Bode presents Human Tapestry, a group exhibition of Kareem-Anthony Ferreira, Jerrell Gibbs, Riley Holloway, Collins Obijiaku, Patrick Quarm, and Raelis Vasquez, capturing the complexity of humanity and personality, as well as questioning subjective perception through wide-ranging portrayals and social sketches of everyday Black life.
As true manifestation of figurative art, the show investigates the cultural heritage of Black communities across the globes, uncovering the complexities of human nature and exploring the wide palette of human emotions. The artists catch their characters – friends, family, or strangers, – in moments of peace, rest, joy, sadness, pain, self-reflection, and solitude, which makes them both authentic and truthful. All the protagonists are depicted with a tenderness and intimacy, allowing the viewers to enter their inner world, meet their inner character. Inspired by the traditions of Realism, Surrealism, Expressionism and Op Art, the works present an incredible mixture of various forms and vibrant colors, rich in drama, culture and history. Moreover, through their oeuvre, the artists address the problem of subjective perception and challenge stereotypes and misconceptions around Blackness.
While Riley Holloway blurs boundaries between softness and masculinity, creating the image of a strong powerful woman, visually emphasizing it with a muscular athletic body constitution, Jerrell Gibbs combats the misrepresentation and stereotypes that often are associated with the black male figure, depicting them with contrasting symbolism and gives the viewer the opportunity to engage with intimacy and vulnerability. Kareem-Anthony Ferreira’s social imaginaries, taken from the Caribbean surroundings and placed in the non-indigenous context, are meant to be easily identifiable, cliché, and at times, sarcastic. With his expressionist portraits of Black men and women, gazing directly and boldly at the viewer, Collins Obijiaku creates intimate records of his home and surrounding community, aiming to memorialize their emotions and inner states. Patrick Quarm analyzes the life of the contemporary African, including the continuous evolution of ones personality, being exposed or immersed in a new social environment, by incorporating intriguing and bold colors and patterns into his work, which are deeply rooted in his culture. Raelis Vasquez turns his memories and emotions in tender and sincere paintings of Afro Dominican life. His compelling works executed in warm and welcoming colors depict everyday scenes from his homeland, whether it’s lively gatherings on the market or an intimate moment of immersion in a book, simultaneously presenting the artist’s intellectual and emotional investigation of his own identity as an immigrant.
All together it’s a bright colorful Human Tapestry, exploring the many faces and facades of our multifaceted community. Thousands of tapestry threads, interwoven with each, stand for thousands of personal stories of our surroundings and ourselves. Undoubtedly individual, they are still intertwined and interconnected, resulting in a diverse collection of unique, yet truly complimentary artworks.