SV Showcase: Mickalene Thomas

SV Showcase presents the work of emerging and established artists in a site-specific, month long, exhibition on the #SVLA1 screen in Downtown Los Angeles. Curated by a different gallery or organization each month, the program will be on view through Dec 4, Thursday -Sunday from 9pm-midnight. StandardVision’s goal is to encourage audiences to participate with art in a new outdoor exhibition experience, and to expose the public to contemporary art.

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For this collaboration, guest curator Shelley Holcomb of Curate LA selected three international video artists who are currently exhibiting in the Los Angeles area. Mickalene Thomas’s piece will show every hour during the showcase, alongside tow other artists Sabrina Retté and Julieta Gil.

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Thomas’ work is also exhibited at MOCA in Los Angeles, from October 6 – February 6, 2017. This exhibition is organized by MOCA Curatorial Assistant Rebecca Matalon, with Executive Assistant to the Chief Curator Hana Cohn. Mickalene Thomas: Do I Look Like a Lady? is the most recent work of hers. The exhibition consists of silkscreen portraits in conjunction with an installation inspired by 1970’s home interiors, and a two-channel video that features a group of black female performers that span history.

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Thomas’s work explores the identity, presentation, and representation of the black female through a queer lens. Her work is multi-dimensional, and she approaches a plethora of issues through different media. In this show, Do I Look Like a Lady?, Thomas explores portraiture by deconstructing expectations, and replacing the pervasive white female figures with African American women. Her female figures are empowered, and confident, as opposed to the demure, coy, socially and sexually oppressed female figures rampant throughout art history. Do I Look Like a Lady? explores black pop culture icons and forces the viewer to reconsider them, their representation, and their significance.