To Muse the Labyrinth – Resident Artist Autumn T. Thomas at PlatteForum
Join us Thursday, October 15th for an opening reception at PlatteForum to celebrate a new immersive installation, To Muse the Labyrinth, created by our current resident artist, Autumn T. Thomas, in collaboration with PlatteForum ArtLab interns. The exhibition themes including Afrofuturism, Black Lives Matter, and reclaiming identity. Registration is required for all attendees and space is limited. Face coverings are required.
All events are free to attend and open to all ages.
Autumn T. Thomas
Itinerant Preacher, 2020
Wenge & Padauk wood, epoxy resin, copper
Itinerant Preacher is, in part, a soulful tribute to Sojourner Truth, credited as the first African American suffragist for her legendary efforts in the fight for abolition and women’s rights. Truth’s epic journey from slavery to the national stage of the women’s movement is embodied in twisting wood and copper, bound and unbound, representing the intersectionality of her fight for freedom as both a woman and an African American.
A virtual view of To Muse the Labyrinth will be available on October 15th.
Thomas is an interdisciplinary artist from Denver and her artistic practice is currently focused on wood sculpture. She creates curved sculptures by placing hundreds of cuts into straight pieces of wood, allowing the material to bend and arch, revoking the endurance required by marginalized communities to endure intersecting forms of bias in their everyday lives. Her sculptures feature minimal design, subverting traditional imagery of Black art. By addressing concepts of systemic oppression in an unexpected form, Thomas’ work has a critical impact on both perception and visual literacy. While in residency at PlatteForum, she is guiding ArtLab high school interns through a series of 3D workshops.
“To Muse the Labyrinth is an exploration of what it means for me to be a Black artist, lost between worlds of anger, resolve and conjecture. During this residency, I will create a labyrinth – a safe space in which to be vulnerable, free from judgement, and awashed in absolution.
The space is open to wander amidst my sculptures and amidst the 3D printed sculptures of the interns, all of which represent this journey. I will allow myself and the ArtLab interns to be lost amidst the global pandemic; lost among the sensationalized, continual murder of Black bodies; lost in the wokeness of a nation bathed in racism, ostensibly trying to wash away the evidence; lost by the personal trauma that we never get to heal from because we “are so strong.”
With the help of Octavia Butler and other Afro-Futurist/Speculative-Fiction authors, I will create for myself the space needed to recover and imagine, to find myself of my own accord, and invite the ArtLab interns to allow that journey for themselves. I invite anyone who is in need of becoming lost, in order to find themself whole, to Muse the Labyrinth with me.” says Thomas.
As part of her residency at PlatteForum, Thomas will also be sitting down for a conversation with therapist and queer youth advocate, Tara Jae at 6 p.m. on Tuesday, September 29th at PlatteForum. Limited tickets available.
The conversation will be recorded and shared online soon after the event. All events related to Autumn T. Thomas residency will adhere to local public health precautions.
For more information, please contact Sarah Slater at sgslater(at)platteforum(dot)org