BLACK MATTER

BLACK MATTER

May 5 – June 25, 2022 | A.N. Bush Gallery
RECEPTION May 6, FROM 5:30 P.M. – 7:30 P.M.
Curatorial Statement

The traveling exhibition Black Matter showcases contemporary Oregon-based black artists in an effort to address an imbalance in representation. Their voices should be heard, not because they are black, because they are human beings with unique life experiences. It is essential to lift up the contributions of black artists above systematic oppression in life and in art. Black artists should be recognized as individuals, without the filter of what the Western art canon tells us black art is or should be. The goal of the exhibition is to broaden cultural awareness of and appreciation for art by black artists in Oregon. This exhibit offers black artists the opportunity to share artwork that expresses what’s in their hearts and minds without the requirement of a political agenda. Black artists are continuously expected to make art about race, racism, and social injustice. The artwork in this exhibition expresses more than their experience of living in a state and country rooted in systematic racism; their art speaks to the experience of being human.

Quote – “It’s almost as if, in order to be a successful black artist, they must perpetually create art that speaks on black culture and racism. It’s not important for an artist’s race to be apparent just by looking at their work but, knowing that there are an increasing number of black artists being featured in museums and galleries is important. True progress will be achieved when work by black artists are collected based on the same criteria as their mainstream white counterparts instead of being judged as having an inherent racial bias. It is up to modern day art collectors, curators, and art historians to change the perspective.” 

~Tania Inniss

Artwork Image by Stormie True

EXHIBITING ARTISTS

  • Zina Allen
  • Jamila Clarke
  • Jeremy Okai Davis
  • Sapata Fofana-Dura
  • Israel Hammond
  • Rinee Merritt
  • Keeva Moselle
  • Lorraine Richey
  • Daren Todd
  • Stormie True
  • MOsley WOtta
About the curator

Tammy Jo Wilson is a black artist, curator, and arts organizer residing just south of Portland, Oregon in historic Oregon City. She received her BFA from the Pacific Northwest College of Art and her MFA from San Jose State University. She co-curated the exhibit An Artistic Heritage in 2019, Art Makes History and You are Not a Robot in 2020. Wilson started curating the traveling exhibition Black Matter in 2020, featuring all Oregon-based black artists. Wilson is co-founder and President of the arts organization Art in Oregon. A statewide visual arts non-profit working to foster culturally rich regional communities through partnerships, advocacy, and investment in artists, businesses, educational spaces, and community spaces. Additionally, She has worked in the art department at Lewis & Clark College as the Visual Arts & Technology Program Manager for the past eleven years. In her own art practice, Wilson has exhibited her work nationally and was awarded the Leland Ironworks Golden Spot Artist Residency in 2017, performed in the SALT: Above a Whisper at Shaking the Tree Theater in 2018, and was featured in the two women exhibit Biological Dissonance at the Parrish Gallery in Newberg, Oregon in 2019. In 2022 she has solo exhibitions of her artwork in Salem at the Gretchen Schuette Gallery in January and Roger Hall Gallery at Willamette University from January-April. 

Additional Resources

Black Matter: https://artinoregon.org/black-matter/

tammyjowilson.com

Link to quote article: https://blavity.com/black-art-matters-why-our-creative-visual-contributions-should-be-valued-and-represented-more-widely?category1=community-submitted&subCat=community-submitted&category2=visual-arts)