previews

  • Tschabalala Self, Racer, 2018, acrylic, watercolor, Flashe paint, crayon, colored pencil, fabric, and painted canvas on canvas, 96 × 84".

    Tschabalala Self, Racer, 2018, acrylic, watercolor, Flashe paint, crayon, colored pencil, fabric, and painted canvas on canvas, 96 × 84".

    “Tschabalala Self: Out of Body”

    ICA - Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston
    25 Harbor Shore Drive
    January 20–July 5, 2020

    Curated by Ellen Tani

    Born and raised in Harlem, Tschabalala Self grew up with maternal figures who sewed curtains, transformed old pants into skirts, and knit oversize blankets. Thus, textile rematerialization has become Self’s signature; her appliqué technique appears frequently among the eighteen works in this exhibition, her first in Boston and largest to date. In Sapphire, 2015, a canvas painted baby blue underpins a kaleidoscopic portrait assembled from fabric, oil, and pigment of a bodacious woman in profile. In Ol’Bay, 2019, fabric, hand-colored photocopies, and acrylic coalesce to construct a nude figure perusing bodega staples. Though her titles might seem to evoke flattened representations of black people, Self uses iterative pastiche to build “avatars” that she has described as “vehicles for self-realization and my escape.” Also on view will be Self’s newest works, in which she uses milk crates and fabric to sculpturally extend possibilities for black representation, subjectivity, and imagination.

  • Christine Sun Kim, One Week of Lullabies for Roux, 2018, seven-channel audio, headphones. Installation view, Catriona Jeffries, Vancouver, 2019. Photo: Rachel Topham Photography.

    Christine Sun Kim, One Week of Lullabies for Roux, 2018, seven-channel audio, headphones. Installation view, Catriona Jeffries, Vancouver, 2019. Photo: Rachel Topham Photography.

    “Christine Sun Kim: Off The Charts”

    MIT List Visual Arts Center
    20 Ames Street E15
    February 7–April 12, 2020

    Curated by Henriette Huldisch

    Shit Hearing People Say to Me, 2019, a drawing by Christine Sun Kim, displays a pie chart with one segment labeled “My neighbor’s dog is deaf. You two should meet!” In another, Why My Hearing Parents Sign, 2019, a segment reads, “To make sure I feel loved.” Inspired by W. E. B. Du Bois’s “data portraits”—the strikingly modern infographics he created in 1900 to communicate the effects of racism on contemporary African American life—Kim’s pie charts, eleven of which will be on view at MIT, diagram the “Deaf rage” brought about by her interactions with hearing people. A seven-channel sound piece devoted to her daughter, One Week of Lullabies for Roux, 2018, will also feature in the exhibition. Kim’s works depicting family life signal a new confessional development in her oeuvre, adding affective and biographical complexity to her ongoing experiments in linguistic notation.