The Hyde Park Art Center is thrilled to host Exhibiting and Jackman Goldwasser Resident Artist Folayemi (Fo) Wilson in dialogue with scholar Chelsea Frazier in honor of her solo exhibition in Gallery 1, Dark Matter: Celestial Objects as Messengers of Love in These Troubled Times. This large scale exhibition reconsiders the power of objects to create a dynamic atmosphere for community and individual reflection, meditation, and healing. Soundscapes and cosmic orbs, a shotgun house-like structure that appears to come from another realm, embody Wilson’s desire “…to infuse love and restore dignity to a culture that is troubled with unfortunate manifestations of fear, hate, greed, shame, and a disregard for others.” Chelsea Frazier is a current PhD candidate at Northwestern University in the Department of African American Studies where her research focuses on the intersection of Black feminist theory and environmental thought. Frazier’s probing of dominant theoretical and disciplinary frameworks to propose the Black feminist ecoethic, pairs with Wilson’s desire to combine elements of architecture and integrate visuals art, objects, sound, and video to manifest a new world, inherently more in tune with humanity. The dialogue will be followed by a short reception where sips and bites will be served.
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Fo Wilson (Folayemi) is an artist/designer, educator, independent curator and writer. Her studio practice crosses interdisciplinary boundaries between the visual art, sonic media, a regard for the handmade, a background in design and object making, and an Afrofuturist expression of blackness. Wilson earned a MFA from the Rhode Island School of Design and is an Associate Professor at Columbia College Chicago. She was honored as a 2015 3Arts awardee, and received a 2016 Graham Foundation grant. Wilson lectures about art, design and craft to international audiences, and her writing and reviews have appeared in NKA, Journal of Contemporary African Art, the International Review of African American Art (IRAAA), and Communication Arts. Wilson was the 2013-14 Inaugural Faculty Fellow at the Center for Black Music Research (CBMR) and has been awarded residencies or fellowships at ACRE, Anderson Ranch Arts Center, Djerassi residency program, Haystack Mountain Center for Craft, Kohler Arts/Industry program, Macdowell Colony, and Purchase College/SUNY Purchase New York. She has been a grant recipient of Creative Time, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the Propeller Fund, and her design work is included in the collection of The Cooper Hewitt National Museum of Design.
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CHELSEA MIKAEL FRAZIER is a writer, cultural studies scholar, and educator working at the intersection of Black feminist theory and environmental thought. She is a PhD candidate in the Department of African American Studies, a Northwestern University Presidential fellow, and a fellow in the Science in Human Culture Program at Northwestern. Chelsea is currently at work on her dissertation—an ecocritical study of contemporary Black women artists, writers, and activists. In her analyses, she probes the ways that dominant theoretical and disciplinary frameworks in environmental studies obscure the legibility of what she calls a Black feminist ecoethic as it manifests in Black women’s environmental writing, visual art, and activism across the African diaspora. Chelsea received her Bachelor of Arts from the Department of Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies at Barnard College, her Master of Arts from the American Studies program at Purdue University, as well as a Master of Arts from the Department of African American Studies at Northwestern University. Her scholarship, teaching, and public speaking span the fields of Black feminist literature and theory, visual culture, ecocriticism and environmentalism, political theory, science and technology studies, and Afrofuturism.