The First Art Newspaper on the Net   Established in 1996 United States Tuesday, April 25, 2017


Exhibition of works by Radcliffe Bailey opens at Samsøñ
Fourth Ward, 2013. Wooden door with gold leaf, nail, bottle caps, 2 iron pins, wooden base, 89 x 33 x 10 inches (226 x 83.8 x 25.4 cm) door 79 x 28 x 6 inches (200.6 x 71.1 x 15.2 cm).
BOSTON, MASS.- Radcliffe Bailey's work collectively builds an alternate history of transatlantic slave narratives, accounts and histories of culture, science, and art making; histories that ask the perennial ‘what if’ questions that haunt human history. How we process stolen legacies, devalued humans, unrecognized aesthetic practices and balance their retelling through the lens of modernism and post modernist angst will keep all, us (and them) busy for years to come. No matter the weight of the subject, Bailey finds a way to bring the wonder of freedom to the table. His aesthetic drapetomania pushing our eyes forward, past nostalgia into two and three-dimensional stagings that interrogate the past and present all at once. West African ritual mark making, Dadaist and Surrealist technique, the ghosts of Negritude and Harlem Renaissance aspirations, Expressionist abstractions coupled with cosmic and free jazz influences, folk and funk art, revising stories, retention and contemporary innovations all maneuvered into place; a well staged ensemble propelling conversations around the valuation and re-evaluation of African minds, bodies, and myths.

Radcliffe Bailey's luminous series Notes from Tervuren is a fine example of his unconventional historical narration. Paint applied like sacrificial fluids amid an orchestra of collaged floating signs and sacred symbols wrapped around collaged totems layered and lacquered on aged and weathered sheet music. In his book, Bluetopia: Visions of the Future and Revisions of the Past in the, works of Sun Ra, Duke Ellington and Anthony Braxton, Graham Lock describes music as a complementary form of history and a gateway to other realities. This idea argues music, as a creative vehicle, helped Africans in the Diaspora envision a promised land of the future and recall the memory of a promised land lost in past. The figures in the Tervuren series move, animated by centuries of waiting. KiKongo Nkisi language and culture co-mingles with representations of Mende womanhood in the watery dream world of Olokun spirituality. These artifacts provide a dream of agency and autonomy, visualized as aquatic movements spanning the expansive journey, that Middle Passage, from Mythic Africa to present Diaspora through art world stylisms. Ancestral objects surrounded by chaotic rainbows echo the twilight colors of coming night and dawning day, spirits of memory evoking griots dancing mambos, ghost singers and tale tellers.

Art is one of the ways we humans keep our history, our community, our faith, our prophetic and speculative hopes alive. Art keeps the voice of our love and hate. It speaks to the blues of our glass hearts breaking. It speaks to the piecing of our Osiris selves back together. It is how we give voice to our gods and have them sign their names. It is the hoodoo child coming of age in all of us, fighting to keep a consumed, magical world populated by living myth and ever present wonder. It simultaneously keeps and transforms the narrative of history. Radcliffe Bailey’s art is an heir to a Pan African, Pan Aesthetic patchwork high culture that has consistently carried the weight of art's communal purpose. Let us all celebrate this griot's song. ---- Kevin Sipp, March 2016.

Radcliffe Bailey was born in Bridgeton, New Jersey in 1968, and grew up in Atlanta, Georgia, where he currently lives and works. Bailey received a B.F.A. in 1991 from The Atlanta College of Art. His past exhibitions include, Memory as Medicine, High Museum of Art, Atlanta (2011), which traveled to the Davis Museum and Cultural Center, Wellesley College (Wellesley, MA), and the McNay Art Museum (San Antonio, TX). New/Now: Radcliffe Bailey, New Britain Museum of American Art, New Britain, CT (2004), Neo-HooDoo, curated by Franklin Sirmans and organized by The Menil Collection (Houston, TX) at the Miami Art Museum, (Miami, FL 2009), and traveled to MoMA P.S.1, (NY, NY, 2009). Bailey’s work is in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art (NY. NY), the Smithsonian Museum of American Art (Washington, D.C.), the Corcoran Gallery of Art (Washington, D.C.), the Museum of Fine Arts (Houston, TX), the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art (Kansas City, MO) and the High Museum of Art (Atlanta, GA), among others.






Today's News

April 1, 2016

Iraqi-British architect Zaha Hadid, famed for futuristic curves, dies aged 65 in Miami

More analysis needed on King Tut 'hidden chamber': Egypt minister Khaled al-Anani

The Oppenheimer Blue: The largest Fancy Vivid Blue diamond offered at auction

Son begins quest to bury Islamic State-slain Khaled al-Assaad known as 'father of Palmyra'

Hungarian Nobel Literature Prize winner Imre Kertesz dies in Budapest after a long illness

Daily: Exhibition of works by Annette Messager opens at Marian Goodman Gallery in New York

Apple chooses de Young Museum app to premiere on Apple Watch

Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco acquire masterpiece by American sculptor Hiram Powers

Steidl and UCLA College present "Robert Frank: Books and Films 1947-2016" at Bergamot Station

Freeman's appoints new SVP & Division Head of American & European Furniture & Decorative Arts

Pace/MacGill Gallery opens exhibition of works by British artist Richard Learoyd

Career spanning exhibition of work by Michele Oka Doner opens at Perez Art Museum Miami

Exhibition of new work by Barbara Takenaga opens at DC Moore Gallery in New York

French and international art dealers exhibit at PAD Paris

Russian artist Pavlensky declared 'sane' after spy agency protest

Britain's remaining milkmen keeping tradition afloat

Costume, performance, persona, and pose are explored in exhibition at sepiaEYE gallery

Getty awards $8.45 million in exhibition grants for Pacific Standard Time: LA/LA initiative

Exhibition of works by Sam Lewitt opens at Kunsthalle Basel

Solo exhibition of new works by British-born artist Tatyana Murray on view at Gallery nine 5

New film installation by Stan Douglas on view at David Zwirner

Exhibition of works by Radcliffe Bailey opens at Samsøñ

Raven Row presents the work of Channa Horwitz

National Portrait Gallery acquires new sculpture of Baroness Joan Bakewell

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4.- British treasure found in piano

5.- Celebrated Polish sculptor and fiber artist Magdalena Abakanowicz dies at 86

6.- The Met reunites Caravaggio's last two paintings in exhibition

7.- Intuit celebrates Henry Darger's 125th birthday with new exhibition

8.- Exhibition delves into the manner that melancholy is represented in Mexican art

9.- Exhibition of early photographs of Bob Dylan opens at Steven Kasher Gallery

10.- The 21st Biennale of Sydney (2018) announces first 21 artists for its 45th anniversary exhibition



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