January 13 - April 21, 2024
From the artist:
“Ritual SpLaVCe is a deconstruction and reconfiguration of The SpLaVCe Ship, a vessel which combines a spaceship and a slave ship as a way of talking about history and visions of a Black future. The SpLaVCe Ship embraces the artist’s Kru and Grebo lineage from Liberia, incorporating and reimagining rituals and beliefs with an emerging iconography all its own. In Ritual SpLaVCe the vessel is unpacked and reassembled in configurations that lean into its mystical and spiritual spaces, combining Kru and Grebo tribal mythology with the science fiction media that the artist consumes. Other elements include sculptures, paintings, and prints. The installation is a meditative Black space for imagination, contemplation, and stillness.
Christopher Blay is an Artist as well as Chief Curator of the Houston Museum of African American Culture. Also a writer, Blay was the News Editor at Glasstire Magazine from 2019 – 2021 and served as curator for the Art Corridor Galleries at Tarrant County College in Fort Worth for theten years prior to Glasstire. Blay has been a guest lecturer at the University of North Texas, Texas Christian University, Tarleton State University, Sam Houston State University, as well as the University of Texas at Arlington and Stephen F. Austin university in Nacogdoches, Texas. Blay has spoken at length about his work at the Dallas Museum of Art, The Kimbell Art Museum in Fort Worth, and the Modern Art Museum in Fort Worth where he moderated a panel discussion on the mural boom in Fort Worth. Blay’s engagement in conferences such as the Texas Society of Architects convention in 2014, and the New Cities, Future Ruins presentation in Dallas in November 2016 are a few of several in a diverse scope of conversations since. His public lectures and panel discussions have also included a 2023 conversation with William Kentridge at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, a 2022 conversation with Mark Sealy of Autograph London, and Witnessing Worlds in Transition, a panel discussion at the Menil Collection in Houston. A list of awards Blay has received for his work includes the Featured Artist Grant at ArtPrize, the Otis and Velma Davis Dozier travel grant from the Dallas Museum of Art, a Nasher Sculpture Center Artist’s Grant, and Critics Choice awards from the Dallas Observer and the Fort Worth Weekly. Blay has served on jury panels for the Inaugural Nest Heritage Craft Prize, at the Nasher Sculpture Center, Southern Methodist University Meadows Museum’s Moss/Chumley award, Big Medium’s Tito’s Prize, and numerous University gallery exhibitions including at Texas State University in San Marcos, and the Juried Members exhibition of the South Central Chapter of the Society for Photographic Education in Dallas.
As an artist, Blay uses photography, video, sculpture, and performance in exhibitions, and his work considers the Black experience in America. His exhibitions and public art projects follow the themes of the Black experience and include the ongoing East Rosedale Monument Project in Fort Worth, Texas, and Dindi (for Annibel) in Dallas’ Coombs Creek park near Oak Cliff. His most recent exhibitions include Christopher Blay: SpLaVCe Program at the Crowley Studios, Marfa, TX, Christopher Blay: SpLaVCe Ship, at the Barry Whistler Gallery in Dallas, and Power, Traps, and Targets: New Work by Christopher Blay at Big Medium gallery, Austin, Texas. Blay was also included in the Amarillo Biennial-600 in Amarillo, Texas in 2022, and the Texas Biennial in 2017. Blay’s work is in several private collections and at the Old Jail Art Center in Albany, Texas. Blay is a 2003 Graduate of Texas Christian University with a BFA in Photography with a minor in Art History.”
Reception: January 14, 2024 | 12–3 am
2127 Strand Street
Galveston, 77550 TX
(409) 763-2403Get directions