reviews

  • Danielle Dean, True Red Ruin (Elmina Castle), 2017, HD video, color, sound, 9 minutes 39 seconds.

    Danielle Dean

    Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (MOCAD)

    Danielle Dean’s solo show “True Red Ruin” consists of a two-channel video set above a display of multicolored cardboard cutouts, surrounded by drawings and sculptures used in their making. Simultaneously visceral and abstract, the installation explores black identity in relation to capitalism and colonialism through an uncanny superimposition of the histories of these two systems upon the present day.

    Dean’s subject is Elmina Castle, the Portuguese trading post erected in 1482 in West Africa, which later became an infamous node in the Atlantic slave trade. The castle was also the first prefabricated

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