Over My Black Body
Spike is pleased to invite you to
OVER MY BLACK BODY
Organized by Anaïs Castro and Eunice Bélidor.
The history of black bodies is one of long struggle for liberation from superseding regulating white power structures. Viewed as a commodity during colonial times, the black body is the blood, sweat and tears behind the development of America’s first transnational industries: sugar canes, cotton, tobacco, etc. Black bodies continue to be heavily codified in contemporary societies. "Over My Black Body" is a collaborative project that acknowledges the lasting battles against the policing of black bodies and affirms the resolute rejection of the costumes imposed on them while denouncing with insurgence the impunity given to institutionalized violence. This first iteration of the project includes the presentation of two videos by Amartey Golding (UK) and Juliana Huxtable (USA) and brings the two artists together in conversation with Berlin-based curator Mohammad Salemy.
"Chainmail" (Golding) and "A Split During Laughter at the Rally" (Huxtable) both draw portraits of disparate communities and address questions of homophobia and intolerance, however, the aesthetic strategy of each artist is resolutely different. Golding plays on the juxtaposition of contrasts to turn on its head what initially seems like a threatening underground gathering into a supporting community of men cheering for their fellow’s triumph. In opposition, Huxtable taps into aesthetics of conspiracy and American paranoia and draws from the current framework of political unrest and community mobilization. The characters’ conversations and monologues move through several topics and various events which ultimately question whether the tools for democratic liberation, including the beat to which the characters are singing, are not in fact just another instrument of oppression.
AMARTEY GOLDING is a multimedia artist whose work explores mankind's most basic motivators and the many ways they manifest within the individual and wider society. During his childhood, Golding’s family moved house regularly, not only to various contrasting communities in London but also overseas to Ghana, West Africa. These experiences of continuous fluidity and movement have undoubtedly influenced Golding’s work. Golding attended Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design, and has exhibited in the Middle East and Europe with solo exhibitions in the UK, Dubai, Germany and Denmark.
JULIANA HUXTABLE is an artist, poet, performer, and DJ who often uses her own body, gender fluidity, and identity as her primary subject. Spurred by a diaristic impulse, she reflects upon her gender transition and often links her own physical evolution to a dialogue concerning avatar, science-fiction, radical black and queer movements, and aboriginal tribes, among other social phenomena. Drawing on life experiences and inspired by Internet communities, Juliana Huxtable strives to create safe spaces, address anxieties, and cultivate a sense of inclusivity through her work.
MOHAMMAD SALEMY is a Canadian artist, critic, and curator who holds an MA in critical curatorial studies from the University of British Columbia. He has shown his works in Ashkal Alwan’s Home Works 7 (Beirut) and Witte de With (Rotterdam). His writings have been published in e-flux, Flash Art, Third Rail, Brooklyn Rail, Ocula and Spike Art Quarterly, and he has curated exhibitions at the Morris and Helen Belkin Art Gallery, Access Gallery, and Satellite Gallery in Vancouver as well as Transit Display in Prague. In 2014, he organized the "Incredible Machines" conference. Salemy’s curatorial experiment “For Machine Use Only” was included in the 11th edition of Gwangju Biennale - 광주비엔날레 (2016). He currently co-organizes the education programs of The New Centre for Research & Practice.