Saturday, July 22, 3-5pm in the Theater at the Queens Museum
Set on Freedom (SoF) was an artist retreat organized by the Open A.I.R. Artist Service Program at the Queens Museum for women, gender non-conforming, trans, queer artists of color in the summer of 2016. The program was held following violent tragedies like the mass shooting at Pulse and in the midst of several high-profile acts of police brutality that took the lives of Black people. Over the course of the year, a group of queer artists of color from the summit continued to hold space to discuss how the themes of displacement, dispossession, home, and strength have impacted their everyday experiences and informed their artistic practices. One year following the inaugural SoF retreat, the works presented in this exhibition and accompanying program series, Set on Freedom, were created during the artists’ work to foster an inclusionary and mutually-supportive artistic community. Acting as self-disciplined cultural organizers during this process, the exhibiting artists have explored their own representations of race, gender, sexuality, and love, de-centering whiteness and imagining radical systems of progress to uplift themselves as queer artists of color.
In collaboration with Hot Cabinet, which consists of two other participants of the SoF retreat – Tiffany Joy Butler and Devyn Manibo, a screening will be held in the theater adjacent to the Set on Freedom Exhibition in the Community Partnership Gallery. Tiffany Joy and Devyn curated an amazing set of videos and films that address the working dynamics of the Set on Freedom exhibition such as displacement, dispossession, home, and strength. During the curatorial process, Tiffany Joy focused on centering work from Queens-based video/filmmakers and artists of color who were raised in Queens neighborhoods, and whose work is influenced by this idea of home.
Including work from:
Julian De Mayo & Luis Gallo
Milton Xavier Trujillo & Christian Guiñanzaca
Featured Image: Still from Umber Majeed, Body of Water, 2015
Below is more information about the films/videos:
Director: Carrie Hawks
Editor: Véronique Doumbé
Sound Design: Mauricio Escamilla
Voice Talent: Heather Marie Scholl, Jacquelyn Ackeifi, Deacon O’Connor, Chris Cook
RT: 22m 6s
A queer oddball seeks approval from black peers despite a serious lack of hip-hop credentials.
Trigger warning: Images of a character cutting themself.
La Sala En Roosevelt/ The Living Room on Roosevelt
Cameras: Christian Guiñanzaca, Milton X. Trujillo
Sound: Milton X. Christian, Stephanie Ospina
Editor: Milton X. Trujillo
Subtitles: Milton X., Christian
Music: “Chimbita Theme” from El Corredor Del Jaguar EP by Combo Chimbita courtesy of Combo Chimbita
RT: 3m 14s
La Sala En Roosevelt is a video made of the collaboration between local Queens artist Ro Garrido and the grassroots organization Queens Neighborhoods United, with the support from The Laundromat Project during the Summer of 2016. The collaboration proposed to engage the community of Jackson Heights by creating, out on the open in Roosevelt Ave, an intimate, personal, visually striking space where community members could engage one another and speak about challenges they face in their neighborhoods around immigration, policing, and gentrification.The public art project, while engaging community, also questions the use and identity of intimate, personal spaces and public spaces.
HEY, HOW YA DOIN? EP. 7: Rosie
Camera: Sonya Belakhlef
Interviewer: Ashok Kondabolu
Interviewee: Rosie from Corona
Theme: Alex Dadras
Logo: Ho-Mui Wong
RT: 2m 29s
The seventh episode in a series of “people on the street” interviews conducted throughout New York City by Queens-native Ashok Kondabolu.
Director: Neha Gautam
Cinematographer: Neha Gautam
Editor: Neha Gautam
Sound: Riya Ortiz
Music: John Henry Dale
RT: 9m 31s
The story of a Filipino domestic worker who is a survivor of labor trafficking and domestic violence. Juana leaves the Philippines for a better life but has to overcome many challenges including having to fight for herself and finally for her community.
Mil novecientos sesenta y cuatro
Editors: Julian De Mayo & Luis Gallo
Footage from ABC and NBC
RT: 1m 30s
It was 1964, the world’s eyes were on New York as the World Fair opened at Flushing Meadows Park in Corona, Queens. Yet racial and economic disparities split New York City school system, prompting nearly half a million black and Latinx students – nearly half of the city’s student body – to participate in a boycott against school segregation. Bayard Rustin and Reverend Milton Galamison, from Siloam Presbyterian Church in Bed-Stuy, mobilized a wide coalition of students, parents and teachers on the massive walk-out. Freedom schools were organized throughout the day. That same year the Board of Education introduced an initiative to pair white schools with colored schools – bussing students from one school district to the other as a means of integrating student bodies. The move infuriated white parents who took to the streets in protest of the policy. Jackson Heights became a nucleus of white, anti-desegregationist activism.
Mil novecientos sesenta y cuatro uses 1964 – the year of New York City’s controversial World’s Fair- to surface and celebrate the legacy of educational justice activism in Corona, Queens, and New York City. By activating the collective memory of black and brown struggles we hope to inspire and expand our community’s sense of belonging and power. This project developed as part of an artist residency at Immigrant Movement International – Corona and is the product of consultation with the IMI community.
A Use For Rope or String
Performers: Dionne Lee and Nkiru Oparah
RT: 8m 17s
Two hands create, lose control of, and rebuild a permeable space that comes in and out of view.
Director: Stephanie Ospina
RT: 1m 27s
A short film about a healing trip to Panama.
aquí(que?_ya.o)aquí|rr.eⁿtangl.d [v 2.1]
Artist: ray ferreira
RT: 8m 25s
Moving through the Amerikkkan manifold
flattened spatiotempor(al/ o ) relations
begin to denature
appear in bleach
Does bleach erase fields?
19 7 8 2 0 15
Body of Water
Artist: Umber Majeed
RT: 9m 01s
Body of Water is a single channel video piece that is an exploration on marking how the body attempts to move in water, land, and the digital realm. The materiality of the green screen paper (digital fabric) is enacted as the bodies shift; through these movements the surface continues to exist as well as the formation of an uncanny relationship to swimming. There is a merging and delay of actual and imagined realities through references to stock footage readily available on Youtube against an recorded ‘immediacy’ of the amateur performers. This simple gesture grapples at the futile attempt towards social mobility and a yearning for fluidity in motion as if in water.
Director: Alejandra Araujo
Producer: Alejandra Araujo
DP: Cody Powers
Editor: Alejandra Araujo
Assistant Director: Paul Head
Assistant Camera: Colton Huynh
Grip/Gaffer: Jorge Morillo
Production Assistant: Katarina Pittis
Original Music by Concrete Waves
RT: 4m 45s
Shot on 16mm film and inspired by David Eagleman’s “Sum: Forty Tales of the Afterlives”, this short tale will make you question life after death. What happens after you pass away? No one knows for sure but in this afterlife, you relive all of your experiences in the past five years before your death, except this time with the events reshuffled into a new order. All the moments that share a quality are grouped together and happen all at once.
Collaborators: Devyn Mañibo, Jesse Manuel Graves, and Sara Salazar
A ritualistic offering to the sea, to home, a meditation in reception and reflection, an homage to familial and ancestral spiritual practice. The setting is sunrise at a city beach. Two performers are draped in soft cloth, it is swept into waves. The performers kneel in the sand and send their gifts to be carried away by tender current.
Artist: H.H. Coatl
RT: 5m 52s
Dialogue by Mother
An excerpt from a conversation with my mother about her previous marriage, and relationship with family in Santa Ana Coatepec Mexico in the early 70’s.
Artist: Kevin Marin
RT: 4m 50s
Multichannel video with layered voice memos
Trigger warning: Needle puncturing skin.
In The Name of Identity
Cinematographer: Ladin Awad
Director: Ladin Awad
Editor: Ladin Awad
RT: 10m 35s
A film documentary exploring identity politics in Sudan through a personal journey that also seeks to contribute to a national and global discussion about identity, home, belonging, and modernity in post-colonial societies.