Isabelle Lutterodt, Sheila Pinkel, Alex Donis, Abdelali Dahrouch
November 8 – December 11, 2004
Reception, Thursday, November 11, 7-9pm

Cal Poly Pomona, W. Keith & Janet Kellogg University Art Gallery
3801 W. Temple Ave., Pomona 91768
Contact:  Patrick Merrill, Director
(909) 869-4301, fax (909) 869-4939
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Gallery hours, Tuesday – Friday, 11am-4pm; Saturday, 12-4pm

The Kellogg University Art Gallery at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona will present new works by Isabelle Lutterodt, Sheila Pinkel, Alex Donis, Abdelali Dahrouch. The exhibit will run from Nov. 8, through Dec. 11, 2004. The gallery is located at 3801 W. Temple Ave., Cal Poly Pomona, Pomona, Ca.91768. Gallery hours are Tues. through Fri. 11:00 - 4:00, and Sat. 12:00 - 4:00. Parking is $4. A reception for the artists will be held on Nov. 11 from 7:00-9:00 PM. The reception and party is open and free to the public.

The core idea for Nexus centers around hierarchy. What I call "dominisms", e.g. race, age, sex, gender, class are structured by hierarchy. I believe the primary dynamic in our culture is domination and submission. I don't think progress is possible unless the interdependence of everyone and everything in our culture is not only acknowledged but that strategies are developed that employ that interdependence to resist the 'dominisms' of our culture. When asked by Jerry Quickley of KPFK, a Pacifica radio station, what did she see as the current state of Feminism, bell hooks proposed the idea of "Visionary Feminism." She saw this as an inter-connection of class, race, sex, gender etc. in its opposition to the primary dynamic of patriarchy.

I think the ideas essential to ecology are pertinent here. All of these issues are inter related. They are interdependent not only to each other but to the power structures they are opposed to. The medium this dynamic moves in are all the homogenous and differential arenas of human nature and culture. They are acted out in all our institutions - economic, judicial, religious.
I want Nexus to be defined by artists that employ these ideas of inter-dependence. Obviously not in every piece, but over the whole of their work the interconnectedness of race, gender, sex class are manifest.

I invited the four artists in this exhibit Isabelle Lutterodt, Sheila Pinkel, Alex Donis, Abdelali Dahrouch because each deal with some aspect of the intersection of race, class, gender, sex, etc.

close to home: periphery/location
Isabele Lutterodt was born in England and uses her unusual genealogy (her father is from Ghana, her mother is British) to explore identity, fantasy and memory through created or found photographs and texts. In exploring her family's history, issues of race, class and colonialism become immediate. Isabelle will travel to Ghana to create images of the landscape and through a layering of the real and the metaphorical explore the difference/sameness in the relationship to the African landscape of that of her white grandmother and herself.

Prison Industrial Complex
Shelia Pinkel has been making art with political themes since the 60's. In this exhibit Shelia directs her practice at the cancerous growth of the prison system especially here in California. She speaks to the high rate of incarceration of people of color. She addresses the Prison Industrial Authority. PIA is a system in which prisoners receive far less than minimum wage to manufacture a spectrum of things. This system is of special interest to labor unions which are concerned with workers rights and unfair labor competition.

Alex Donis who describes himself as a queer artist and a feminist is also Hispanic. Previously Alex has dealt with race and homophobia in his highly controversial paintings that have the LAPD and gangs dancing together. In Nexus he uses art history to pay tribute to contemporary art-world woman who have influenced and inspired him. By cutting out the extraneous background and focusing on the iconic pose and by substituting his woman of inspiration for the male and white subjects of history he presents a critique of race, gender and class that is witty and very humorous.

The Liquid Cemetery
Abdelali Dahrouch is a conceptual media artist who lives in Los Angeles, and works between the U.S., France, and Morocco. Born in Tangier, and raised between Morocco and France, Dahrouch emigrated to the U.S. in 1984 to pursue multimedia art as a vehicle to address the political and social issues in which he was immersed as an activist and writer. His work engages transnational migration and U.S./European imperialism largely in relation to the Middle East and North Africa. The video installation created specifically for this exhibition "The Liquid Cemetery" addresses Europe's methods for controlling the flow of immigrant labor from the south and the tragic loss of life in the Strait of Gibraltar. The work echoes the same conditions of America's southern border and reveals the global interconnectedness of these issues.

--Patrick Merrill

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