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SLO Museum of Art to host Alisa Sikelianos-Carter’s ‘In Space and Splendor’ exhibition 

Alisa_SikelianosCarter_bloom_small

Alisa Sikelianos Carter’s “Bloom.”

Show opens Nov. 18 in San Luis Obispo

– The San Luis Obispo Museum of Art (SLOMA) has announced a forthcoming exhibition, “In Space and Splendor: A Topography of Wildness,” showcasing the work of mixed media painter Alisa Sikelianos-Carter. Scheduled to run from Nov. 18, 2023, to March 10, 2024, in the museum’s Gray Wing, this solo exhibition will immerse viewers in a “world exploring the themes of unconditional, ancestral, and ancient Blackness” through an array of large installations of works on paper and small sculptures.

At the core of Sikelianos-Carter’s artistic practice lies the concept of resilience, infinitude, and the creation of a space where Black individuals exist fully liberated. This idea, reminiscent of the famous quote by queer poet Dinos Christianos, “they buried us, but they didn’t know we were seeds,” serves as the foundation for the artist’s work. Sikelianos-Carter’s creations serve as a direct response to violence against people of color, offering a perspective on survival, protection, and abundance.

Building upon her recent “Crown” series, which features abstract prints utilizing web and catalog-sourced imagery of Black hair representing ancestral beings, Sikelianos-Carter transcends the limitations of small print sizes at SLOMA. Her abstract shapes extend onto the gallery walls, creating an immersive environment that evokes a sense of infinite expansion.

In this latest body of work, Sikelianos-Carter shifts away from figurative representation, instead delving into abstraction to construct her magical worlds. Drawing inspiration from geography and geology, encompassing land, sea, and sky, the artist envisions a realm where marginalized communities claim boundless and limitless space. Throughout the gallery, small, grainy, rock-like forms are placed on the floor, resembling planetary surfaces and enhancing the otherworldly atmosphere—a celestial land of freedom.

The intricate layering of texture and glitter in the installation is reminiscent of relief sculpture, transforming the entire wall as it shifts from different angles. Sikelianos-Carter’s work asserts that Black features embody a sacred and divine technology that has served as both a physical and metaphysical means of survival. Her vision extends to a cosmically abundant world that celebrates and pays homage to ancestral majesty, power, and aesthetics.

Accompanying the exhibition is an off-site installation at Hotel San Luis Obispo, featuring two large-scale prints from the “Crown” series and small new works on paper directly mounted on the walls.

This exhibition is made possible by the California Polytechnic State University Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion’s Resonance Cultural Arts Series.

“In Space and Splendor: A Topology of Wildness” will run from Nov. 18, 2023, to March 10, 2024, with a member preview scheduled for Friday, Nov. 17, from 6–8 p.m. and an artist’s talk with Sikelianos-Carter on Nov. 18 at 11 a.m. at the Palm Theater.

Further information is available at www.sloma.org.

 

 

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The news staff of the Paso Robles Daily News wrote or edited this story from local contributors and press releases. The news staff can be reached at info@pasoroblesdailynews.com.