Artist Talk: Kapawani Kiwanga: The sum and its parts

Saturday, Jan 21, 2017 2 pm – 12 am

Exhibition on view January 20-March 12

Logan Center Exhibitions will present a selection of newly commissioned work by Kapwani Kiwanga in her first solo exhibition in the United States: Kapwani Kiwanga: The sum and its parts. The exhibition features a site-specific installation, video, and prints that draw on the artist’s research into the design of institutional spaces, including materials found in the University of Chicago’s Special Collections Library.
Across the elements of Kapwani Kiwanga: The sum and its parts, Kiwanga deconstructs the physical and psychological qualities of different built environments including schools, prisons, hospitals, and mental health facilities. In the main gallery, Kiwanga brings together architectural elements from historical and contemporary versions of these spaces including wall sections, lighting fixtures, and surface treatments creating a spatial collage that escapes the sum of its fragments. For these works, Kiwanga has drawn from her extensive research into disciplinary architectures throughout time, extracting specific details from the designs of late 19th century workhouses and reformatory schools in Britain and France respectively.
“Kiwanga’s installation transforms the Logan Center Gallery into an experiential space that is guided by the artist’s astute architectural interventions,” said Yesomi Umolu, Exhibitions Curator at the Reva and David Logan Center, and curator of the exhibition, “With this, Kiwanga underscores the built environment’s function as a mechanism for regulating human behavior. This allows visitors to consider the mental and physical effects of the various spaces that they occupy daily.”