Lamin Fofana “BLUES” Mishkin Gallery / New York

May 13, 2020

Baruch College’s Mishkin Gallery presents “BLUES”, an exhibition by Sierra Leone-born, Berlin-based musician and artist Lamin Fofana.

Lamin Fofana’s music is a conduit for engaging with an array of issues involving blackness, migration, displacement, and race through collective listening. Fofana creates spaces for contemporary black life in the West that are informed by his interest in history and the sonic and “allow for dreaming and imagining other ways of being” which foreground non-linear thinking and experience. The exhibition centers on a trilogy of sound works comprising the albums Black Metamorphosis, Darkwater, and Blues that engage with seminal texts by Sylvia Wynter, W. E. B. Du Bois, and Amiri Baraka to reflect on historical and epistemological trajectories of contemporary social and political thought through the lens of Black Studies. These works will be presented alongside videos and photographs by Fofana and his collaborators Jim C. Nedd and Nicolas Premier.

The Mishkin Gallery will be the main site of the exhibition, with additional elements such as posters and sounds spiraling outwards through the College campus and into the city. Aiming for both physical and emotional resonance, the works attempt to challenge authoritative forms of representation and communication while drawing upon the artists’ personal experiences of diaspora, the coming and going of communities. Throughout the exhibition, the Gallery will hold live music performances, talks, readings, and listening sessions to collectively think through what Christina Sharpe calls “wake work”, living with and attending to the paradoxical history of slavery.

A booklet with contributions by Alaina Claire Feldman, Lamin Fofana, Dino Dinçer Şirin, and excerpts of primary source texts will accompany the exhibition.

“BLUES” is curated by Alaina Claire Feldman. The exhibition was made possible by the Baruch College Fund and the George and Mildred Weissman School of Arts and Sciences. Additional support was provided by Hedwig Feit and the Schindler-Lizana Fund for Latin American Arts and Culture, and the Cultural Services of the French Embassy.

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