Ifé Franklin’s Indigo Project provides a historical, artistic, and cultural context to the important cultural aspects of the life of the enslaved and the artistic production of Adire textile making. Components of her Indigo Project, sculptures, small installations, textiles and 2d works, will transform the Spoke Gallery. During the course of the exhibition, the creation of a wooden structure resembling a slave cabin will occur. The structure will be completely covered inside and outside with Aso Adire (indigo textile) that was produced by a group of volunteers that the artist taught the traditional techniques of Adire from the Yoruba culture of Nigeria, West Africa. Medicine Wheel Production’s Spoke Gallery is the first site it to show one of the cabins of this project.
For Ifé Franklin, this is a project that is a living testament honoring those who lived and died producing these two materials she works with closely- plantation grown cotton and indigo. She states, “I want to share this art with people that are interested in the history of enslavement and the collective healing that needs to take place to bring forth remembrance and reconciliation. Without forgetting the unspeakable violence and dehumanization the system of slavery perpetrated, I also want to look at their lives as larger than the tragic ugliness of their situation. I want us to see them as more than just slaves. I know that our ancestors shared a great love with one another in the ways that they could, for as long as time would allow, since they never knew just how much time they had with family members and friends. The Indigo Project challenges us to dare envision an experience of slavery where beauty and love were possible. Our ancestors simply would not have survived if they also had not loved and created beauty even in the most inhumane conditions. Theirs is the story of America, of Americans, a nation and its people.”
This exhibition will run until November 22nd and can be viewed at Medicine Wheel Productions Spoke Gallery 2nd floor South Boston MA 02127 www.mwponline.org (617) 268-6700 Gallery hours. Wednesday-Friday 12-5pm Saturday by appt. only.