homeplace: Larry Achiampong, Patty Chang, Shezad Dawood, Rhea Dillon, DeSe Escobar, Madelynn Green, Nadya Isabella, Athena Papadopoulos, Mohammed Sami, and Urara Tsuchiya at V.O Curations
homeplace is an exhibition of work by ten artists that rereads the concept of private domesticity as both theory and philosophy. Curated by Kate Wong, the show takes its title from a 1996 essay by bell hooks in which the notion of ‘homeplace’ is understood as the making of a physical as well as a psychic community of resistance. If to resist means to oppose being invaded or destroyed by healing oneself , 2 then homeplace is the creation of a restorative space where those who have been dehumanised outside in the public world can regain ontological wholeness. Emerging through the conscious and heroic labour of black women within the colonised world of white supremacy, and no mater how fragile and tenuous it is, homeplace is vital to liberation struggle. To create and to sustain a place in which black people can affirm themselves despite oppressive socio-political conditions is not only an act of care, but a radically subversive political gesture.
Employing the concept of homeplace as a framework through which to consider the disruptive potentials of domesticity, this exhibition untethers the lexicon of the home from its traditionally passive and feminised position. Tenderness and vulnerability become a form of resistance, and instances of slowness and softness become a mode of refusal. In addition to the works by black women and women of colour in the show, homeplace seeks to reveal the often hidden registers of private domestic life across a multiplicity of experiences. Where they overlap, these narratives form the basis for a shared political and cultural imaginary.