Container #4, 2020

I’m here to entertain you, but only during my shift

Joiri Minaya

Curated by Corrine Y. Gordon

Exhibition Dates: August 25 – September 30, 2020

Baxter St at CCNY is pleased to present a solo exhibition of work by Joiri Minaya, organized by curator Corrine Y. Gordon.

Joiri Minaya sees her work as a reassertion of self, in which she uses her cultural background as a base to explore and reconcile her experiences of growing up in the Dominican Republic and living and navigating the United States. I’m here to entertain you, but only during my shift examines the construction of the female subject in relation to landscape, looking particularly at “tropical” environments. The exhibition features new works from her ongoing Containers series initiated in 2015, where Minaya takes photographs of women wearing custom head-to-toe printed bodysuits that mimic tropical flora and poses them in seemingly natural environments that have been altered by man. The original series stemmed from a Google search of “Dominican Women,” where Minaya found specific poses repeated throughout her findings and appropriated these poses through the structure of the bodysuits, forcing the performer to adopt the pose. By doing this, Minaya looks to the parallels drawn between nature and femininity, as both have been imagined and represented throughout history as idealized, tamed, conquered, and exoticized entities. 

The title I’m here to entertain you, but only during my shift aims to establish a relationship between the viewer and the work, drawing attention to the performative nature of her subjects and the audience’s position as an active observer. It is also a line pulled from one of the original scripts Minaya wrote when she started to experiment with the series beyond photography. She converted the images into a performance, incorporating voice recordings and written text that were strategically paired to the location and bodysuits. As the series continues to be reimagined through new mediums, this exhibition will be the first to present collage alongside her continued photographs, video, and text.  

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THE BIG FLAT NOW

Marco Scozzaro

Curated by Flyweight Projects

Exhibition Dates: August 25 – September 30, 2020

Baxter St at CCNY in partnership with Flyweight Projects proudly presents THE BIG FLAT NOW featuring works by former 2016 Workspace Resident Marco Scozzaro. This exhibition will be open in the window of the Project Space at 128 Baxter St.

Marco Scozzaro’s THE BIG FLAT NOW explores the distinctions between various media and our expectations thereof. He collects the familiar and generic imagery of our contemporary visual landscape: soft-lined millennial aesthetics, sentimental kitsch, conventional stock images and commercial signage. By digitally layering and collaging these simpler images, he creates original, more complex photographs. He renders some areas abstract, reducing them to pure texture and colorful patterns, while leaving others partially recognizable.  The new image is then — incredibly, surprisingly — made into carpeting, a flag, a video, or a sculpture.  Scozzaro emphasizes that each medium controls both the meaning and the shared experience of the  content. He transforms the visual noise of familiar tropes and illustrates that, without reconfiguring, little meaning can be gleaned from this cultural landscape; and ultimately the modes with which we are framing our lives during this fraught moment in human history are suspect and should be reconsidered.   

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