color. We don’t want to let that path get weeded over, and though no two experiences were exactly alike, we come together with the hope that what we've learned in this time points direction towards where we want that path to continue on to.
Shift brings together 14 femme, queer or POC artists to share our stories and experiences. Untitled Queen seeks to ignite the power of imagination and visualization for self-empowerment and discovery, dismantling constructed binaries of American body, thought, and ideology through their drag performances and and hand-crafted works. Naima Merella looks to their queer and gender-non-conforming African and Indigenous ancestors to learn their stories and radiate their energy through their flowing depictions of them.
Some of us are responding by taking a closer look at the experience of quarantine: Richelle Kota’s digital collages considers interior spaces and intimate relationships to depict the loneliness felt as a member of a deteriorating marginalized community; Aida Amin’s photo series document their time in quarantine, focusing on the stillness of that time, and Caitlin Herrschaft’s meditative mark-making outlines feminine figures who find solace in their time spent alone.
Others let their dreams for future utopian experiences fuel their work: Matty Geez large-scale desert-scene sculptures beg for queer visibility in a binary-gendered culture; Christina Lucia fantasizes intimate love scenes in outdoor settings. Tifani Truelove seeks healing through the divine: her works create sacred space for women to move into their inner Priestess through intuitive artistic movement and divine feminine spirituality. quinn mcnichol relies on the ritual of tarot to find magic in their daily experiences of changing consciousness.
For some, the act of creating itself is a means of healing. Owen Bradley repeats brightly colored patters and shapes as meditations on grief-dreams; Madeleine Dietrich uses various drawing materials to visually diarize their grief and life experiences; Megan Elaine Wirick’s intimate sexual paintings seek space for desire and pleasure after trauma. Brian Graves expresses themes of mental health, gender identity and bodily experience through nature symbolism in his recent volume of poetry Peaches. And Nicolas Astorga seeks a more casual and intimate depiction of sex in his photo series IM STILL HARD 4 U.