“Through the experience of looking at/ participating in my artwork, I am inviting my audiences to embrace new possibilities that challenge traditional boundaries of race, nationhood, and religion; and create wholly new constructions that broaden our collective imaginations.”– Nsenga Knight
Nsenga Knight’s Artist Statement:
My photographs, paintings, drawings, and collaborative social practice projects reference Islamic ritual and cosmology, Black history archives, and personal memoirs. My interdisciplinary creative process is grounded in research and experimentation within abstract, documentary and conceptual art traditions.
I was born in Brooklyn, NY to parents who immigrated to the US from the Caribbean and South America in the 1970’s as teenagers and converted from Christianity to Islam as young adults, raising me within their new faith and country. Their fluid and willful transitions between place, philosophies, and histories has developed my understanding of the visual world – its nuances and boundaries, and the need to resist, reevaluate, and push beyond its limits.
Each body of my artwork reflects my subjective and permutational response to history and place, navigating connections across time, geography, and cultures. Through the experience of looking at/ participating in my artwork, I am inviting my audiences to embrace new possibilities that challenge traditional boundaries of race, nationhood, and religion; and create wholly new constructions that broaden our collective imaginations.
Nsenga Knight’s Bio:
Nsenga Knight was born in 1981 in Brooklyn, New York. She currently lives and works in Cairo, Egypt and New York. She has exhibited her artwork at Contemporary Image Collective in Cairo, Egypt, the New Museum for Contemporary Art, New York, NY; PS1 MoMA; the Drawing Center, New York, NY; Contemporary Arts Museum, Houston; Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Art, Brooklyn, NY; BRIC Arts; AIR Gallery; Berman Museum of Art at Ursinus College, Pennsylvania; Arthur Ross Gallery at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA; Project Rowhouses, Houston, TX; Smack Mellon, Brooklyn, NY; among others.
Knight has been awarded with a Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant, a Foundation for Contemporary Arts grant, a Southern Constellations Fellowship, the Leeway Foundation Art and Change Grant, and Brooklyn Arts Council grants. She has held artist residencies at BRICworkspace in Brooklyn, NY, the Drawing Center in New York, Elsewhere Museum in Greensboro, North Carolina, the Galveston Artist Residency in Galveston, Texas, Brandywine Workshop in Philadelphia, Film/Video Arts Center in New York, and was a BCAT/ Rotunda Gallery Multimedia Artist in Resident in Brooklyn, NY.
Knight earned a Masters of Fine Arts degree at the University of Pennsylvania, a Bachelor of Arts in Film Production at Howard University.
Contact Nsenga Knight