Season one recorded in 2020 serves as an extension of Cage Match project. Curator, Aryel René Jackson interviews ten local, state, and international Black and Hispanic artists, engineers, and designers about their practices and interpretations of “the cage”.
Rachel Means shares how she incorporates line, natural fibers, and found materials to explore ritual, Christian faith, and nature. Her work explores form and ways of becoming. Means earned her Master of Fine Arts at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts before arriving in Austin, Texas. Episode Art: “Remembered Humility” 2019 by Rachel Means. https://www.rachelsreflections2014.com
André Fuqua is an interdisciplinary artist based in Austin, Texas. André Fuqua talks about how his background of engineering and southern familial heritage influences and directs the materials and subjects of his artistic practice. Fuqua discusses the ethos of materials as he explains his developing term “material symbolism” and how cultural and societal symbols develop out of our surroundings and cultural heritage. Episode Art: “A He” 2015 courtesy of the artist. https://www.andreishere.us
Stephanie Concepcion Ramirez b. 1984 is a Salvadoran-American artist from Prince George’s County, Maryland. She received her BFA at Old Dominion University in Norfolk, VA and her MFA at the University of Texas at Austin. Her work is based on notions of memory, personal and historical amnesia that trace the veins of the Central American diaspora. In an attempt to reconcile with her personal and cultural histories and memories, she combines images, installations and text that validate truth, false memories, filtered history and fantasy. Ramirez is privileged and grateful to currently work and live in the original land of the Akokisa people.
Aimée M. Everett is originally from New Orleans, Louisiana. She now lives and works in Austin, Texas. Everett’s work has been showcased in galleries and included in collections in New York, Los Angeles, New Orleans, Dallas, Austin, and Canada.
Torkwase Dyson (b. 1973, Chicago) describes herself as a painter working across multiple mediums to explore the continuity between ecology, infrastructure, and architecture. Dyson’s abstract works are visual and material systems used to construct fusions of surface tension, movement, scale, real and finite space. With an emphasis on the ways black and brown bodies perceive and negotiate space as information, Dyson looks to spatial liberation strategies from historical and contemporary perspectives, seeking to uncover new understandings of the potential for more livable geographies.
Mukhtara Ayọtẹjú Adékúnbi Yusuf (they/them) is a Lagos-based scholar, educator, designer, healer and artist from Ibadan, Nigeria. Mukhtara is the descendant of Yoruba tradeswomen, așǫ oke weavers, onifá, and eleégún. Through practice and theory, warp&weft, writing and design their work highlights the generative qualities of indigenous thinking, story-healing, relations and accessibility.
hiba ali is an afrasian worldbuilder and digital somatics practitioner and shares their digital art in the form of immersive digital environments, sculpture-based installations, moving images, garments, and sound. born in karachi, pakistan, they grew up in chicago and toronto and belong to east african, south asian and arab diasporas. they are a practitioner and (re)learner of swahili, urdu, arabic and spanish languages. they developed the term, digital somatics, to embody the body-mind-spirit connection to the principles of game design and narrative storytelling. they use virtual reality, 3d animation and augmented reality to slow down time and create portals of solace and care and consider the digital portal as a liminal space where they call forth more loving and healing into our world.
A native of Ethiopia, Betelhem Makonnen is an artist living in Austin, TX, with a MFA from the School of Art Institute of Chicago and a BA in History and Literature of Africa/African Diaspora from UT Austin. Her work in photography, video, installation and writing is shown nationally and internationally– including Women & Their Work, The Contemporary Austin, The Philbrook Museum of Art, Big Medium, Le Musée des Abattoirs, and The Carver Museum, with performances and screenings at The Blanton Museum, IVAHM, and Casa Daros. Her work has been featured in a variety of publications including Artforum, NYT, Frieze, Hyperallergic, Zoetrope, O Menelick 2º Ato, Revista Lampejo, and Glasstire. In addition to her practice she co-organizes Addis Video Art Festival, a platform for video art in Ethiopia, and is a co-founder member of the Austin-based arts collective Black Mountain Project.
taylor barnes is a contemporary fibers artist and ceramicist. Her work consists primarily of mixed media fibers techniques and charcoal on cloth. barnes work takes on subjects of spirituality, oral histories, power, and bell hooks philosophies of object and subject. Her figures being understood as her spiritual guides unbound by time, barnes is lead to construct spaces in which their discoveries of truth are to be revealed.
Kara Springer holds degrees from the University of Toronto, ENSCI les Ateliers in Paris, and the Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia. Her work has been exhibited at the Philadelphia Institute of Contemporary Art, the National Gallery of the Bahamas, the National Gallery of Jamaica, and the Frankfurt Museum of Applied Arts. She is an alum of the Independent Study Program at the Whitney Museum of American Art and currently holds a fellowship with the Museum of Fine Arts Houston Core Program.