Focusing on themes of migration, mobility, and socio-cultural displacement, these two solo exhibitions with Donna Huanca and Ezra Wube demonstrate each artist’s relationship to historical and embodied memory through an ongoing engagement with the figure. Both artists repurpose the methods and logic of painting, as well as the associative capacities of color to unpack senses of longing; experiences of spatio-temporal disjunction; and the mapping of cultural norms onto the body. Huanca and Wube collectively apply this engagement through animation, photography, video, sculpture, and performance.
POLY STYRENE’S BRACES
Curated by Anne Barlow
Curated by Kristen Chappa
Organized by: Art in General, New York in collaboration with kim? Contemporary Art Centre
Donna Huanca is a Bolivian-American artist whose sculptures and installations are activated by live female performers that improvise and interact with the abstract assemblages. Huanca employs contentious signifiers of female power, such as cosmetics and textiles, to confront women’s constrained struggles to express sexuality, confidence, and power in a social realm. Previous exhibitions include Water Scars at Chez Valentin, Paris, France (2015); Muscle Memory, Peres Projects, Berlin, Germany (2015); Sade Room (famously reclusive), MoMA PS1, New York, NY (2014); Seeing Auras at ltd, Los Angeles, CA (2014); and Raw Material at Malmö Konsthalle, Malmö, Sweden (2013). Awards and residencies include Smack Mellon, Brooklyn, NY (2015); Access Gallery, Vancouver, Canada (2013); Fulbright Scholarship (2012); Art Matters Grant (2010); and Swing Space, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, New York, NY (2009). Huanca received a BFA in Painting from the University of Houston, Texas, USA, and studied at the Städelschule, Staatliche Hochschule für Bildende Künste, Frankfurt, Germany.
Ezra Wube is a Brooklyn-based mixed media artist born in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Through autobiography, his work references notions of past and present and the dialogical tension between “here” and “there”. Wube’s photography and stop-motion animations present time and place as layered, collaged, and perpetually shifting elements. Previous exhibitions include the Dak’Art 2014 Biennale, Dakar, Senegal (2014); the 5th Marrakech Biennale, Marrakech, Morocco (2014); The 18th International Festival of Contemporary Art SESC Videobrasil, São Paulo, Brazil (2014); and At the same moment, Times Square Midnight Moment program, New York, NY (2013). Awards and residencies include the Rema Hort Mann Foundation Emerging Artist Grant (2015); Triangle Arts Association, Brooklyn, NY (2015); Swing Space, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, New York, NY (2013); The Substation, Johannesburg, South Africa (2011); Contemporary Artists Center at Woodside, Troy, NY (2011); and Château de la Napoule, France (2011). Wube holds a BFA from the Massachusetts College of Art, Boston, MA, and received his MFA from Hunter College, New York, NY.