Warith Taha, MFA 2020

February 26-29, 2020

Opening Reception: February 28th, 6-8pm

“Chair with Black Legs Sitting on a Black and White Floor Sitting on Chairs” 2018 Acrylic and Graphite on Canvas 72”x68”

“Held Together Quietly with Hugs” 2019 Enamel on Canvas with Found Photos 72”x60”

Artist Statement

1. Last Thanksgiving my uncle Roy asked me to explain to him the difference between Rachel Dolezal and Caitlyn Jenner. I was without words but I wanted to tell him that the body is simultaneously a site of choice and no choice. I wanted to tell him that the ‘self’ is a constructed thing. That at times my hands feel like my own and other times I look at them and wonder whose they are.

2.  My phone’s photo album is filled with pictures I have taken of alleys. I am drawn to them as liminal zones. Inhabiting the space between “here” and “there,” they exist but for the grace of their adjacencies. 

3. The alley way photo as an abstract selfie.

4. What exist in the space that exists between figuration and abstraction?

5. If Blackness is a liminal space and queerness is liminal space then Black queerness is a liminal space between two distinct liminal spaces.  

6. The body as a space with borders. Intimacy as a kind of border crossing. The mouth, the vagina, the anus as portals. The first person I ever had sex with was named Marquis. He had a gap in his teeth like a window.

7. Bony lines spaced out like teeth and connected at joints. The grid is itself a body, with beginnings and ends, surface and interior, fluctuations and flaws. 

8.     Words like:

Bollywood, from Bombay and Hollywood
anklet, from ankle and bracelet
Spanglish, Spanish and English
jeggings, from jeans and legging.

Offer us a way of thinking about how meaning is generated in-between two distinct points.