Spirits of Saturn

2016

SKIN Exhibition

Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery (LAMAG) 

Los Angeles, CA

What is the installation about?

Installation, 2016

The Spirits of Saturn installation addresses the lack of diversity in the authorship of identity representation. Exploring the impact this has had on our collective consciousness in particular to understandings of race, gender, the performance of masculinity, and the revolving and often destructive cycles of objectification and exploitation that often accompany the exclusion of difference.

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Spirits of Saturn (Installation) 2016, Mixed Media (Video Sculpture, Speakers, Video Projections,  Audio), Dimensions Variable

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Spirits of Saturn (Installation) 2016, Mixed Media 

The video Spirits of Saturn is an audio/visual collaging of internal feelings and dialogues. The objects are reflective of more outward expressions. Each object is affixed with a reflective surface forcing the viewer to see themselves physically reflected in the objects they are viewing. The objects in the installation each display blank geometric shapes that are continuously interrupted by video and audio clips. The clips are appropriated from viral videos, TV clips, and films. They punctuate feelings or thoughts that can result

from constantly encountering dismissals, inherited perceptions, and misrepresentations of one's self. I am interested in the internal tensions and discourses that come with navigating the conceptual, representational, and symbolic landmines of mediated interactions and representation. 

Installation Images: Spirits of Saturn 

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Specimen
Specimen

2015 Two-way mirror, speakers and video clip of dying insect, audio clip of James Baldwin

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Axis of Ego: When & Where I Enter is a multi-media installation that opened at the FAR Bazaar Alternative Art Fair & Art Collective Festival at Cerritos College in 2017

Looking at elements within the installation: The Video

Spirits of Saturn, 2015

Appropriation art collage piece

work-in-progress 

 

The video Spirits of Saturn explores notions of Whitening and the removal of perception, distinctiveness or individualism as the road to consciousness

For more information on the video series Spirits of Saturn click here

Looking at elements within the installation: The Sculptures 

The installation also consisted of a series of multi-media objects. 

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Specimen (video still) 2015 Two-way mirror, speakers and video clip of dying insect, audio clip of James Baldwin

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Specimen 2015 Two-way mirror, speakers and video clip of dying insect, audio clip of James Baldwin

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Specimen 2015 Two-way mirror, speakers and video clip of dying insect, audio clip of James Baldwin

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Specimen (video still) 2015 Two-way mirror, speakers and video clip of dying insect, audio clip of James Baldwin

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Specimen, 2015

two-way mirror, speakers, and a video an audio clip

 

spec·i·men ˈspesəmən/ noun As defined in Wikipedia A limited quantity of something, which is intended to be similar to and represent a larger amount of that thing.

 

 The pedestal has a two-way mirror embedded into its surface; through the transparent portion of the mirror plays a video clip of a dying insect impaled by a push pin in conjunction with an audio clip of author and activist James Baldwin taken from an interview in the spring of 1963 in which he addresses who the word Nigger really refers to.

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It Was Always You, 2017 2016 Frame, monitor, video clip of killer bees

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It Was Always You, 2017 2016 Frame, monitor, video clip of killer bees

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It Was Always You, 2017 2016 Frame, monitor, video clip of killer bees

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It Was Always You, 2017 2016 Frame, monitor, video clip of killer bees

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It Was Always You, 2016

Plexi, wood, LCD monitor

 

Exploring the notion of a diminishment or erasure of humanity (especially as it relates to African American males). The piece It Was Always You is inspired by the image of the characters Daniel Robitaille from the 1992 American horror film Candyman written and directed by Bernard Rose.  In Candyman, the 1992 American horror film written and directed by Bernard Rose, the character Daniel Robitaille is the son of a slave and a commissioned portraiture painter.  Because he falls for the daughter of his patron he is killed by an angry lynch mob.  Having been covered with honey and attacked by bees, it is a mirror that holds the tortured, hateful soul of the Candyman.

 

The image of killer bees often appears within my films in reference to the “Killer Bee Scare” of the ’90s when African and European bees were crossbred in an effort to increase production. This led to claims that the bees became dangerously aggressive and hostile. 

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Your Pigmentation Ain't Shit 2014 Shoe polish, plexi, motion sensor and audio clip

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Your Pigmentation Ain't Shit 2014 Shoe polish, plexi, motion sensor and audio clip

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Your Pigmentation Ain't Shit 2014 Shoe polish, plexi, motion sensor and audio clip

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Your Pigmentation Ain't Shit 2014 Shoe polish, plexi, motion sensor and audio clip

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Your Pigmentation Ain't Shit, 2014

Shoe polish on panel, speaker with audio

 

A minimalist square made with shoes polished layered on a panel. The panel also has a speaker which plays audio snippets from a viral video of a passenger on a subway train angered by another passenger. At timed intervals, the painting blurts out a composition of the woman’s angered responses to her perceived dismissal throughout the gallery space. The target of the painting's anger is unclear; seemingly yelling at the viewer, the gallery space, as well as the artwork it shares space with.

For Audio from Your Pigmentation Ain't Shit, 2014:

00:00 / 00:09

Click Here

Some Key References for Your Pigmentation Ain't Shit:

A visitor looks at Malevich’s ‘Black Square’ at Tate Modern (Micha Theiner)

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Kasimir Malevich, Black Square, 1915 version 79.5×79.5cm, collection: State Tretyakov Gallery, Moskow

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Alphonse Allais, from Album primo-avrilesque, 1897, image: wikipedia

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A visitor looks at Malevich’s ‘Black Square’ at Tate Modern (Micha Theiner)

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Kazimir Malevich’s Black Square (1915) is often credited with being among the first abstract works ever painted.  In 2015 the State Tretyakov Museum in Moscow announced they found a caption-like text on the face of Kasmir Malevich Black Square painting that is believed to read, “Battle of the Negroes in a dark cave” it’s speculated to be in reference to a racist joke in a monochrome painting by Alphonse Allais, a French writer, humorist and cartoonist popular in Russia at the time Malevich made the work. In 1882, Allais’ “Battle of negroes in a deep dark cave at night”.  My interest in alluding to this history is to highlight an inherited social perspective on race relations that the conceptual and foundational history of abstraction is built on.