Description - Group Spirit - Wild Style by Peres Projects

Group Spirit is an exhibition of works by contemporary artists alongside works of unknown African artists from the Bassa, Gola, Mende, and Vai people - of what is present day Liberia and Sierra Leone. Many of the contemporary works in Group Spirit use rough, non-artistic materials that achieve elevated status through their association with twentieth-century abstract art - a once-renegade style that conveys emotion and transcendent meaning. Liberated from literal narratives and relatable references, the contemporary works in Group Spirit evoke spiritually awakened aesthetic codes, customs, and traditions, speaking in the same voice as the masks' tribal ceremonies that initiated individuals into their communities. Wild Style explores depictions of the human figure by contemporary artists and unknown African artists from 200 BC to the present. Wild Style establishes a horizontal as opposed to vertical paradigm, inviting the viewer to experience an exhibition where contemporary works of art stand on par with those from other cultures and periods. The works selected highlight the invisible bond linking 21st century artists and those of prior generations. However, drawing associations between the two is not to say that the works are actually connected in one way or another. On the contrary, at times the disparities may be more profound than the congruities between these works and artists, yet by juxtaposing them we may gain new understanding about ourselves and our fascination with the human form. Participating artists: Dan Attoe, Brian Calvin, Alex Da Corte, Cecile B. Evans, Mark Flood, Donna Huanca, Dorothy Iannone, Melike Kara, Dwight Mackintosh, William J. O'Brien, Athena Papadopoulos Major works of classic African sculpture: Bamana or Mossi; Dan, Liberia/Cote d'Ivoire; Eket, Nigeria; Igbo, Nigeria; Ijo, Nigeria; Kaka, Nigeria; Mumuye, Nigeria; Nok, Nigeria; Ogoni, Nigeria; Teke, Democratic Republic of Congo

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