Edny Jean Joseph. The Spectacle, 2020. Courtesy of the artist and Andrew Quarrie & Void Projects
Edny Jean Joseph. The Spectacle, 2020. Courtesy of the artist and Andrew Quarrie & Void Projects

Oolite Arts Announces Summer Exhibition: “Where there is power”

Exhibition provides glimpse at the many ways artists question, expose and confront power

July 13, 2021 (MIAMI)  As we continue navigating this disorienting phase in national history, we find new opportunities to take risks. And as always, art is there to tell the story. This summer starting July 21, Oolite Arts presents Where there is power, an exhibition about the many ways that artists access, spy upon, expose, memorialize, and occasionally trouble the machinations of power.

Jose Alvarez (D.O.P.A.) The Visitor, 2007. Courtesy of the artist and GAVLAK Gallery
Jose Alvarez (D.O.P.A.) The Visitor, 2007. Courtesy of the artist and GAVLAK Gallery

Where there is power is co-organized by Amanda Bradley, programs manager at Oolite Arts, and Réne Morales, chief curator at Pérez Art Museum Miami. “When I was first invited to do the show last summer, the world really felt like it was on fire,” said Réne Morales. “Between the pandemic, the movement for Black lives, ongoing trauma from the last administration and election, and crises at the border, the societal powers that structure and regulate our lives were clearly becoming unstable. So, we wanted to put together a show that would respond to the political instability and volatility of the times.”   

Antonia Wright and Ruben Millares Where there is power there is resistance, 2021. Courtesy of the artists and Spinello Projects
Antonia Wright and Ruben Millares Where there is power there is resistance, 2021. Courtesy of the artists and Spinello Projects

The exhibition’s title refers to a famous quote by the philosopher Michel Foucault: “Where there is power, there is resistance.”  The Miami-based artists featured in the exhibition include José ÁlvarezAsif FarooqEdny Jean JosephFrancisco MasóYucef MerhiReginald O’NealRodolfo PerazaChire RegansTony Vázquez-FigueroaJudi WertheinAgustina WoodgateAntonia Wright and Ruben Millares. Their works touch on several urgent themes including racial conflict, law enforcement, mass incarceration, cults of personality, mass protests, immigration, the exploitation of natural resources, and digital surveillance.

“Inclusive of both deeply personal and political intersections with power, the exhibition creates an entry point into understanding some of the larger systems that govern our daily lives,” said Bradley.

Reginald O’Neal. My Father, 2018. Courtesy of the artist
Reginald O’Neal. My Father, 2018. Courtesy of the artist

Highlights include a work by Yucef Merhi who intercepted the emails of Hugo Chávez from 1998-2004 and creates wallpaper installations out of them. The late Asif Farooq recreated the Soviet-era MiG-21 jet fighter, down to the smallest detail, in true scale – wholly out of paper. Farooq’s work was the seed that germinated this show and is a reflection on the military industrial complex, the legacies of the cold war, and the fetishization of the military and death. Antonia Wright and Ruben Millares’ piece reimagines the barricade, a symbol of power and control. Agustina Woodgate encases a month’s supply of emergency water in an impenetrable acrylic box referencing corporate attempts to monetize water particularly in Latin America and Africa. Chire Regans, who creates memorial portraits of victims of gun violence, presents a new, site-specific work that includes portraits of her own children.

Yucef Merhi No Fly Security, 2018-19. Courtesy of The CIFO Collection
Yucef Merhi No Fly Security, 2018-19. Courtesy of The CIFO Collection

Morales adds, “It is an important moment to take stock of and think about how power impacts our lives. These artists remind us of the inherent value of shedding light into dark places.”

To view the exhibition, Where there is power, the public can visit the gallery between the hours of noon and 5 p.m., July 21 – Sept. 19, 2021. Oolite Arts invites the public to an opening reception from 7 – 9 p.m. on Wednesday, July 21. Click HERE to RSVP. The gallery space is located at 924 Lincoln Road. For updates, visit oolitearts.org.

CALENDAR NOTICE

Where there is power 

924 Lincoln Road , Miami Beach, Florida

Free to the public; July 21 – Sept. 19, noon to 5 p.m.

About Oolite Arts

Oolite Arts helps Miami-based artists advance their careers and inspires the cultural community to engage with their work. Established in 1984, Oolite Arts is both a community and a resource, providing visual artists with the studio space, exhibition opportunities and financial support they need to experiment, grow and enrich the city. Through its educational programming, Oolite Arts helps Miamians learn about contemporary art and develop their own artistic skills. For more information, visit oolitearts.org. Follow @oolitearts on social media.

About the Curators

René Morales is Chief Curator at Pérez Art Museum Miami, where he has organized more than 50 exhibitions. Recent projects include Polyphonic: Celebrating PAMM’s Fund for Black Art (2020), Meleko Mokgose: Your Trip to Africa (2020), Christo and Jeanne-Claude: Surrounded Islands, 1980–83 (2018), Dara Friedman: Perfect Stranger (2017), Sarah Oppenheimer: S-281913 (2016), Susan Hiller: Lost and Found (2016), Marjetica Potrc: The School of the Forest (2015), Nicolas Lobo: The Leisure Pit (2015), Global Positioning Systems: Selections from the PAMM Collection (2014–15), Amelia Peláez: The Craft of Modernity, and Monika Sosnowska: Market (2013–14). Morales spearheaded the acquisition of nearly 400 works from the Sackner Archive of Concrete and Visual Poetry for PAMM’s collection. He is a recipient of the 2019 Center for Curatorial Leadership Fellowship and is on the board of the City of Miami Art in Public Places program. Prior to joining PAMM, Morales worked at the Museum of Art, Rhode Island School of Design, in Providence. Morales studied at Swarthmore College and Brown University.

Amanda Bradley is a Belizean American artist and arts administrator based in Miami, Florida. She received a BFA in Photography from New World School of the Arts. Currently, she is the Programs Manager at Oolite Arts, where she oversees The Ellies, Miami’s Visual Art Awards as well as Oolite’s Exhibitions Program. Her work explores place and landscape as a means to connect and understand identity, belonging, histories, and relationships. Her work has been exhibited in The land remembers the flood at FAR Contemporary Gallery; Work from Home at The Bass Museum of Art; Further than Memory, Intimate Distances at Artmedia Gallery; Notices in a Mutable Terrain at Fundacion Pablo Atchugarry; It will never become quite familiar to you at Oolite Arts, RCS: 76-100 at Swampspace Gallery; The Passing of Time at the Alfred DuPont Building; american fine arts, an allegory for americas at Art Movement LA, California and Current Projects in Little Haiti, Florida; and In This Moment at PH21 Gallery in Budapest, Hungary; amongst others.

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The Miami-based artists featured in the exhibition include José ÁlvarezAsif FarooqEdny Jean JosephFrancisco MasóYucef MerhiReginald O’NealRodolfo PerazaChire RegansTony Vázquez-FigueroaJudi WertheinAgustina WoodgateAntonia Wright and Ruben Millares.
Rodolfo Peraza. Jailhead.com, 2009-2021. Courtesy of the artist
Rodolfo Peraza. Jailhead.com, 2009-2021. Courtesy of the artist
Agustina Woodgate Emergency Exchange, 2019. Courtesy of the artist and Spinello Projects
Agustina Woodgate Emergency Exchange, 2019. Courtesy of the artist and Spinello Projects
Yucef Merhi Maximum Security, 1998-2004. Courtesy of the artist and The Bonnier Gallery
Yucef Merhi Maximum Security, 1998-2004. Courtesy of the artist and The Bonnier Gallery
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