JAMES MONTFORD | Black Indians in Space: The Constellation

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE > April 29, 2014

JAMES MONTFORD
Black Indians in Space: The Constellation

JAMES MONTFORD | Black Indians in Space: The Constellation

June 5 – July 13, 2014

Opening Reception:
Saturday, June 7, 6PM – 9PM

Closing Reception:
Saturday, July 12, 6PM – 9PM

Gallery Hours:
Thursday + Friday, 3PM – 8PM
Saturday + Sunday, 12PM – 5PM
Other Days by Appointment

Yellow Peril Gallery is pleased to present “Black Indians in Space: The Constellation,” an exhibition of mixed-media collages exploring African American and Native American stereotypes and identity by James Montford, opening Thursday, June 5, 2014. The opening reception is Saturday, June 7 from 6PM – 9PM.

“My creative process and studio practice involve scholarly exploration conducted in tandem with the development of an aesthetic that seeks to convey a social construct. I am focused on creating an art that considers societal justice,” states Montford. “I do not see the work as political, but as being more closely related to ‘a conversation’ in its broadest and most inclusive context.”

Montford’s art is known for its provocative use of racial slurs and stereotypes in relation to blacks, whites, and Native Americans. His interpretations of the concept of Holocaust open up the discursive space for his audience to think in terms of extermination. For example, in one gallery performance he imitated a lynching, in 1995 he protested the absence of artists of color in a Hartford, Connecticut exhibit by scrawling “No Coons Here” on the gallery wall, and in 2003 he posed as a live cigar store Indian in front of a statue of Abe Lincoln in Buffalo, New York.

According to Montford, his ongoing project is to research what is “Black Indian.” The work created from that exploration serves as the basis for an extended dialogue. “The work is part of a global dialogue,” he explains, “which seeks to question the canon by engaging in the deconstruction of perceived cultural constructs and by examining oppression.”

“There is an effectively ambiguous nature to the work that focuses the discussion on subjugation while still being interested in resolving formal issues,” says Montford. “I am acutely interested in and fascinated by the issues raised by the work in addressing false societal constructs – racism as it affects community and environments- and the persuasiveness of myth. My practice is focused on the deconstruction of stereotyped images as they relate to people of color in the global sense.”

The opening reception for “Black Indians in Space: The Constellation” is Saturday, June 7, from 6PM – 9PM. The exhibition will be on display from Thursday, June 5 until Sunday, July 13, 2014. The closing reception is Saturday, July 12, from 6PM – 9PM. This is Montford’s first solo exhibition at Yellow Peril Gallery.

About James Montford
JAMES MONTFORD is a multi-media artist, whose work ranges from photography and collage to performance art. He works between his studios in Providence, Rhode Island and Boston, Massachusetts. For over forty years, his career has allowed him to exhibit his work nationally, curate exhibitions and educate a variety of students crossing disciplines and media. Graduating with Honors in Fine Arts at Brandeis University, he was awarded the Rosland W. Levine Award for outstanding Achievement in Fine Arts and served on the Advisory Committee to the Dean of the College. He went on to receive his MA in Art and Education at Columbia University and MFA at the Hoffberger School of Painting, Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore. Montford’s numerous residencies include several Yaddo Residency Fellowships in Saratoga Springs, NY, the Art Matters Inc. NYC Individual Artist Fellowship and a VT Studio Residency Grant. He has pursued opportunities to study and work under great artists such as painter Robert Colescott, architect Paolo Soleri, painter Grace Hartigan and painter Joseph Stefanelli. Montford received funding from the National Endowment for the Arts Individual Artist Fellowship and was twice awarded the Pollock Krasner Foundation Grant to Support Independent Work. In 2005, Montford was appointed Director of the Edward M. Bannister Gallery at Rhode Island College, where he is a Professor in the Art Department, and curates thought-provoking exhibitions by both regional and national artists.

About Yellow Peril Gallery
Founded in 2011, YELLOW PERIL GALLERY is a contemporary art gallery located at The Plant, a historic mill complex in the Olneyville neighborhood of Providence, Rhode Island. The Gallery fosters modern art critiques on popular culture and society from emerging, mid-career and established artists in the United States and abroad. Our inventory comprises of works of art from critically-acclaimed artists who have been featured in museum exhibitions, participated in top tier art fairs and acquired by private collectors worldwide. Artists that we represent share our commitment to social responsibility, and 10% from the sale of all artwork is donated to a charitable organization of the Artists’ choice. For more info about future exhibitions, visit www.yellowperilgallery.com.

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If you’d like more information about this press release, or to schedule an interview with JAMES MONTFORD, please contact Vanphouthon Souvannasane at +1 917 655 1497 or via e-mail at van@yellowperilgallery.com.