Letter from the Director: Year in Review

December 19, 2017

Dear Gallery 102 Supporters,

It has been quite a year! 2017 has been full of exciting exhibitions and new programming. We want to highlight and remember the key people who made this year possible!

During the Spring semester we hosted the Tea Project, an exhibition curated by Chicago-based duo Aaron Hughes and Amber Ginsburg. The exhibition highlighted the human rights violations occurring at Guantanamo Bay. On view were never before seen works by detainees Ghaleb Al-Bihani and Djamel Ameziane. It was an incredibly powerful exhibition, and we were so honored that our space could serve as host. 

In February, in conjunction with our guest curator Dr. Imani Cheers, we mounted Songs of My People: 25 Years Later. The exhibition was originally hung in 1992 at the Corcoran Gallery of Art. In addition to the show, we were elated to have hosted a panel discussion with Dr. Cheers, her father D. Michael Cheers (one of the original curators and editors of the 1992 exhibition), Dr. Deborah Willis, Dr. Rhea Combs, and Reggie Cunningham.

During the Spring semester we also presented A LUTA CONTINUA, curated by Zinhle Essamuah, Safe Space, curated by our previous co-chair Leighah Scully, and the Annual Awards Show, juried by Larry Cook (MFA '13).

Over the summer, we inaugurated our Summer Solo Shows Series. Our first three artists included photographer Paolo Morales, painter Regina Miele, and painter and Corcoran alum Asha Elana Casey. The success of the series was illustrated by the reviews we received from both the Washington Post and Bmore Art. Look out in the coming months for the announcement of our 2018 Summer Solo Series artists.

This Fall, Gallery 102 exhibited two powerful shows: Bearing Witness: Visualizing Modern Slavery and Inalienable Truths. Bearing Witness touched upon issues of human trafficking and modern slavery, and played a small part in the larger ACTION DC! campaign put together by ArtWorks for Freedom. We hosted a panel that included Maurice Middleburg of Free the Slaves, Filipina street and documentary photographer Xyza Cruz Bacani, and NYC-based conceptual artist Molly Gochman. Inalienable Truths, curated by our very own MFA student Laylaa Randera, brought together artists from all over the United States to question the ethics of our immigration system. We hosted an evening of performance that featured DMV-based artists Tsedaye Makonnen and Helina Metaferia. 

We are so excited to gear up for the Spring 2018 semester. Look out for more information on our exhibition schedule coming out in the new year.

I'd like to take this time to thank some people for their contributions to the success of Gallery 102 this year. To all of the guest curators and collaborators, both I and the committee are so thankful for your insight and vision. To all of the artists who have exhibited with us this year, we are so proud to have been able to show your work and share it with the public. To the Student Exhibitions Committee, all 18 of you, you all are amazing and fearless and inspire me. None of this could have been possible without your imagination and commitment to the space. Thank you to the Corcoran School of the Arts & Design and to GW. Lastly, thank you to all of our supporters.

If you'd like to make your voice heard and learn how to get involved in any of the issues we've touched upon this year, follow the links below:
Center for Constitutional Rights
Black Lives Matter
30 Actions 30 Days to Confront Human Trafficking
Free the Slaves
Fight For Our Dream
United We Dream

Have a safe and happy holidays!
Warmest regards,
Andy Johnson, Gallery Director

Gallery 102
Smith Hall of Art
The Corcoran School of the Arts & Design
801 22nd St NW
Washington DC 20052

Hours: Mon-Fri 9-5

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