David Castillo Gallery, Miami, FL.
December 1, 2015 – January 31, 2016
David Castillo Gallery is proud to present two solo exhibitions- Sanford Biggers: Matter and Xaviera Simmons: Index Seven. The two shows work across sculpture and photography.
Sanford Biggers’ Matter collaborates with the cultural legacy of Fat Albert & The Cosby Kids (1972-84), an animated series created, produced, and hosted by Bill Cosby. Laocoon (Fat Albert) occupies the floor of David Castillo Gallery. The work is rendered in vinyl and lays partially deflated on his generous belly, arms at his sides, rump in the air, and head turned with one ear pressed to the earth. Like Laocoon’s multiple and often contradictory stories from classical literature, the present work speaks to death, character assassination, and a general loss in trust.
Another formidable artwork in Matter constitutes a mounted 10-foot quilt inscribed with the word “MATTER.” The quilt posits a direct connection to the Black Lives Matter movement. The quilt— itself sewn from several antique quilts that signal the role this medium played in antebellum folk art and in Underground Railroad communication networks— lends trans-historical perspective to #blacklivesmatter and the ways in which racism, nationalism, and capitalism have failed that mattering. The materiality of the quilt emphasizes the matter in mattering. Biggers reminds the viewer how terribly powerful it is to have a body, be embodied, be subjected to form. These works also remind us how terribly dangerous that subject-hood and subjectivity are, so intimate and intimately produced by bodies physical, historical, geographical, cultural, semiotic.