Mar 4, 2021
Live on Zoom
As an extension of their study exploring the Black diva as a historical figure, vocation, and archetype, 2019–20 artist in residence E. Jane invites filmmaker Ja’Tovia Gary and scholar Claudrena Harold to consider the interior world of Whitney Houston. Together, they will offer alternative ways of understanding the late music icon as a gesture rooted in healing and repair.
This intimate conversation builds on years of online interactions between Jane and Gary regarding Whitney—a figure both artists hold dear—and a previous public dialogue with Jane and art critic Jessica Lynne developed with Gary and presented at BAM's screening of the 2018 documentary Whitney (dir. Kevin Macdonald). These discussions have sought to examine Houston's legacy through a queer, Black feminist lens.
This program will feature live CART captioning. RSVP to receive a Zoom link.
Holding (Space for) Nippy is presented on the occasion of This Longing Vessel: Studio Museum Artists in Residence 2019–20, held at MoMA PS1 as part of a multiyear partnership between The Studio Museum in Harlem, the Museum of Modern Art, and MoMA PS1.
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E. Jane is an interdisciplinary artist and musician. Inspired by Black liberation and womanist praxis, their work incorporates digital images, video, text, performance, sculpture, installation, and sound design. E. Jane’s work explores safety and futurity as it relates to Black femmes, and how Black femmes navigate and negotiate space in popular culture and networked media.
Ja’Tovia Gary is an artist and filmmaker currently living and working in Brooklyn, New York. Gary’s work seeks to liberate the distorted histories through which Black life is often viewed. Through documentary film, experimental video art, and installation, Gary charts the ways structures of power shape our perceptions around representation, race, gender, sexuality, and violence.
Claudrena Harold is a professor of history at the University of Virginia. She is author of The Rise and Fall of the Garvey Movement in the Urban South, 1918–1942, New Negro Politics in the Jim Crow South, and When Sunday Comes: Gospel Music in the Soul and Hip-Hop Eras. She has also co-edited two books, Punitive Turn: New Approaches to Race and Incarceration and Charlottesville 2017: The Legacy of Race and Inequity. As a part of her ongoing work on the history of Black student activism at the University of Virginia, Claudrena has co-directed with Kevin Everson eight short films.
Recommended Reading Didn’t They Almost Have It All?: On Whitney Houston, Robyn Crawford, and The Modern Canon of Female Friendship from Believer Mag
The references run deep: Janet Jackson, Whitney Houston, Mariah Carey, Kandi Burruss, Summer Walker, Mary J. Blige, Tamar Braxton, Daenerys Targaryen, and Zora Neale Hurston. Be sure to take notes
In the second year of a multi-part collaboration, The Studio Museum in Harlem is pleased to present its annual Artist-in-Residence exhibition at MoMA PS1. This Longing Vessel features new work