Salt Eaters, Collectors Night at NoMüNoMü Gallery & Raunjiba Design Center
August 20th - September 3 2022
Salt Eaters, Collectors Night 2022 - a group exhibition of DC, Maryland, Virginia and New Jersey contemporary artists.
Salt Eaters features over 40 works by 18 artists. The exhibition divides itself into two themes : the speculative and the earthly. As Ricky Weaver observed, “We have access to worlds that don’t require escape.” What does it feel like to create territories where we are not dismissed? Where our mundane is honored and protected? Where we explore viable futures of wholehearted care and consideration, rather than competition? And should we still wish to imagine alternative realities, what might they be? In Bambara’s The Salt Eaters, faith healer Minnie Ransom asks Velma, “Are you sure, sweetheart, that you want to be well?… Just so’s you’re sure, sweetheart, and ready to be healed, cause wholeness is no trifling matter. A lot of weight when you’re well.”
We are in a transition now. This is not a renaissance nor a rebirth. We’ve been here for centuries. This is a reckoning, and emergence is the strategy. “The wish for communion exists in the body. It is not for strategic reasons alone that gathering together has been at the heart of every movement for social change.. The desire to locate ourselves in community, to make our survival a shared effort, to experience a palpable reverence in our connections with each other and the earth that sustains us, is a realization at the core of being human,” explains Susan Griffin in The Eros of Everyday Life. Salt Eaters, the exhibition, marks this moment by positioning a group of contemporary artists working along the east coast, in a circle with one another.
In Search of Our Mothers' Gardens, We Made Armor at Sediment Gallery
November 1 2019 – December 8 2019
In Search of Our Mothers’ Gardens, We Made Armor, curated by Mahari Kathleen Chabwera, is a sanctuary site for Black womxn to honor our ancestors, indulge in our glory, and digest the complexity of Black symbology through installations, photographs, drawings and sculptures. We are giving gratitude to the women who “literally covered the holes in our walls with sunflowers.” (Alice Walker) We are decolonizing our minds, and tuning ourselves to our inner knowing. Like Audre Lorde before us, we are “less willing to accept powerlessness, self-denial, self-effacement, resignation or those other supplied states of being which are not native to us.” We strive towards creative sustenance as self-affirmation. As a self-soothing salve in Richmond, Virginia; a city whose historically predatory practices have never been appropriately acknowledged or amended. On the 400th year anniversary of the first African peoples’ being forced to this land, we take our healing into our own hands.
In the collection of essays that serve as the namesake for this exhibition, Alice Walker teaches us that our mothers, and grandmothers, and great-grandmothers, “handed on the creative spark, the seed of the flower they themselves never hoped to see.” We’re learning the rhythms of the seasons they knew, and guarding ourselves against the ancient parasites that tried to eviscerate their gardens. We’re taking our protection into our own hands. We’re molding objects and spaces, pulling images and ideas that are non-physical and unrealized from our minds and souls, and making them real. We’re reminding ourselves and our community of who we are. This is our tradition; liberatory magic medicine-making. We give gratitude to the women who planted the seeds of our blooming when the whirlwind blocked both the sun and the rain. This is for us. We are the vindication for immeasurable dreams deferred.
Exhibiting Artists : Ricky Weaver, Taylor Simone, Nastassja Swift, Christa Pratt, Abigail Lucien, & Mahari Chabwera (curator)
In Search of Our Mothers’ Gardens, We Made Armor was curated by Mahari Chabwera and supported in part by her 2019- 2020 award of the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Professional Fellowship.
Evolution of The Sacred Self at Iridian Gallery
January 10 2020 – February 22 2020
Evolution of the Sacred Self is a 2 person project curated by Dr. Lauranett Lee, Lora Beldon, Mahari Chabwera, and Micah Davis Scott. Participating artists were Micah and Mahari.
The exhibition included 9 paintings by Mahari, 1 drawing from her Negromancy series, 2 wall murals and an ofrenda to her ancestors and guides.
he burned our drums so we drummed our bodies; a developing dedication to The Vulva at Corner Office
Cruelty is believing (internalizing) that white
is the only way to describe light.
Cruelty’s not being able to picture a god that’s not white,
not being able to picture a god that’s a woman,
not being able to picture the Spirit as you.
Cruelty is learning at 23 that your Vagina’s not a Vagina.
She’s a Vulva.
“Pussy so good I say my own name during sex.” 1
My own body is a mystery to me.
Cruelty is googling “vulva”
and seeing white
white as norm
white as dominant
white as expectation.
In a society so often sexist and racist -
Irreverent to my existence,
“This shit is for us.” 2
Origin of Descent at Ross Browne Studio
Making Origin was a way for me to teach myself about the objects I was painting, and to support myself while attending my first residency at Vermont Studio Center, spring 2018.