It’s just a few minutes before 2016 and I just want to jot down a few thoughts here:
2015 has been an amazing year! There has been so much. At the top of 2015 I reconnected with Wang Jian Wei (a Chinese artist I visited in Beijing back in 2009) at his solo exhibition at the Guggenheim Museum, I did the Creative Capital workshops and executed the X Speaks project all in February. I’m still amazed that I was able to do X Speaks. Bi ithni Allah, with the help of so many friends and the wonderful resourcefulness of Margari Aziza Hill of Muslim ARC it was a success. Every now and then someone who I had no idea was even paying attention tells me how impactful that project was for them. Followng X Speaks, I did a multimedia performance lecture and exhibited with my late professor Terry Adkins and Carrie Mae Weems in the Under Color of Law exhibition in April. In April I was invited to participate in an auction at the Contemporary Arts Museum, St. Louis and my work received several bids. I got to keep half of what it sold for, so I respect the CAM St. Louis for their auction policy and support for artists. I look forward to the opportunity to work with them again in another capacity in the future. I went back to Cali that same month and visited the Yerba Buena Center. Throughout the spring I took drawing, waterless lithography, and screen printing classes to sharpen my skills and have some fun. In May I started Sapelo Square – an online publication focusing on the African American Muslim experience with my friend Dr. Su’ad Abdul Khabeer. We are going strong with new content every week and really, I should post more about that on this blog. I had a fun summer which included lots of time in the pool with my son, and enjoying the outdoors with him and my husband. August was a blast! I spent some quality time with my family in Brooklyn, vacationed with my AKA line sisters in Sint Maarten, and participated in the Black Artists Retreat in Chicago. Thanks to Jina Valentine for being so instrumental in getting me there. Being at BAR was like a dream and I would just love to be around more Black Artists and curators more often in 2016. The fall rolled in with my solo exhibition in Durham at the Room 100 Gallery, and a Southern Constellations retrospective at the John and June Alcott Gallery at UNC, Chapel Hill. In October and November, after 3 years of not being in Texas, I got to travel back there 2x to exhibit at Project Rowhouses and the Contemporary Arts Museum, Houston and reconnect with two of my favorite art community people: Eric Schnell at the Galveston Artist Residency and Valerie Cassel Oliver at CAMH. Both of them are so supportive and kind, and I feel warm and fuzzy around them… BIG HUGS. I couldn’t even express here how much I appreciate them and what they do and just love to be in their company. The year ended out with me being awarded with a grant from the Durham Arts Council, giving a talk at the Stanford L Warren Library, getting sick with a horrible cold, going to my sister’s wedding and sitting in front my computer now.
In 2015 I travelled for the first time without my son to do art projects, to vacation, and I even travelled for over a week with him to install at Project Rowhouses. It was such an adventure. Sometimes I felt a little crazy for it. But, I did enjoy.
Ok, so for 2016 I have some great things lined up: the continuation of my exhibitions at Project Rowhouses and the Contemporary Arts Museum into mid and late February; and in October Kruger Gallery in Chicago will present my first solo exhibition at their commercial art gallery inshAllah. I’m excited for the unknowns as well.
Ok, so they shootin’ outside so that must mean that it is officially 2016… Happy New Year !!!