Los Angeles, November 10, 2020
stephanie mei huang reviews the second annual iteration of Womxn in Windows which includes Everlane Moraes' Aurora (2018), Ja'Tovia Gary's An Ecstatic Experience (2015) and The Prophetess (2018) by Sylvie Weber:
"A window, then—designed to allow for vision without touch—initially seems to be a counterintuitive display for An Ecstatic Experience. Yet, in the last minute of Gary’s film, as a choir performs “The Battle Hymn of the Republic” intercuts with footage from the 2014/15 riots in Ferguson and Baltimore, police officers carry transparent shields (not unlike windows) and squad car windows shatter. Watching glass break behind unbroken glass reminds me that windows carry the tactile precarity of being shattered—a precarity similar to that which characterized the unrest in the wake of George Floyd’s murder, in which certain strata of society showed they valued the storefront and commodity over Black life. The hymn continues as Gary’s touch on the celluloid once again speckles the choir members in magenta amoebic animations; I am reminded that touch persists regardless of the devices that refract it. Gary’s film pushes beyond Womxn in Windows’ initiative of unraveling objecthood and subverting gendered spectatorship. She also punctures the preventative membrane of the window by evoking the sensorial perception of touch."
Read the full review at Contemporary Art Review LA.
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