30 September 2009

visit to Gugulective

when my partner, e Frances White, and i visited South Africa in April, we had not yet met Liesl Theron and Pamella Dlungwana, but had been introduced to them via email by our friends Zanele Muholi and Gabi Ngcobo.  one Saturday, Liesl and Pam took us to visit Gugulective, a fantastic artists' collective in Gugulethu township.  we were hosted by Unathi Sigenu, shown here with a mural painted by him and and another member of the collective, Dathini Mzayiya.

Gulgulective creates exhibits, installations, performances, video screenings, community discussions in the midst of a community far from the art galleries of Cape Town. Gugulective, based at the KwaMlamli shebeen, is a gathering place where everyone gathers to learn from one another.

learn more at gugulective.net


an engrossing new project is to make portraits of cultural workers, people from various walks of life who are committed to progressive social change--they may be helping create community gardens, organizing demonstrations, leading groups, or practicing the arts for the social good.  i'm rediscovering photos i shot many years ago of folks who have done this important work, and now, am meeting, interviewing, and photographing contemporary workers.  current work on the portraits project began when i received the Arts International Residency Grant from the Augusta Savage Gallery in Amherst, MA, making it possible for me to visit Cape Town, South Africa in April 2009.

Grace Paley, 1985

photographic narratives, the beginning, 1980

my first large-scale work measured 7' x 9' and was a tribute to the writer James Baldwin.  i live in new york city, so space constraints mean i can only do larger works by commission.

pictured is the installation of a quilt for James Baldwin at the Franklin University Gallery in 1980.

03 March 2009

expert witnesses

Combines images of students, Denver 1969, Chicano Youth Conference, and a man mixing concrete in Costa Rica 2004.archival photos, thread, beads, nails 32"w x 25"h 2008