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CITIZENS OF MEMORY - Curated by Aindrea Emelife

Featured artists:

Tunji Adeniyi-Jones
Ndidi Emefiele
Kudzanai-Violet Hwami
Rachel Jones
Cassi Namoda
Walter Price
Olivia Sterling

Citizens of Memory seeks to better understand how looking back into the past informs how contemporary artists make their work. Focusing in particular on Black experience through painting, seven artists confront the complicated nature of memory and nostalgia, how they both frame experience and shape artistic practice. Nostalgia is multi-faceted and ever-changing: some aspects are reserved for the privileged, others are deeply personal puzzle pieces that forge who we are. We might yearn to look back to good times but, in their absence, we forge them for ourselves. This group of artists, whether employing visual languages of figuration or abstraction, all explore personal histories and investigate the human body and the forming of identity. The works themselves reckon with a history of art that has often misrepresented or excluded Black subjects and their experiences. With histories full of injustice, for many black people there is little romanticisation of the past and so these artists look back to paint for the future. Inspired, in part, by Claudia Rankine’s rousing book-length poem Citizen: An American Lyric, which is structured as a collection of lived experiences, this exhibition brings together the lives of seven artists, and how their relationships with history, belonging and remembering is exercised on canvas.

The Perimeter, 2021
Limited edition of 100 copies
210 x 210 mm

Citizens of Memory

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