Xandra Ibarra “Forever Sidepiece”

Knockdown Center

poster for Xandra Ibarra “Forever Sidepiece”

This event has ended.

This will be the first NYC solo exhibition of Oakland-based artist and performer Xandra Ibarra, who also works under the alias La Chica Boom. The exhibition is rooted in Ibarra’s performance practice, extending to sculpture, video, and photographs made between 2012 and 2019, some of which will be on view for the first time. Charged objects like Tapatío bottles, nipple tassels, and cockroaches reappear throughout her work to confront notions of racialized desire and representations of Latinidad, femininity, and queerness.

Ibarra deploys a sharp-witted humor in her work to explore and exploit the condition of the “sidepiece”– a term for a woman whose relationships privilege the physical and take place on the periphery. For Ibarra, however, the sidepiece’s position in the margins enables her to sidestep grand narratives, and she claims the sidepiece as a charged position from which to act.

Performing a spectrum of affects, Ibarra uses her own body and associative objects to destabilize limiting identitarian tropes. In early works, she performs burlesque parodies called “Spictacles,” uses a custom Tapatió strap-on, and sheds a cockroach costume. For later video works, she moves in cyclical and fragmented states to challenge and exceed the gaze. A new body of sculptures combine things like mold, nipple tassels, stripper heels, fluorescent lights, and car parts in order to enliven the bodily attributes of objects, extending the thrust of her performance-based work to sculptural form.

Coursing through this multifaceted body of work is a nuanced conversation that employs humor to address race, sex, and gender, that create pathways for the radical and not-yet-known potentials that are waiting on the sidelines.



from August 29, 2019 to October 27, 2019

Opening Reception on 2019-08-29 from 18:00 to 21:00


Xandra Ibarra

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