“I come to this place” Exhibition

Smack Mellon

poster for “I come to this place” Exhibition

This event has ended.

Curated by Eva Mayhabal Davis

Smack Mellon presents I come to this place, a group exhibition that explores abstraction in art as a chain of histories that align, unpack, communicate, and translate connections. Twelve artists present their sensibilities through installations, multi-media work, paintings, and sound. Inherently, each artist nods at the Indigenous knowledge that is explored with an acute sense of line, rhythm, and place. Each work conscientiously considers foundational materials that uphold values of storytelling, nature, and spirituality.

In this exhibition, the gallery becomes a portal as each work presents an awareness of identity and displacement, synthesized with historical narratives, socio-politics, and environmental circumstances.

As such the title of the exhibition is an introduction. It is a phrase that artist Cannupa Hanska Luger employs as a greeting, as a statement, and as a placement. We are all invited to acknowledge how and where we have come to be, collectively capturing a moment so that we are no longer strangers and our presence today and yesterday are intertwined with tomorrow; we share this greeting to pursue a greater future together.

Taking inspiration from avant-garde modernists, Uruguayan artist Joaquin Torres-Garcia, who drew emphasis from “the spirit of synthesis,” which he defined as the synchronization of the ancestral and the modern, threading interconnected sources, “this spirit allows the work to be seen in its totality as a single order, a unity.” (The Arcadian Modern, 1930). Contemporary artists have been tasked with the construction of a deep visual language that weaves fragmented histories and present stories.

Future generations will look back on our visual vocabulary and see the links from further past to their present as embodied in form, composition, and materials translated as rituals and customs with human, spiritual, and natural origins. These works reveal the persistence of ever present familial and spiritual ties to see and experience forms that interconnect in everyday life.

We acknowledge the traditional, ancestral unceded territory of the Canarsie and Lenni Lenape peoples, among many other peoples, on which we are learning, creating and organizing today.


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