Guilty By Association Will Present Its First ArtCities Program

The inaugural edition will highlight five BIPOC artists from Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

Art
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Guilty by Association (GBA) is a new digital platform that aims to empower underrepresented communities across the creative industry. Co-founded by Karen Wong, former director of the New Museum in Manhattan, along with Derek Wiggins, who has produced a number of collaborations for Nike, adidas, and Supreme, the two look to shift the paradigm within the art world by highlighting overlooked talent, redistributing wealth and transforming what is seen by many as an antiquated system.

On December 12, GBA will showcase a new program dubbed ArtCities, which will initiate by spotlighting five BIPOC creators who all hail from Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Made in conjunction with Wake the Arts at Wake Forest University, the initiative will present the work of Krystal Hart, Ashley Johnson, Lakea Shepard, Mariam Aziza Stephan and Antoine Williams.

The latter artist uses cultural identity as a jumping-off point to speak on themes related to fear, power and societal perceptions of being Black in America. His monochromatic figures, always presented in slightly oversized clothes, are personal mythologies Williams employs to speak on the psychological and emotional weight for the “bare minimum of being seen as fully human,” per the artist.

Shepard draws on traditional African techniques, such as weaving and beading, to create brooding masks that reflect on slavery and an acknowledgment of the lingering wounds suffered by her community.

“We are constantly looking for unique opportunities for our students to make connections beyond the campus,” said Jennifer Finkel, WFU’s Curator of Collections, in a statement. Reiterating GBA’s core principles, Wong added that “the artworld has long focused its energy on a couple of metropolises and as culture-at-large explores models for decentralization, GBA’s clarion is amplifying artistic talent hidden in plain sight.”

The inaugural ArtCities will commence on December 12. Please visit GBA for more information.

Elsewhere, Michael Reeder navigates life and death in Pushing up Daisies exhibition.

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