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Emerson Contemporary Eyes Identity in Student-Curated Show

abstract art
Neetu Singhal’s “Blue Dimensions,” part of I: An Intimate Reflection at the Media Art Gallery.

Emerson Contemporary’s current exhibition explores issues of identity through the work of 10 emerging artists, curated by 14 Emerson students in Leonie Bradbury’s Curating Contemporary Art course.

I: An Intimate Reflection, on view at the Media Art Gallery through Sunday, December 12, presents a space to consider subjective differences in intersectional identities, as well as ways to explore how implicit biases may be challenged. It includes a wide range of media, including photography, steel sculpture, acrylic painting, digital video, and hand-sewn mixed media.

Emerson Contemporary issued a public call for Boston-area emerging artists, and selected 10:

Semaj Campbell’s photographic series challenges preconceived notions of Blackness with striking stills reminiscent of Neoclassical paintings.

Willoughby Lucas Hastings’ mixed media piece, “Do you know what posh means?” critiques the mistreatment of workers in the service industry and assumptions about them.

Asma Khoshmehr’s augmented reality and photography series, Act 6, explores the impact of child and forced marriage of women in Tanzania, aiming to expose harmful stereotypes that depict women as subhuman.

Billy Lyons’ “Weather Advisory” depicts his struggles with mental health and depression in a vibrant acrylic on canvas painting reminiscent of ‘90s hip-hop and graffiti.

Emily Manning-Mingle pairs rigid and fluid lines to communication with viewers in an intensely personal way.

Bridget Mara-Williams, a third-generation foundry person, exaggerates the size and scale of traditionally feminine products in her steel and aluminum works “You Don’t Want a Haircut” and “Check for Dirt Under Nails.”

Elizabeth (Liz) Rennie’s “Could We Ever” and “All Behind Me” explore the feelings of displacement and otherness by highlighting both the connection and disconnection between mixed media objects.

Neetu Singhal blends neuroscience and spirituality in her silk screen paintings on canvas, “A Womb” and “Blue Dimensions.”

Stephanie Van Riet captures an intimate reflection of her relationship with her grandmother, who is suffering with memory loss, through her oil paintings “Disconnected I and II”.

Zhiqian Wang’s work acknowledges the tendency to characterize ourselves and each other in limited ways. In a digital video of her own installation, “Yellow,” she welcomes dismantling how we think about and see the world.

The student curators are responsible for all aspects of the exhibition, including exhibition design, building a website, loan agreements, checklists, educational materials, social media assets, and press materials.

Student curators are Hadly Breault, Cameron Carleton, Maxwell Gaan, Leah Heath, Isabella Kulukundis, Alyssa Raine Lara, Taina Millsap, Aidan O’Flaherty, Kresha Sewani, Daria Shulga, Paige Thomas, Henry Tyndall, Mariley Torres-Ojeda, and Madeline Wendricks.

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