New Yorker, 2012

Goings On About Town: ART “Lorraine O’Grady”, New Yorker, May, 2012.

This concise show, by the septuagenarian artist, presents two photocollages from 1991 and an atmospheric video from 2011.  One image depicts an evergreen sprouting from the trunk of a tropical palm tree, which grows out of a black woman’s supine torso in lieu of soil.  (The artist was born in New England to West Indian parents.)  The other, more disturbing work,

is titled “The Clearing”: a naked black woman, seemingly dead, is attended to by a skeleton; two children play near a handgun lying on the ground.  Both works smack of the essentialist critique of nineties identity politics.  But given the recent shooting of Trayvon Martin, issues of racial bias feel urgently relevant.  Through May 19

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