Consider a Disappearance
The University of Illinois Springfield Visual Arts Gallery
ACRE Projects and Blanc Gallery are excited to present Outmoded Shapes, a three-person exhibition of work by Ricki Dwyer, John Alleyne, and Zachary Nicol, curated by Rohan Ayinde, that examines the conditions and structures in which bodies are made while offering modes for rupturing and rethinking them.
Loosely woven out of a series of Zoom calls over the past 7 months, the exhibition is contextualized by 4 key texts. They are the anchors in the show’s dialogue, orienting and giving shape to the work without defining the way it should be engaged with. A passage about the feminine power of the erotic from Audre Lorde opens out onto Gordon Hall’s discussion on materializing bodies through ritual. bell hooks remind us that masculinity is learned and practiced just as Mlondolozi Zondi analyzes the aesthetics of Afro-pessimism in Black performance. This symphony of ideas sounds like the space between Zach, Ricki, and John. They have listened to one another and, in so doing, begun to make sense of the shapes they are each grappling with – gender, class, race, masculinity, performance, and identity. They make visible to one another the forms that they feel bound by and against which they are pushing.
The polyvalent readings of the body charge the exhibition with a fluidity that refuses any fixed understanding of what a body is. Instead, all three artists ask how bodies are made. They ask what constitutes the materiality of a body, and what role we play in bringing that materiality into existence. They ask how a body can refuse legibility and capture while being used as a medium for imagining space otherwise. They look at how we weave understandings of self out of images made by others and how they can be broken down to make new, loose, freer assemblages.
We invite you to join us for the opening reception on Saturday, June 3rd, from 5-9 pm, with a special performance by Zachary Nicol and Jasmine Lupe Mendoza on opening night at 7.30 pm.