Cry of Victory and Short Walks to Freedom: Over you / you
Opening reception October 11th, 6-9 PM
On display from October 11, 2018 through November 10th, 2018.
The Gallery at The Kranzberg, in partnership with For Freedoms' 50 State Initiative, presents 'Cry of Victory and Short Walks to Freedom: Over you / you,' an exhibit by Oscar Murillo, curated by Modou Dieng. On display Thursday, October 11 through Saturday, November 10.
The exhibit consists of over 150 placards, which become the basis for a protest in limbo within the gallery space. Placards are both practical and performative objects, and Murillo plays with these two uses within his installation.
All of Murillo’s placards are highly decorative, each comprised of a chromogenic type print that draws upon multiple sources – photographs of Murillo’s uncle taken for a magazine spread; a still from Murillo’s video "Ramon," which depicts a lottery ticket salesman from La Paila, Colombia; as well as drawings and material from the artist’s studio. Murillo has then painted on to most of the prints, while others are adorned with clay, lace, canvas, hairpieces and found objects from the studio, ranging from prints by the artist to food packaging.
The 50 State Initiative is a new phase of programming at the Gallery at The Kranzberg taking place during the lead-up to the midterm elections. Building off of the existing artistic infrastructure in the United States, For Freedoms has developed a network of artists and institutional partners who will produce nationwide public art installations, exhibitions and local community dialogues in order to inject nuanced, artistic thinking into public discourse. Centered on the vital work of artists, the hope is that these exhibitions and related projects will model how arts institutions can become civic forums for action and discussion of values, place, and patriotism.
"The For Freedoms project, in conjunction with this exhibition, arrives at a time when our democracy is cutting funding for the arts at large, most damagingly in our schools. These actions are in total contradiction with our core values, so to speak — humanity, beauty and the freedom we are all entitled to," says curator Modou Dieng. "While conceptualizing this project in St. Louis, I sought to find a foundation to build upon within the context of our current political climate. I set out to debate with the present state of affairs while still celebrating who we are as creators and mediators. Ultimately, I endeavored to introduce a conversational platform between the art we make and the freedom we seek. Because, after all, the act of doing and making is an act of this freedom."
Oscar Murillo will also be bringing his "Frequencies" project to local schools. A collaboration with students aged ten to sixteen from schools across the globe, the project consists of temporarily affixing canvases to classroom desks; the students are not given any materials or instruction as to what they can and cannot do, thus allowing the canvas to register their daily endeavors and conscious and unconscious interventions. In this age group, Murillo perceives a certain amount of resistance to normative systems of thought, which he sees as a greater link to his own work and practice. By placing canvas on desks and leaving it for a prolonged period of time, the process of sedimentation that occurs not only captures the students’ thoughts and expressions but also chance interventions that are the product of external factors. Frequencies has created a growing network between students from different schools and offers cross-cultural and social insights into youth communities participating in the project. The encyclopedic scope of the project consists of mapping out young students’ experiences across the globe.
Learn more about the 50 State Initiative at forfreedoms.org.
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