Note: this is the second installment in an ongoing series. See the introductory installment, in which artists Israel McCloud and Mich S describe their projects, here.
Art League Houston (ALH), in partnership with the City of Houston Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs, is pleased to announce Insta11ations, 11 distinct art experiences created in each of Houston’s 11 city council districts. Insta11ations is made up of artists who are experimenting with the ways people interact with public art, who reimagine public spaces, and who express stories of social justice and equity in their work. Artists were asked to respond to the specific needs and identities of communities that neighbor the proposed sites, and to create experiences that could engage and empower community members, and unearth, reinterpret and/or platform local histories.
Each artist will be provided with the technical support and education necessary to execute their site-specific experience from concept through fabrication and installation. Insta11ations is a project of the City of Houston Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs and Art League Houston, with funding made available through Houston Arts Alliance. Experiences will open Spring 2020 and be on view through Fall 2021.
Houston artists Antonius-Tín Bui and Marsha Dorsey-Outlaw describe their projects. Text below via ALH.
Antonius-Tín Bui, District F, Alief Art House
Alief Art House, featuring exhibitions curated by artist Antonius-Tín Bui, is a transformed shipping container that highlights the cultural richness of Alief communities through curated exhibitions, murals, and happenings. Located on the grounds of the Alief Community Garden at the Alief SPARK Park and Nature Center (Houston), Alief Art House was founded by Artist Matt Manalo through the DiverseWorks Project Freeway Fellowship. Bui’s curatorial programming for Alief Art House features a diverse range of artists and media, including: Thomas Tran’s Crocodile Garden mural and exhibition entitled Glorified Doodles 2020 (May 2020); performance of Picturesque Terrors and exhibition entitled Kumquat Gallery by Kumquat (June 2020); Intimate Restlessness featuring work by Artist Micaela Cadungog (July 2020); In the Placeless by Anh Hà Bùi (August 2020); The Black Out by Kentra Gilbert (October 2020); and a group exhibition entitled Tanya Scott, Janine Pastran, Stefa Witt, and Moe Penders: A Softness Not Yet Felt (December 2020). Bui will continue to organize programs with Manalo at Alief Art House in 2021. Their collaboration underscores the many revolutionary shapes public art can take – featuring performances, murals, installations, and exhibitions in nontraditional locales.
“The disparity between Alief and a museum district was a tremendous driving force for my public art project.” – Antonius-Tín Bui
Marsha Dorsey-Outlaw, District K, Geo’d
Marsha Dorsey-Outlaw’s installation, Geo’d, is a collaborative, large-scale mosaic currently on view outside Townwood Community Center. So many of Houston’s historic neighborhoods are undergoing a mind blowing evolution – polarized by perceptions of inheritance-VS-seizure. The embrace of a community’s cultural gifts is what binds the roots of its people in celebration and motivation, rather than paralyzing dread. Geo’d is a celebration of individual and collective vitality. It is a whimsical interpretation of those unassuming rocks that delight the viewer with complex cores of color bands and crystal lined cavities. The Geo’d core is a glass, kaleidoscopic offering of “the other” and the propagation of identities, and thus, ideas. The title is employed here as both a condition and self- possessed action: claiming, or even rejecting conventional space and legacy. This mosaic is offered with hope that it becomes a souvenir of the fellowship forged in its making, and an ever- evolving centerpiece for a community that will consume and interpret on its own terms.
“I’ve had the pleasure of working with the greater community, telling their own narrative through art.” – Marsha Dorsey-Outlaw