I have been fortunate to participate in numerous artist talks over the past several years, which have been illuminating in multiple ways, connecting with others, getting an insight into their work, sharing my own, furthering my experience in talking about it, reaching a wider “audience”.
Here are two of these talks, group conversations between artists, curator and facilitator, online through Zoom, sharing about specific works in specific exhibitions.
In the spring of 2022, Hera Gallery and Educational Foundation began to talk about our 50th anniversary as one of the first women-run artist cooperatives to open in the United States in 1974. Shortly after this discussion, the leak started to circulate that Roe v. Wade would be overturned before its own 50th feminist anniversary in 2023. The story came out around Mother’s Day. A group of us at Hera started to talk not only about the potential ramifications of the ruling, but also about motherhood itself. While frequently idealized in public discourse, we wanted to look at motherhood in all its complexity, as well as at the absence of desired motherhood. Throughout 2022 the abortion rights discussion swelled and ultimately burst into the Dobb's Decision. Hera’s conversation transitioned to ask, what happens now? Hera began looking for works which spoke to the overturn of Roe v. Wade in the virtual exhibition Objects of Agency, currently on view at heragallery.org. However, our conversation circled back to the bigger picture on the choice of motherhood. We wanted to hear voices not only from the perspective of mothers, but of all the people surrounding mothers and who could be mothers; including their children, partners, and even their parents. We were interested in the voices of mothers who were not born female cis gender, mothers who raise their children alongside other mothers, and everyone else who does not fit the traditional or stereotypical mother mold…..Nadiah Rivera Fella from the Cleveland Museum of Art (was) juror for the show. Rivera Fella was part of the curatorial team of the 2021/2022 exhibition Picturing Motherhood Now at the Cleveland Museum of Art and thus made an excellent choice for a juror of Oh, Mother.
Participating Artists: Beizar Aradini, Sybil Archibald, Cassie Arnold, Raissa Bailey, Brandin Barón, Jasmine Best, Shweta Bist, Desirae Brown, Joanne Delmonico, Jessica Dietz, Debra Disman, Rebecca Ford, Raquel Fornasaro, Bonnie Jaffe, Marcella Kelley, Leah Klister, Moriah LeFebvre, Roberta Levitow, Madeleine Lord, Caroline McAuliffe, Haley Neville, Linda Plaisted, Sylvie Redmond, Sawyer Rose, Christina Santner, Ellen Shattuck Pierce, Leslie Sills.
Text/Message focuses on how we use text in fine art. Whether painting, sculpture, mixed media, video, digital, the use of text plays an integral part in telling stories. It can add a poetic layer, or a humorous anecdote. Text can challenge societal assumptions, activate our inner desires or crusade for long held beliefs. Text also lies.
Curated by Kristine Schomaker