APR 12th 7PM ET / 4PM PT
Considering Home | Wangari Mathenge
Wangari Mathenge's paintings draw from the powerful silence of the artist's interior life. Often depicting domestic environments, her scenes are staged amid the comforts of home, with richly patterned East African textiles and luxurious furnishings suggesting the grandeur of nineteenth-century Orientalist paintings, which contributed towards the exoticization of the 'other'. However, the figures in Mathenge's works, loosely based on family photographs, embody African diaspora experiences of living between diverse cultural worlds.
Mindful of European classical painting traditions, in which female bodies have often been objectified by the male gaze, Mathenge's canvases centre women in spaces of quiet self-reflection and introspection. As the viewer becomes drawn into a world of saturated color and sumptuous detail, the paintings reveal themselves to be imagined worlds in which the subjects occupy realities of their own making.
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