As part of CLACS Professor Katherine Smith's class "Caribbean Political Imaginaries", Haitian-born photographer Fabiola Jean Louis will be attending the class to talk about her photography and present her project "Rewriting History".
Rewriting History: paper gowns and photographs
is an inquiry into social change. How much has society really changed since the beginning of slavery? Do Black lives matter even in the 21st century? The exhibition interrogates these questions and more through a haunting photographic essay and paper sculptures styled to mimic garments worn by female European nobility between the 15th – 19th centuries. As part of a developing master series of paper gown sculptures, the series speaks to the shocking treatment of Blacks throughout history and the trauma inflicted on their bodies as juxtaposed with the abstract idea of Black freedom.
Simultaneously, it engages with a vision of the future – one of hope, strength, resilience, and beauty. The materials used for the paper gown sculptures are transformed in a way that allows me to represent layers of time and the events of the past as they intrude upon the present. Through the materials, I suggest that although we cannot change the past, we can act to change the present, as we activate the memories, visions, and legacies of our ancestors. Rewriting History seeks to reconnect viewers to the past so that parallels with current events are amplified.
This event is free and open to NYU students. ID is required to enter the building.