Tuesday, February 2, 2016
I visited the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art on Saturday to see an exhibit that had just opened. I missed the opening night reception on Friday evening because of another commitment so I headed over first thing on Saturday to check it out.
The show is called Betye Saar: Still Tickin' so it seems appropriate to show you this piece from the show first. The name of the show could have several meanings but, the one that resonated with me is the fact that Ms. Saar is 89 years old and still creating art. Or as she puts it; "still spinning on my ninetieth revolution around the sun."
Ms. Saar has been creating artworks since 1960 reflecting on African-American identity, spirituality and how different cultures are interconnected.
The show was divided into three themes: nostalgia and memory; mysticism and ritual; and political and racial. The above piece has a definite mystical theme with the table and chairs surrounded by natural elements and various Tarot cards. One of the docents told me that the natural materials are gathered in whatever city the exhibit is taking place. Members of staff helped to collect the tumbleweeds and branches for this display.
This piece was called "Loss of Innocence" with that christening dress hanging over a child's chair with a picture of a baby on it.
Upon closer look at the christening dress, you will find words that some people have used to describe a young African-American child. It's easy to see that this piece falls into the political and racial theme.
This last photo is of a room full of pieces that that were all created with a color theme of red. The bright red room really pulled me in and made me want to stay for a while.
It was an interesting and powerful show that I enjoyed very much.