Public Displays of Privacy
Curated by Martina Dodd
Mentor curator, Thomas Drymon
September 9 - October 16, 2016
Opening Reception: Friday, September 9, 7-9 pm
Performance + Second Viewing: Thursday, September 29, 6:30-8:30 pm
Artist Talk and Closing Reception: Sunday, October 16, 5 pm
Nakeya Brown, Adrienne Gaither, Danielle Smith, Khadijah Wilson
DC Arts Center presents Public Displays of Privacy, an exhibition featuring four local women artists who explore the complexities of identity, memory and subjectivity in relation to Black
Womanhood. Performance + second veiwing on September 29 at 6:30 pm: Special performance of Communal Restriction by Khadijah Wilson and Lionel Frazier White. Bond together by a mask constructed by Wilson, the two struggle for independence as they visually transform from collective unit to individual entities, forcing their viewers to reexamine the narratives of self and community.
With a particular focus on hair, the body acts as a site of agency for Nakeya Brown, as her photographs draw attention to the ways beauty standards can reflect politics, cultural memories and racial identities. Khadijah Wilson’s installation physically binds her subjects together using deconstructed material and applies pressure to their communal existence, causing them to literally tug at their freedom. Their strained necks mimic the double burden of race and gender experienced by Black women, while their limited mobility hints at a loss of individual agency.
Using images of family members as her source of inspiration, Adrienne Gaither investigates the social
constructs and constraints of familial ties by “merging traditional techniques of painting and digital
manipulation.” Danielle Smith’s soft brush strokes portray intimate moments of joy, pain and vulnerability as she distinguishes between reality and perception. This group exhibition blurs the lines set in place to demarcate what is kept private and what is for public consumption and examines how personal and collective experiences shape our existence