Nov 30th 2018

Toni Alexia Roach: Cantabitan

@ ARC Gallery

1463 W Chicago Ave, Chicago, IL 60647

Opening Friday, November 30th, from 7PM - 8PM

On view through Saturday, December 22nd

CANTABITAN: Performance Fri. Nov 30, 7pm

Note! This exhibition is at ARC’s new location: 1463 W Chicago Ave

“Cantabitan” is a combination of the Latin word, cantabo, which means to sing, and the Yoruba word for story, which is itan. The literal translation of the opposing tongues is essentially what spirituals are: sung stories. While they are contemporarily used as a form of peaceful protest, spirituals give grave insight to the turmoil that African slaves faced on their unrequited journey from east to west. The songs are beautiful, but harrowing. In Cantabitan, they are sung in formal tonality, with an informal tongue. This unlikely pairing of styles is a beautiful result of the ugly truth of colonization. African slaves took on – not only their oppressor’s deity, but their Latin languages as well, forsaking their native religions, rituals, and verbiage in exchange for a new identity. Under the guise of submission, they began to use these spirituals to express their woes, tell their stories, and salvage their identities.

“My work explores ideas of hierarchy, embodying themes of coexistence and duality. Often times I find myself forcing contradictions of medium and theory to work together harmoniously, not only to bring about aesthetic cohesion, but also to make valid unlikely or unimaginable ideals, breaking the rules of convention to firm my own utopia.”

Performance, Friday, November 30, 7pm
Exhibition dates: Nov 28 – Dec 22 , 2018
Gallery hours: Wed to Sat 12-6 pm, and Sun. 12-4 pm

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