Tyler Williams – “In the Colophony, a Sticky Mess”

Tyler Williams – “In the Colophony, a Sticky Mess”

Open Door Gallery Boston - March 18 through June 3, 2019

Banner reading "1 year. 4 artists. 4 shows. March 2019 - March 2020. Prisms: Perspectives on hidden disability"

Artist's Reception Friday May 3, 2019 5-6pm. Photography Workshop 6-7pm.

Artist Statement:
In current times, where black bodies are extremely visible due to a necessary movement for self-defense, who is given the space to be heard has become more censored.  With a media creating lovable and digestible Lupita Nyong'os, Oprah Winfreys, Jay-Zs, and Obamas the percentage of "successful blacks" (or as W.E.B. DuBois theories as the Talented Tenth) is dwarfed by the black proletariat, who is treated as an embarrassing rash.  This idea of success within black culture essentially means being white adjacent, and dispelling major characteristics of black culture.  What I do not want to do is entertain the concept of reinforcing racist stereotypes, and I don't want to praise shows like Blackish, Empire, and the Cosby Show's rags to riches rhetoric as a #BlackExcellence project.

I intend on offering black folk their autonomous freedom to represent themselves, while hopefully sowing inquisitive thoughts on why they aren't granted that right.  This will be done in documentation format, where I will collaborate with Black Americans from low-income hoods through photography and performance.

Tyler Cala Williams, on his practice:
I desire to create a space for Blacks with multiple identities to choose for themselves how they want to be heard, represented, and prideful of; as I myself finds a place within my work to do the same.  Using this route as a tool to propel and create discourse; outside of the forces that obstruct representation and autonomous freedom of the black body.

The work I produce teeters between performance and photography.  I use photography to document the performances and at times the performance is dependent on photography to be activated.

Black and white photo of person wearing a hoodie walking past another person looking out at them from behind a black curtain
Black and white photo of a middle aged black male lifting his right hand. Three young girls stand in front of him.

Other Exhibits in the VSA MA Series "Prisms: Perspectives on Hidden Disability"

Dreams and Tings
Arielle Gray
June 18 - September 12, 2019

Brains are cool (even when they hurt)
Bethany Murray
September 17 - December 12, 2019

Hymn to the Body
Rachel Bird
December 17, 2019 - March 12, 2020

Prisms: Perspectives on Hidden Disability offers artistic explorations of four artists' experiences with disability that are not initially visible to others, including learning and physical disabilities, chronic pain, and mental illness. By considering disability with the varied perspectives shared by the exhibiting artists, a spectrum of nuanced, gorgeous, and human experiences unfolds. In resonance with James Baldwin's declaration that "The role of the artist is exactly the same as the role of the lover. If I love you, I have to make you conscious of the things you don't see.", it is with love that we share this work, invite necessary dialogue, and collectively envision a future that is more just for all.