Starion Bank Gallery
It has always been the case that BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) artists always wear two hats at any given time. That of the artist and that of the activist. Their art offers the richest insights into what moments of social justice they are empowering. Whether it be an image of a river from an Indigenous artist or a portrait from a Black woman, these images are constantly provoking, confronting, and confounding expectations.
The exhibition begins by acknowledging that the exasperation levels are high, but for those with a certain racial profile, history and living memory have not yet availed to them moments of tranquility. The works on view illustrate a myriad of sustained engagements with the profound question of what it means to be human. What is it like to BE, EXIST, or take up space as a person of color in sectors with no or minimal representation?
The artists in this exhibition are exploring BIPOC identity and how they each have individually crafted a singular aesthetic of how the language of belonging is empowering. With full awareness that an unpremeditated stroll through a public space could become dangerous for those who are often viewed as the other and intending to challenge that narrative by creating a space where people who identify as BIPOC can freely BE, EXIST. In conjunction with this electrifying visual stroll through vibrant and powerful imagery, the exhibition draws upon GROUP THINK conversational notes, questions, and reflection about BEing and EXISTing.
– Pasteur Mudende
Exhibition Curatorial Team: Pasteur Mudende, Michael Eback, Aluel Macyieck
Museum Partners: Netha Cloeter, Andy Maus
BE, EXIST conversation guide curated by GROUP THINK – Mina Ali, Cali Anicha, Alexandre Cyusa, Josh Hoper, Pasteur Mudende, Barry Nelson, Karis Thompson and Laura Zeiher – in consultation with Netha Cloeter, Aluel Maciek, Wess Philome and Quill River.