Join us for a discussion reception featuring artist, Sanford Biggers, Dr. Allison Janae Hamilton, and ektor garcia on their new exhibition: Tricknology. The artists will be in conversation with Lissa Ballinger, Art Curator, The Aspen Institute.
Sanford Biggers’ work is an interplay of narrative, perspective and history that speaks to current social, political and economic happenings while also examining the contexts that bore them. His diverse practice positions him as a collaborator with the past through explorations of often overlooked cultural and political narratives from American history. Working with antique quilts that echo rumors of their use as signposts on the Underground Railroad, he engages these legends and contributes to this narrative by drawing and painting directly onto them. In response to ongoing occurrences of police brutality against Black Americans, Biggers’ BAM series is composed of bronze sculptures recast from fragments of wooden African statues that have been anonymized through dipping in wax and then ballistically ‘resculpted’. Following a residency as a 2017 American Academy Fellow in Rome, the artist recently began working in marble. Drawing on and playing with the tradition of working in this medium, Biggers creates hybridized forms that transpose, combine and juxtapose classical and historical subjects to create alternative meanings and produce what he calls “future ethnographies”. As creative director and keyboardist, he fronts Moon Medicin, a multimedia concept band that straddles visual art and music with performances staged against a backdrop of curated sound effects and video. Moon Medicin performed at Open Spaces Kansas City in October 2018 and at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. in 2019.
Sanford Biggers (b. 1970) was raised in Los Angeles and currently lives and works in New York City. He was awarded the 2017 Rome Prize in Visual Arts. He has had solo exhibitions at the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis (2018), the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit (2016), the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (2012) and the Brooklyn Museum (2011), among others. His work has been shown in several institutional group exhibitions including at the Menil Collection (2008) and the Tate Modern (2007), and also recent exhibitions at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (2017) and the Barnes Foundation (2017). Biggers’ work is held in the permanent collections of the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago; the Walker Center, Minneapolis; the National Museum of African American History and Culture, Washington D.C.; the Dallas Museum of Art, Dallas; and the Legacy Museum, Montgomery, among others.
Allison Janae Hamilton (b. 1984) was born in Kentucky, raised in Florida, and her maternal family’s farm and homestead lies in the rural flatlands of western Tennessee. Hamilton’s relationship with these locations forms the cornerstone of her artwork. Hamilton has exhibited her work at the Museum of Modern Art, New York, NY; Storm King Art Center, New Winsor, NY; the Studio Museum in Harlem, MoMA PS1, Long Island City, NY; the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery, Washington, DC; the Jewish Museum, New York, NY; Fundación Botín, Santander, Spain; the Brighton Photo Biennial, Brighton, UK; and the Istanbul Design Biennial, Istanbul, Turkey. Solo exhibitions of her work include Pitch at the Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (MASS MoCA), North Adams, MA (2018); Passage at Atlanta Contemporary, Atlanta, GA (2018); and Wonder Room at Recess, New York, NY (2017). She is the recipient of the Creative Capital Award and the Rema Hort Mann Foundation Grant, as well as wide range of residencies. Hamilton’s work is in numerous private and public collections including the Studio Museum in Harlem and Arte Al Límite. Hamilton received her PhD in American Studies from New York University and her MFA in Visual Arts from Columbia University. She lives and works in New York, NY.
ektor garcia (b. 1985) was born in Red Bluff, California. He received his BFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2014, and his MFA from Columbia University, New York in 2016. garcia’s solo exhibitions include those at Cooper Cole, Toronto, Canada; Museum Folkwang, Essen, Germany; Art Basel, Basel, Switzerland; kurimanzutto, Mexico City, Mexico. Group exhibitions include those at LAXART, Los Angeles, CA; New Museum, Salon 94, and Sargent’s Daughters, New York, NY; Chicken Coop Contemporary, Portland, OR; Museo de Arte de Zapopan, Guadalajara, Mexico; ACCA, Melbourne, Australia. garcia lives and works between Mexico, New York, and wherever he loses himself.
Lissa Ballinger has worked in the art world for 20 years in both the for-profit and non-profit arenas. She has worked for museums, art galleries, with private collectors and art consultants. She obtained her Masters of Art Administration from Columbia University in 2002 and in 2014 she completed the coursework with the American Society of Appraisers through the University of Chicago. Ballinger started her Art Advisory business in 2010 and has worked with private clients, local galleries and she serves as the Curator of the Aspen Institute’s art collection and galleries.