Lavendra: E. Jane

 

LAVENDRA

E. Jane

March 25th - May 7th, 2017

Opening Reception:
Saturday, March 25th, 6-10 pm

American Medium is pleased to present Lavendra, E. Jane's first solo exhibition with the gallery. Lavendra functions as a proposition; it is an attempt to make a new space, a space inconceivable outside of science fiction. Lavendra is an attempt to claim a space and orient it towards the Black woman. At the center of Lavendra is the figure of the Black diva – from 90s R&B music videos (specifically from 1993-1999). In a series of sculptural collages, these women, bathed in purple light, surround the whisper of monitors, welcoming you to Lavendra.

Lavendra is a brown dwarf. Like planets, brown dwarfs lack the mass to ignite and produce starlight. Like stars, they are often found alone in space. You are on its surface. Mhysa is saving the brown dwarf by bringing the magic of the Black diva to it. With the help of Mhysa, the Black diva’s voice acts as an audio technology that both stabilizes the surface for humans and helps the brown dwarf become more of a planet, though still alone, without a parent body to orbit.

Colorism determines who is allowed to be praised, acknowledged, or exist in the “urban” or non “urban” popular imaginary. The belief in the inferiority of the Black woman leads to real violence. The stereotypes against the Black woman make her body a target. The stress placed upon the Black woman limits the space for imagining. Within Lavendra, an alternative is articulated. The articulation of this is the first step towards transformation.


THIS IS A LOVE BASED PROJECT THAT UTILIZES RESEARCH + CRITICAL THOUGHT.

IT IS FREE OF JUDGMENT OF THE FOLK.

THE FOLK ARE JUDGED ENOUGH.

BLACK WOMEN ARE JUDGED ENOUGH.

THIS WORK LOVES BLACK WOMEN REGARDLESS.


E. Jane (@E_SCRAAATCH) is a Black woman, artist and sound designer. Their work is a critical inquiry surrounding softness, safety, futurity, cyberspace and how subjugated bodies navigate media/the media. Their interdisciplinary practice incorporates digital images, video, performance, sound-based and installation works.

A central facet of Jane’s practice lies in their music output as Mhysa, an underground popstar for the cyber resistance. She released the Hivemind EP on NON in early 2016 and was recently listed in Artforum’s “Best of 2016: Music”. Mhysa is currently writing her debut album, Fantasii.

Born in Bethesda, Maryland in 1990 and currently based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, E. Jane received their MFA from the University of Pennsylvania in 2016 and a BA in Art History with minors in English and Philosophy from Marymount Manhattan College in New York in 2012.


They have shown work at The Kitchen, MoCADA and MoMA PS1 (as one half of sound duo SCRAAATCH), Various Small Fires (Los Angeles), Little Berlin (Philadelphia), Pelican Bomb (New Orleans), Visual Arts Center (Austin), Gstaad, Switzerland, Edel Assanti and IMT Gallery (London), Bar Babette (Berlin), and all over the internet. In 2015, E. wrote the NOPE manifesto which has recently been published by the Brooklyn-based digital publishers, Codette.

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