Emily Carris: Reclaimed

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The Art Dept. is proud to present Emily Carris: Reclaimed.
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"One hundred thousand slaves, Black or mulatto, work in sugar mills, indigo and cocoa plantations, sacrificing their lives to gratify our newly acquired appetites for sugar, cocoa, coffee, and tobacco--things unknown to our ancestors." 

--Voltaire, Essay on Morals and Customs, 1756

Reclaimed is an installation born out of search for self. As a transracially adopted black women raised in modern America my story is incomplete, riddled with gaping holes, a result of malicious neglect and the casualty of power, supremacy, domination, and shame. 

This work has been a backroom performance, as I learned new crafts imprinted with the legacy of my ancestors. With their guidance I have created overt, subtle pieces that interweave my experience as their descendent with their stories so often overlooked by today’s craft movement.
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Photographer + fiber artist, Emily Carris has a BA in Education and Photography from Eugene Lang College in New York. She holds a Master's degree in photography from UCA in Kent, England. She has exhibited internationally and has worked as photography teacher and museum educator at the International Center of Photography in New York. Emily is the director of The Art Dept and lives in Philadelphia.

FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 8TH, 6-9PM

We'll be plastering our walls in prints and slathering our tables in zines, so come on out and get messy with us in a pigpen of visual art. Cash n' carry your way to some cultural enrichment!

GIVE A DOLL A HOUSE TO HAUNT What do ghosts do when they aren’t haunting? Go to outer space. Make lists. Window shop. Visit friends. Prank. Be bored. Haunt other ghosts. —Morrill, Tuck & Super Futures Haunt Quollective, Before Dispossession The ghost addresses us, interrogates us with its voice and its gaze; it’s a call from Otherness to which we must respond, even though we are unable to adequately respond. —Steven Shaviro, Spectres of Marx I am a queer, first­-generation Liberian-­American, multidisciplinary artist from Philadelphia. In my creative practice I use drawing, sculpture, writing, printmaking, and performance to meditate on Blackness in the United States and other sites of the African diaspora. I focus on the enduring ability of Black people to reinvent ourselves through inherited and appropriated visual culture and performance. Through my studio practice I study racial caricatures as hand-made memorabilia and mass-produced consumer goods. I recreate these objects through drawing, printmaking, and sculpture while considering my relationship with these Black Objects as a maker and as a racialized body, a black body. We exist together in the world and are subject to a racial imagination that seeks to produce, own, and destroy us.

GIVE A DOLL A HOUSE TO HAUNT

What do ghosts do when they aren’t haunting? Go to outer space. Make lists. Window shop. Visit friends. Prank. Be bored. Haunt other ghosts.

—Morrill, Tuck & Super Futures Haunt Quollective, Before Dispossession

The ghost addresses us, interrogates us with its voice and its gaze; it’s a call from Otherness to which we must respond, even though we are unable to adequately respond.

—Steven Shaviro, Spectres of Marx

I am a queer, first­-generation Liberian-­American, multidisciplinary artist from Philadelphia. In my creative practice I use drawing, sculpture, writing, printmaking, and performance to meditate on Blackness in the United States and other sites of the African diaspora. I focus on the enduring ability of Black people to reinvent ourselves through inherited and appropriated visual culture and performance.

Through my studio practice I study racial caricatures as hand-made memorabilia and mass-produced consumer goods. I recreate these objects through drawing, printmaking, and sculpture while considering my relationship with these Black Objects as a maker and as a racialized body, a black body.

We exist together in the world and are subject to a racial imagination that seeks to produce, own, and destroy us.