From the curator’s statement:
Truth is in the water; thick, Mississippi water. For those who have not forgotten her, she offers a particular kind of reflection and when that water mixes with the challenges of the black contemporary, a work emerges that not only allows for transformative experiences, it creates a transformational practice. I have watched Mitchell Squire’s practice invoke a depth of clarity that both informs his sense of self and allows him escape from all the formalisms that keep artists loaded with the burden of particular histories. Squire’s desire to engage the black imaginary has been evident throughout his strident career as an architect and now, there’s no need for hyphens. The ability to deliver questions around the American narrative and dig deeper into the things that have no name, need no representational admonitions and most certainly fight quietly, give us a great opportunity to see work that is not overly sympathetic to “THE CAUSE,” but implicates us all, as viewers, as believers and skeptics. —Theaster Gates
Mitchell Squire is an installation artist, sculptor and performance artist based in Iowa. He is primarily known for his work that explores culture through collected artifacts. He historicizes the performative aspects of objects through strategies of association and the incorporation of provocative materials including human hair, candy, and athletic tape, in an attempt to tease out the presence of complex structures of desire. In 2010, Squire was the recipient of the Midwest Voices and Vision award, administered by the Alliance of Artists Communities and funded by The Joyce Foundation, and the Camille Hanks Cosby Fellowship to participate in the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture. A nationally recognized educator in the field of architecture, his published works include the poetic treatise “Paris Done Burnt!” in White Papers, Black Marks: Architecture, Race and Culture (2000), and the object collection “cultureWARE: Implements of Desire; or EAT THIS!” in Eating Architecture (2004). He is currently an Associate Professor of Architecture and holds both Bachelor and Master of Architecture degrees from Iowa State University. This is Squire’s first solo exhibition in New York City.