SAN ANTONIO, TX.- Presa House
welcomes Dallas artist Ari Brielle and Brooklyn-based artist Rossana Romero. The exhibitions will remain on view by appointment through September 24, 2022.
Ari Brielle: 27
I don't know my body anymore. Although, in reality, through ongoing research and countless failed visits to the doctor, I know it better than I ever have, and yet it doesn't feel like mine. Its equilibrium is out of my reach. Basic pleasures, like eating and touch, are oftentimes painful. Many women (particularly Black women) are affected by endometriosis, including generations on my mom's side. In fact, Black women and femmes experience a myriad of reproductive issues at higher rates than non-Black people. And given that gynecology was created through the exploitation of non-consenting enslaved African women, seeking care as a Black woman is inherently difficult.
27 is a site-specific installation that combines sound, painting, drawing, and photography. Self-portraiture, a critical cultural moment, and family archives are interwoven to contemplate the intersectionality between the body, mothering, and the lasting legacies of institutionalized oppression. This work embodies my process of understanding my experience in the context and intersection of science, Black people, and exploitation. It is an ode to the women who raised me. It is grace.
Ari Brielle (b. 1993) is a visual artist born and based in Dallas, Texas. Her work explores the politicization and vastness of the Black American femme identity and experience. Painting from photographs of women and femmes in her life, Brielle creates her visual vocabulary that chronicles contemporary Black experiences.
Brielle completed her BA at the University of North Texas in 2016, where she cultivated her studio practice and studied Interdisciplinary Art and Design. She is currently pursuing an MFA in Intermedia at the University of Texas at Arlington. In 2017 Ari Brielle was named one of Dallas' Rising Stars, and her work has been included in group exhibitions across DFW. In 2019 the artist held her second solo exhibition, Safe Place, at the Oak Cliff Cultural Center in Dallas, TX. Two pieces from that body of work were featured in print publications--one in Bitch Magazine and one on the cover of Sana Sana, a book of poetry by Ariana Brown. Brielle participated in the 2021 Texas Biennial, curated by Ryan N. Dennis and Evan Garza. From December 2021 through May 2024, the artist's site-specific installation Poisoned by Zip Code is on view at the Dallas Museum of Art. The multimedia installation is a part of the C3 exhibition Rooted and explores the effects of environmental racism in Dallas, TX, through the story of Marsha Jackson and Shingle Mountain.
Rossana Romero: Home is just an idea in my head
As a child, I arrived in the United States from Colombia at the height of the war. These circumstances forced others to make decisions about my life that left my memory unclear and unable to differentiate between imagination and reality. My latest series focuses less on cultural and political aspects and instead on where my mind travels to escape and construct the home I've always longed for through my paintings. The series takes you on a journey into my underworld that serves as a refuge and a form of therapy when reality is unmanageable and allows the viewer to join me among the calm waters and lush green mountain ranges.
Home is just an idea in my head is a continuation of work from my first solo exhibition, No Des Papaya, which debuted in 2020. The series experiments with brightly colored textures using oil paint and sticks and introduces new mediums like paper mâché. The artwork connects through recurring symbols, landscapes, and waterscapes. These symbols act as a throughline weaving between pieces, telling a story, intertwining memories that blur boundaries between my reality and fantasy.
Rossana Romero (b. 1995) is a Colombian visual artist based in Brooklyn. Using portraits and landscapes with oil paintings and sculptures, she explores and draws inspiration from stories and folk tales of South America and the United States, creating an experience of surrealism and memories while diving into personal narrative and identity. Her work reflects themes of family, cultural history, intimate details of her personal life and relationships, migration, and social and political issues.