BRIC Announces Oasa Duverney: Black Power Wave
2018-19 BRIC ArtFP Artist Oasa Duverney Creates Large-Scale, Allegorical, Graphite Drawings to Explore Cultural Networks and Forms of Protest
On View: December 5, 2019–February 2, 2020
Opening Reception: December 4, 2019 | 7-9PM
Oasa Duverney, Black Power Wave (detail), 2019. Courtesy of BRIC.
(Brooklyn — November 22, 2019) BRIC is pleased to announce Black Power Wave, a solo exhibition by Oasa Duverney, a 2019-20 recipient of BRIC’s ArtFP open call initiative. The exhibition is curated by BRIC Curator, Jennifer Gerow, and will be presented in BRIC’s Project Room from December 5, 2019 - February 2, 2020, with an opening reception on December 4, 2019, from 7-9PM.
Black Power Wave is centered around several iterations of large-scale, dimensional graphite drawings of waves—an allegorical exploration of urgencies of communal protests against social injustices, many of which are impossible to put into words.
Duverney deliberately utilizes every aspect of her drawings to fulfill a symbolic or allegorical function. She focuses on drawing because it is an affordable and transportable medium, something that is accessible to almost anyone; there is an inherent freedom in that availability. The fact that drawing is often under-valued in contemporary art is not lost on her, as she is frequently asked by gallerists if she makes paintings. It harkens to the histories of people of color, which are consistently undervalued, and specifically to colloquial ideas of the Black Power Movement. Her use of waves touches upon the fluid nature and purging capabilities of water as well as its momentum and continuity. Through her work, Duverney asks us to see, in her words, “this experience of black power in a way that makes it a universal experience as necessary as water.”
All of these aspects are tied to her understanding of social protest as an individual who grew up in a Black Caribbean Chinese family. Like a wave, bodies come together to march, but as people leave the protest, its momentum and meaning moves with them into other areas of their lives. With Black Power Wave, Duverney speaks to the communal nature of black power and protest, as well as the constructed nature of social hierarchies and networks. The large-scale nature of her drawing, which will take up an entire wall in BRIC’s Project Room, immerses the viewer in the complexities of otherness. The inevitable, all-encompassing swell of these movements told through a simple wave and laid down in an unassuming, accessible medium creates a sublime symbol, encouraging us to question the absurdity of constructed networks in favor of genuine community.
About Oasa Duverney
DuVerney was born in Queens, NY. Select group exhibitions include: Brooklyn Museum, Studio Museum in Harlem, BRIC, and Postmasters Gallery, all NY. She has been in residence at BRIC Workspace, Rush Philanthropic Foundation, Smack Mellon, and LMCC Workspace Residency, all NY. She was recently selected for the award and exhibition “Women to Watch” by the National Museum of Women in the Arts. DuVerney along with Mildred Beltre is part of the artist collaborative, Brooklyn Hi-Art Machine.
BRIC ArtFP is an open call initiative led by BRIC’s Contemporary Art program, where local artists receive honorariums and production fees for exhibition of their work in BRIC’s Project Room or Hallway spaces. Recipients also receive assistance with development, installation, marketing, and more.
BRIC is the leading presenter of free cultural programming in Brooklyn, and one of the largest in New York City. The organization presents and incubates work by artists and media-makers that reflects the diversity of New York. BRIC programs reach hundreds of thousands of people each year. BRIC’s main venue, BRIC House, offers a public media center, major contemporary art exhibition space, two performance spaces, a glass-walled TV studio, and artist workspaces. BRIC’s acclaimed programs include the BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn! Festival in Prospect Park; groundbreaking media initiatives, including BRIC TV, BRIC Radio, and Brooklyn Free Speech; and renowned contemporary art exhibitions. BRIC also offers education and community-building programs at BRIC House and throughout Brooklyn.
Account Coordinator, Cultural Counsel