Afrofuturism is focus of Wright Museum exhibit

The Wright Museum of Art announces exhibit season.

Beloit College has a vibrant art and culture community.

The Wright Museum of Art

Transfiguration: A Black Speculative Vision of Freedom

North Gallery

Aug. 30—Nov. 4, 2022

Gallery talk with curator Julian Chambliss, Sept. 22, 4 p.m. Wright Atrium

Since the debut of Marvel’s Black Panther (2018), the focus on Afrofuturism in the United States has skyrocketed. This focus, however, fails to fully understand the scope, complexity, and significance of Afrofuturism. Transfiguration highlights how visual narrative at the heart of Afrofuturist practice is part of a longer Black speculative tradition. Black speculative thought, with significant roots in nineteenth-century literature, works against anti-Blackness and imagines a space devoid of colonial frameworks and systemic racism.

Transfiguration is curated by Julian Chambliss, Ph.D., Professor of English, Michigan State University.

The exhibition is part of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Exhibition Series, which addresses issues of race, diversity, social justice, civil rights, and humanity to serve as a catalyst for dialogue and to enrich our community with new perspectives. This exhibit is co-sponsored by the Department of English and Critical Identity Studies.

What Lets What Pass

South Gallery
Sept. 13—Nov. 11, 2022

Artist talk, Kyle Herrera, Oct. 7, 2 p.m., South Gallery

What Lets What Pass is a large-scale video/audio work that explores emotional trauma. Using abstraction and digital manipulation, it maps a trajectory from innocence to trauma, and from survivor hood to mindful recovery, across a cycle of short films.

Kyle Herrera is an artist and educator who works with video, sound, and interactive installation. He was born and raised in rural Southern California, where his strict religious upbringing eventually gave way to DIY subcultures and the arts. Together with recent personal losses, these experiences inform themes of community, trauma, and healing in his work. Herrera seeks to empower viewers by conjuring states of meditation, uplift, or catharsis, using technological means to affirm viewers’ interconnectedness and sense of self.

American Landscapes: Early Representations and Contemporary Reclamations

North Gallery
Nov. 15, 2022—March 24, 2023

This exhibition uses works from the permanent collection to examine our histories through landscape paintings.

Most “American landscapes” in museum collections depict idyllic scenes of ‘new’ land painted by European men—this catalog and exhibition will give an alternative narrative about American landscapes and highlight the stories that have not been told at our museum.

Critiquing the Classical

South Gallery
Dec. 7, 2022—March 24, 2023

The exhibition brings into the foreground the elements of the “Classical” (and its implied whiteness) that function as ornament in the campus’ built environment (this includes structural elements such as columns, but also architectural choices about building layout and decorative details like wall art, trims and mouldings, textiles, and furniture).

This exhibit will make use of other objects aside from the plaster cast collection. (This may include pursuing the acquisition of prints, photos, and/or objects that highlight the non-Greco-Roman cultures and societies of the ancient Mediterranean, and/or the cultures of the ancient Near East.) I do hope, however, that this exhibit can also play a role in drawing viewers’ attention also to the plaster casts, to explore whether they, too, in their placement and distribution around the halls of the Wright, are comparable to the ubiquitous-yet-background ornament of “the Classical” in the physical spaces of campus.

See for yourself

Wright Museum of Art
Beloit College
700 College St.
Beloit, WI 53511

Gallery Hours:
Tuesday–Saturday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Appointments can be made outside of museum hours by contacting Christa Story,

August 29, 2022

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