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Secret Identities: Inverted Utopias

This is a text I wrote about the photographs that will be in Secret Identities: Masks and the Art of Concealment. My website is: www.priscilaclaure.com

INVERTED UTOPIAS: DECOLONIZING NARRATIVES 

RAZA DE BRONCE 

“…We all shared five hundred years of exploitation and colonization, we were all linked by a common fate, we all belonged to the same race of the oppressed”.  Isabel Allende, in Foreword for Open Veins of Latin America

I would like to write a manifesto, I would like to communicate hope. I would like us to be fearless. One sometimes writes what the soul heavily carries, but one sometimes writes what is inscribed inside one’s past. I would also like to understand the process of decolonization, and try to forgive the one of colonization and exploitation but I do not intend to forget. We do not want to forget, and we shall not forget.

 I come from the world of forgotten heroes and heroines. My veins are made of topography of a forgotten native land. How did we produce historical narratives as a way of writing revolution, in times of oppression, exploitation and colonization? That topography is the one that carries the paths of our ancestors, our history. Can those narratives be as powerful as tales that heal and as words that give hope to resist? I am interested in “autoethnography”, as a process of courage and endurance, and as a meditative state between the truth and fiction; in which the only truth that exists belongs to the possessors of power, but to those who’s truth was taken from their immortal hands, that truth is here to be shared. And that truth is here to stay. I aim to reclaim roots from our past and at the same time to emancipate from it. In order to reveal our identity and to awaken our consciousness, there is a thin line among the collective memory, in which the failure is already proven. The only fate that was given to us, was taken from us, therefore we left our rights to the destiny, and our story to the oppressors, showing our conformity and our internalized feeling of inferiority one more time. The acquisition of our real freedom was imaginary, and the hope of recovery was vanished, the recovery of the resources that have always been usurped, which is the ultimate legacy to recover our destiny. The true name of all things is preserved generation after generation and the freedom is not given but taken.

About Slavery and Colonization: I am uncovering and juxtaposing two silenced narratives of realities that meet and connect at the very same start point: the erasure of history. In this diaspora, I use photographic documentation of specific places in California where Slavery occurred during the period of the Gold Rush, and I reinforce the placement and connection to these sites with my own body, through performative actions and self-portraiture, I create a new autoethnographic history as a way of self-representation that reproduces a mode of resistance and celebrates decolonizing narratives. These hidden and forgotten stories are presented today because I want to reconnect them physically within specific geographic locations, which are already highly historically impacted and charged. The ones who have the power to rewrite history have erased both chronicles, and these untold tragedies exist in these images; consequently I am able to transgress time through space and I reinforce and appropriate the ownership of this discourse created by the colonizers and protest against the displacement and dispossession of our real memoir.

New Skye Band

A beautiful performance on the Chroma Backyard Stage during Artwalk, Saturday August 5. Members of the New Skye Band, Michael Bryant, vocals and guitar and Bruce the bass player, were joined by Willie Perez, lead guitar and Susan Ballinger, fiddle and vocals.

Crossing Boundaries

A brief history of “Solidarity” (acrylics on wood, in a painted redwood frame) featured in CROSSING BOUNDARIES, the politically themed art exhibit at Chroma Gallery. I was inspired by Vito Paulekis’s sculpture, commissioned by Steve Allen for the first Tonight Show. In turn, it was inspired by an emblem for the first fire department on this continent which was formed in 1753 by Ben Franklin and others.

 

NATURAL VISIONS: Artwork by Simmon Factor

Saturday, March 4 through April 28, 2017

on view in the Display Gallery at

Spring Lake Village, 5555 Montgomery Drive, Santa Rosa

Call Simmon 707-293-6051 for a personal tour of the art

With the confidence acquired from many years of paintings, drawing and teaching, Simmon creates in a versatile variety of styles and media. In this exhibit you see a sample of the themes and series which the artist returns to again and again. Inspired by previous works, he’ll add rich, multiple layers, building patterns, filling the surface with color and beauty.

Themes include local wildlife, faces and figures, homes, music, relationships and always – nature.

The model disrobes

The model disrobes, steps upon the platform and she takes a pose. At tables and easels the artists are ready, their charcoals are poised, and as their eyes travel around and through the models curves and shadows, the hands work to capture the gesture on paper.

Sessions usually begin with several short poses, sometimes only minutes long. This ritual, in addition to being a warm-up for the longer poses to follow, teach the artists to quickly connect their eyes and hands with the drawing.

Watching the artist rather than the model, you see them look up every few seconds roving their gaze around the model. They memorize the curve of a muscle and transfer that line to the paper, moving around the figure and capturing various relationships, such as the length of a forearm and how it drapes over the belly making a shadow there.

The Pleasure of Collecting

Why do we purchase and collect art?

Ars longa, vita brevis: Life is fleeting, art is eternal.

Acquiring art requires more than money or formal art history training, instead what is essential is passion and an eye for quality. Deeply personal, what you choose to collect and place on the wall offer your family and descendants, your friends too, a unique visual perspective into your biography. The satisfaction they brought you, the exhilarating pleasure they gave, live on . Art depends on people to treasure it.

Mind maps & dream stages

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Prepare to be amazed! Visit the new show at Chroma, Visible Dreams and walk into a dream.

You’ll experience optical illusions and visual puns created with meticulous technical skills, as well as, paintings and drawings which spring forth with brush and pencil from the accidental mind in a subconscious state.

Now thru December 3.

Bootleg Honeys

Bootleg Honeys

Another terrific KRCB Concert in the Garden on Saturday, July 16. The Bootleg Honeys singing and playing their original songs and more sweet Americana music. The audience for the backyard concerts continues to grow. The best attended concert, yet!