Lot 216 - Christina Quarles - Where I Can Lay My Head
Acrylic on paper
Signed on Verso
This auction is raising proceeds for War Child UK
Legibility teeters on the edge of lack and excess—when we lack information about a thing, it is vague. However, as information accumulates, the risk for contradiction increases and legibility tips into ambiguity. As a Queer, cis-woman, born to a black father and a white mother, I engage with the world from a position that is multiply situated. My project is informed by my daily experience with ambiguity and seeks to dismantle assumptions of our fixed subjectivity through images that challenge the viewer to contend with the disorganized body in a state of excess. In this work, contour lines, and the emphasis on both the surface and the edge of the frame are analogous to the edge of the body.
For example, in my installation “It’s Gunna Be All Right, Cause Baby There Ain’t Nuthin’ Left,” what appears to be pictures hanging on the wall are in fact two-dimensional, painted trompe l'oeil illusions. Just as the edge of the canvases in this installation are illusory, so too are the boundaries that demarcate the self. The contradiction of my Black ancestry coupled with my fair skin, results in my place always being my displace. Throughout my paintings, there are perspectival planes that both situate and fragment the bodies they bisect—location becomes dislocation. Fixed categories of identity can be used to marginalize but, paradoxically, can be used by the marginalized to gain visibility and political power. This paradox is the central focus of my practice.
Yale School of Art in 2016 (M.F.A.); Hampshire College (B.A.)
2019 Pérez Art Museum Miami Prize; 2017 Rema Hort Mann Foundation Emerging Artist Grant
Pilar Corrias, London; Hauser & Wirth
Statement about AOAP Submitted Artwork
Continuing Christina Quarles' practice of drawing and painting on paper, these two new works on postcards address the artist's fascination with scale. She describes her process of drawing as related to quick and immediate thinking, a scale that differs from painting on canvas, both in terms of time and physical reach that's required to produce a larger work. As in all of Quarles' art, here her figures negotiate the interior experience of living within the body, rather than the act of looking at one.
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