RESIST is an exhibition of responses to the political climate of the United States. Let’s not say the “current” political climate or the “post-election” climate because what is happening now is merely a continuation of what has come before it. Americans (especially those with comfortable lives) tend to suffer from nasty cases of historical amnesia. Is the rise of Donald Trump frightening because it’s truly unexpected, or because we couldn’t see through the glossy surfaces of our socioeconomic bubbles?
We invited artists to show work that deals with the viscerality of politics. Work that eschews pithy or sophomoric commentary for subtlety and depth. Work that acknowledges history and its inextricable relation to the present. Work that recognizes emotion as a valid genesis for politics.
We wanted work that seeks and advocates for political solutions heartier and more potent than the ever-nebulous entity of “love.” Work with bark and bite. Work that celebrates bodies on the periphery, bodies in danger, bodies that might be deemed insufficiently human in a culture saturated with rightism.
We wanted work that questions art as a politically useful mode of production. Work that encourages the viewer to go beyond aesthetics and toward activism. Work that questions itself, work that implicates the viewer, work that unsettles the pristine space of art and brings us into the violence and fear of material reality.
The following artists responded to our request, and have committed their work to this exhibit:
Lasse Antonsen • David Barnes • Deborah Baronas • Linda Brown • John Buron • Beth Claverie • Diana Cole • Tom Culora • Lynne de Beer • Tom Deininger • Elizabeth Duffy • David Formanek • Tayo Heuser • Marc Kehoe • Nermin Kura • Saberah Malik • Annu Palakunnathu Matthew • Sally Mendzela • Jessica Nissen • Elin Noble • Marcus Reichert • Bob Rizzo • Brooke Roberts • Duke Robillard • Carol Scavotto • Nancy Shand • Anna Shapiro • Mark Shehan • Rebecca Siemering • Susan Strauss • Kristin Street • Susannah Strong • Mark Wholey • Coral Woodbury • Kelly Zelen
In conjunction with the gallery opening, there will be an opportunity for people to mingle, listen to poetry, music, meditate etc. This event will happen in the Sandywoods Center for the Arts, next door to the gallery.
Confirmed performers | Len Cabral, Christopher Johnson, Jon Campbell, Quahog Quire
and more to come
DONATIONS | If the punditry’s utter failure to predict or understand the mainstream acceptance of Trump is any indication, talk is exceedingly cheap. In the interest of putting our money where our mouth is, so to speak, we asked that all participating artists donate a portion of any work sold to the ACLU, Planned Parenthood, or any other organization of their choice. The gallery will also donate half of their profits to the ACLU.
I’m in a new book with many fellow Rhode Island writers and artists. Put together by my friend Xander Marro and part of the Demons book series. Available at dmnspress.com/
“Freedom’s just another word for legs with a mind of their own. Fantastic book for travel and plotting escape plans! Sometimes you just have to go, and/or sometimes you look around and realize that you’ve been left behind.
As part three of a book series that presents thematic collections of writing & pictures by visual artists/musicians/performers/people who have some affiliation with a broad and vaguely defined “world of art”, DMNS presents: Leaving. Perfect bound. 184 pages, RISO printed silkscreened cover on flocked paper. Contributors = a stacked deck of mostly Rhode Islanders past/present/future: Paul McCarthy, Sam Lopes, Rick Benjamin, Kevin Hooyman, Jacob Khepler, Ron Rege Jr Jr, Maren Jensen, Jo Dery, Jieun Reiner, Jim Drain, Cybele Collins, Anabel Vázquez, Jed Hancock & Rebecca Noon, Erik Ruin, Rebecca Siemering, S. Hollis Mickey, JR Uretsky, Dailen Williams , Robert Arellano, Jim Frain, Mark Baumer, and Alan Powell.”@ Xander Marro
Here is the original poem about a conversation with my 4-year-old last year:
You see…you see….
Watching TV, with the little person
She turns to me and says, “How do people die?”
Well, I say, people get old you see…and sometimes sick.
“Oh,”she says,”When you get old, will you die?”
I say, when I get old, not wanting to think about it.
Trying not to let me eyes get misty.
She says, “I’ll miss you,” staring at the screen.
The next day
tucked in as tight as a baby
she says, “Mama, you are going to die someday,
but me and Dada ARE NOT.”
Her eyes set on me.
Hard. Daring me to say the contrary.
Well, you see….
Then, “How did Grandpa die? Was he old or did he leave the store?”
Well….that’s a good question….
I do my best to explain the Big C.
Wake up call.
“Mama. I told my teachers at school you are going to die someday.”
You did? I say, half awake.
Peep, peep, peep outside.
“Uh huh. But I told them I will miss you.”
Kiss on the cheek.
“Mama. I want to sleep on your belly.”
She puts her head on my heart.
Her body wrapped around my middle.
My breech baby.
It all comes around again.
Rebecca Siemering 2015