|Phantom Dynasty (2014) by Daphne Arthur|
By Mark Jenkins July 8 at 2:10 PM
Four artists are included in the politically charged “Hear/Here,” but only two of them have work on the Honfleur Gallery’s walls. The others’ contributions are in the air, via an audio collage of ideological gibes and poetical rejoinders.
Representing city life and conflict, New York’s Daphne Arthur combines graphic-novel-style renderings of people with such items as broken glass, paint spatters and a clump of rope. Omolara Williams McCallister’s paintings on cloth include an urban street scene, but much of the D.C. artist’s work is engagingly dreamlike. Snowflakes and bicycles float in midair over not-so-mean streets.
In one Arthur painting, a man stands before a scrum of camera-wielding reporters. The mass media gets equally skeptical treatment in the audio piece: Two loudspeakers emit attacks on President Obama and the Black Lives Matter movement — many of them from political TV talk shows — while the third offers Fire Angelou’s vehement verse. Both the poet and the sound designer Andrew Paul Keiper are from Baltimore, and that city’s turmoil informs the point-counterpoint. But “Hear/Here” curator Jarvis DuBois clearly intends that visitors look beyond West Baltimore — and Southeast D.C.
Hear/Here On view through July 16 at Honfleur Gallery, 1241 Good Hope Rd. SE. 202-365-8392. honfleurgallery.com.
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