Ritual of Succession: Llane Alexis, Dana Harel, John Paul Morabito and Yetunde Olagbaju
January 13 - March 27
Opening Reception: Friday, January 10, 6:30-8:30 PM
CULT Aimee Friberg Exhibitions is pleased to present Ritual of Succession. This exhibition opens at CULT’s space in San Francisco’s NOPA neighborhood as a companion to Record of Succession at fused space on 16th Street. In this iteration of the exhibition, artists Llane Alexis, Dana Harel, John Paul Morabito, and Yetunde Olagbaju explore traditions in craft and design as they relate to personal ancestry and cultural mythology. The exhibition asks: What is the impulse behind the desire to reconnect with the past and how does it impact visual culture?
Referencing the history of tapestry and its relationship to religious and devotional iconography, John Paul Morabito reimagines this historical practice by weaving queerness into the tapestry template. By repositioning both the medium and its subject matter, Morabito conflates the sacred to create a new, more inclusive mystical plane. Similarly seeking to create a widening expanse in historical narratives, Yetunde Olagbaju threads multiple mediums in their video work to address the fantastical intersection of time travel and ancestral lineage. Through an examination of nonlinear time, Olagbaju’s recent work is about myth and its transformation into effigy and eventual commodity to illuminate myth legends or folklore surrounding Black people and their labor.
Dana Harel, originally trained as an architect uses the human body and psyche to explore the human relationship to memory and psychological impact on the body. Combining image transfer, drawing, and sculptural work, she alludes to the delicate balance of corporal resonance and restraint. Also using the built environment as a genesis for creation, Llane Alexis’ work is informed by his childhood experience living amid political strife alongside lifelong concerns about textile industry pollution. Through a unique sequence of braiding, weaving, and hand-sewing techniques, he transforms off-cut, unwanted fabric scraps into objects that serve as relics of an industry fraught with social complications, imbuing these discarded objects with new life.
ABOUT JOHN PAUL MORABITO
Positioning handweaving as a transdisciplinary practice, John Paul Morabito engages queerness, ethnicity, and the sacred through the medium of tapestry reimagined in the digital age. They have exhibited internationally including the Zhejiang Art Museum, Hangzhou City, China; Fresh Window Gallery, Brooklyn, NY; Dorksy Gallery Curatorial Projects, Long Island City, NY; Document, Chicago, IL; The Center for Craft, Creativity, and Design, Asheville, NC; and the John Michael Kohler Arts Center, Sheboygan, WI. Public collections include the Musée des maîtres et artisans du Québec, Montreal, QC, CA, and the Textile Resource Center at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. In tandem with individual studio practice, Morabito engages numerous collaborative models. From 2007-2011, they served as a designer and weaver in the New York studio of Suzanne Tick Design. Further, they have collaborated with the photographer Laura Letinsky since 2013. Together they exhibit internationally and have developed collections for Skyline Design and the Renaissance Society. They hold a BFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art and an MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Morabito is Assistant Professor, Adj. of Fiber and Material Studies at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
ABOUT DANA HAREL
Dana Harel was born and raised in Tel Aviv, Israel and currently works in San Francisco. Harel’s drawings explore the mystery of the human psyche and the drama of physical and emotional struggles. Harel has had solo exhibitions at the Laguna Art Museum, Palo Alto Art Center, Gallery Wendi Norris, and Herzliya Museum of Contemporary Art in Herzliya, Israel. Her work has been included in numerous group exhibitions locally including San Francisco Arts Commission, Headlands Center for the Arts, San Jose Institute of Contemporary Art, and Napa Valley Museum. Her work has been reviewed in the New York Times, ArtNews, San Francisco Bay Guardian, CBS, and Art Practical.
ABOUT LLANE ALEXIS
Llane Alexis is a multidisciplinary artist based in San Francisco, CA. Originally from Havana, Cuba, Alexis began his artistic career as a painter in 1997. His unadulterated approach and enterprise with materials are informed by his formative experience living amid political strife. His work has been shown at Sierra Nevada College, FOG Design+Art Fair and Million Fishes Gallery among others. His work is held in private collections across the globe including, the U.S, Argentina, Brazil, Cuba, England, Spain, and Japan.
ABOUT YETUNDE OLAGBAJU
Yetunde Olagbaju is a multidisciplinary artist and curator, currently residing in Oakland, CA. Through their work, they utilize performance and emotional excavation as a through-line for inquiries regarding Black trauma, labor, legacy and processes of healing. They have shown work and projects with Oakland Museum of California, New Image Gallery, Pt. 2 Gallery, Southern Exposure, Guerrero Gallery, SOMArts Cultural Center, The New School, and Art Basel. They have collaborated with institutions such as San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, Facebook HQ, Museum of the African Diaspora, CounterPulse and Yerba Buena Center for the Arts. They are currently co-curator of recurring Black and Brown film night, Opalescent and are pursuing an MFA at Mills College. They are also Creative and Artistic Director of There Is No Time -- a creative production organization focusing on supporting emerging Black & Brown artists.