Join us for the Closing Reception of the Evanston Art Center’s Fifth SOCIETY! Artist-in-Residence Adriana Kuri Alamillo this Sunday, March 26 from 12 – 3PM!
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Adriana Kuri Alamillo (b. 1993, Mexico City, Mexico) holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts with an emphasis in Art History, Theory and Criticism from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and works as a Gallery Manager for Rhona Hoffman Gallery. Her research and writing practice explores the U.S.-Mexico Border as a physical and conceptual space for creation, the formation of a cross-cultural and cross-border identity, and activism through making. She treads the thin line between art and activism, more often than not, in both her studio and research. Kuri lives and works in Chicago, Illinois.
For her project, Adriana is working on a series of weavings, using homemade backstrap looms that visualize and obfuscate the numbered information received regarding the deaths and disappearances related to the War on Drugs. Visitors to the space are invited to write their own thoughts and protests in regards to the war on drugs and the effects it has had towards human life. Adriana has also installed three working backstrap looms, where she will weave on Sundays and Thursdays throughout the course of the residency. This project encourages audience participation in the shared activity of creation, to reflect and to have conversation, because weaving and textile work is, at the end of the day, a historically communal activity.
An arbitrary line on a map. A division of space, people, practices and ideologies. A thin physical space, and an expansive theoretical ground. A border and its borderlands.
Borders, full of violence and hope, creation and destruction, divisions and amalgamations; are the primary focus of my studio and research/writing practice. The US/Mexico Border, as a permeable place, engenders borderlands in which multiple identities find each other and create new definitions for themselves. I am a part of this border, living and producing within the borderlands it creates. I choose to situate myself on the border and as an active participant of the culture of its borderlands, of that space where the myriad of identity markers within myself meet, transform and convert themselves into a third whole no longer separated but rather informed by the divisions themselves. I am in this process of positioning my work and myself on the line between art and activism.
The mediation of my own identity is entrenched and explored in my practice. The ideas that drive my work are firmly rooted in the identity politics of a cross-cultural, globalized world chock-full of divisions and power structures. My interest lies in exploring myself and those around me as we learn to stake a claim regarding who we are and in turn influence the ways in which we think about race, culture, country, and personal identity. I recognize the existence of borders, physical and theoretical, and am interested in the ways in which artists mediate these spaces as both cultural producers and activists.
My studio production is rooted in weaving, appropriating Mexican cultural craft tradition to break down borders and point out the misconceptions. My research and writing practice on the other hand further analyze the effects and consequences of the fraught contact zones that surround the US/Mexico Border. The production of physical objects is tied intimately to my research, and my avenues of research are inspired by the ideas and problems that come up during the production of studio work. My work deals with and makes comments on the social, political and racial issues I am confronted with on an almost daily basis, by employing strategies of social engagement and activism. Currently I am working on both research that explores the role of the artist on the US/Mexico Border as both a maker and an activist; as well as a series of weavings that visualize and obfuscate the numbered information we receive regarding the deaths and disappearances related to the War on Drugs. I know art has the power to change the way people view the world if only we take the time to ‘say’ something.
SOCIETY! is curated by Jessica Cochran.
ABOUT THE CURATOR
Jessica Cochran is a curator living and working in Chicago. She is currently completing a curatorial fellowship at the Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation and her upcoming exhibitions include Roman Susan (Chicago), McCormick Gallery (Chicago), Center for the Book (New York) and the Hyde Park Art Center (Chicago). After seven years spent in academic galleries, she is now a lecturer at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and the curatorial manager of a growing private collection of contemporary art based in Chicago, Indiana and Palm Springs.