AOT PROJECT will present OUR ELEMENTS a collaborative consideration of locally generated feminist art created over the past two years by Brooklyn-based artists DJ TIKKA MASALA, MERYL FEIGENBERG, and M, Opening Saturday, October 21st, 2017.
Since 2015, I have been hosting art exhibitions in my home with its gallery setting aesthetics. A home is where most art is meant to be experienced and the ease in which community is constructed in this setting is a beautiful marriage of expression. The salon will serve as a site-specific location, a platform for feminist art and social action.
In this exhibition, the artists begin with a set of questions: What is home? Who belongs here? How is the space created? How do we take care of ourselves and each other at home? How does the idea of home fall apart and become reconstructed through community practice? What is the role of individual and collective ritual in the process of evolving the purpose of a home? How do we observe our own lives and the lives of others in the context of home?
Our Elements is a collaborative consideration by three individuals whose work interacts with the political, social, and cultural conditions of gender, sexuality, economics, and politics and exploring ideas of bodies, time, emotional labor, place, and the interplay between identity and medium. This project aims to think about what it means to be an individual, in a collective, and find a safe-space to process the political trauma that is wreaking havoc on intersectional bodies. This means women, queers, immigrants, people of color, folks with different ability statuses, among other factors under current political, economic, and cultural conditions. Each of these three artists employs different tools including sculpture, spatial intervention, illustration, video, audio, text, performance and social-media to explore such ideas and how it relates to them.
We, the artists, experience the project as a re-interpretation of home, to create a sense of purposeful community engagement. We seek to embrace the space. We question our ideas of home and the systems in which we live. We desire to deconstruct these ideas in order to reconstruct anew with each other, together.
Douglas Turner + Our Elements: [DJ TIKKA MASALA|MERYL FEIGENBERG|M]
Artists Statements and Bios
DJ Tikka Masala
Using original music a compositions, and written descriptions about the patrons and context of the last lesbian bar in Manhattan, Henrietta Hudson, DJ Tikka Masala seeks to capture the energy of a resilient space for and by queer women. The writings happen from the DJ booth in the course of a regular night at the bar, and are the accumulation of two years of observing and recording the night’s interpretations, narratives, and rituals. The musical compositions have been generated in collaboration with LAVA Brooklyn, a feminist acrobatic geology inspired dance company. Additionally, this DJ cooks and will be providing a sense of home by cooking before and during the show. As an immigrant, queer, feminist, person of color, Tikka has been watching the ebb and flow of New York City nightlife the past 12 years from the booth, and seeks to convey the urgency of preservation of queer space and narrative, through personal reflection and community sharing, especially in the past two years of political change.
Description withholds judgment and presumption
giving over attention to subtlety and nuance.
False neutralities are often taken for granted
but begin to fade when questioned.
With duration, everything reveals in the nothingness.
What was once hidden can now be seen.
Through photography, installation, and performative gestures, I seeks to question the now and the what is in order to imagine a then and there of a yet to come. Practicing durational looking and withholding assumptions and presumptions, I strive to raise questions about systemic power structures, particularly in regards to race and gender.
Born in The Bronx, now in Brooklyn, Meryl Feigenberg holds an MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, a Professional Certificate in General Studies from the International Center of Photography, an MAT in Art Education from School of Visual Arts, and a BA from Hampshire College.
In addition to her art making practice, Meryl teaches art, photography, and video to students ranging in age from Pre-Kindergarten through adulthood. Meryl has taught in New York City public schools, the International Center of Photography and ICP at The POINT, The Heschel School, The City College of New York, and the Educational Video Center. In addition Meryl works as a freelance videographer and editor with artists and educators.
M is navigating their new identity as an artist through awkward exploration of what it means to call a place “home”. From Ibarra, Ecuador, M grew up undocumented in New York and has spent a lot of time thinking about how the only place they can call home is within themselves. Art has allowed M to feel comfortable with thoughts about being undocumented, queerness, depression, trauma, feelings, and bodies and how they all inform their artistic practice.
M has been working as a graphic designer since 2013. They currently live in Brooklyn and spend a lot of time with their dog, Duncan.