Catherine Nueva España

Tavares Strachan at the Frye Art Museum (2018)

Tavares Strachan. Installation view of A Children’s History of Invisibility, 2017. Pigment, collage, vinyl, on matte Moab paper, mounted on Sintra, encased in acrylic. Photo: Mark Woods

In 1995, a six-year-old boy named Gedhun Choekyi Nyima was disappeared into Chinese custody after the Dalai Lama recognized him as the true reincarnation of the Panchen Lama. In his place, the Chinese government recognized Gyaltsen Norbu as the Panchen Lama, to the protests of many Tibetans. Setting aside questions of legitimacy and politics, this moment in history, for Tavares Strachan, is also a moment to consider the nature of truth. Who gets to decide what is true? Is the truth objective or subjective? Strachan, who was born and raised in the Bahamas and received his formal artistic education in the United States, is aware that the colonial history of the Bahamas and his Western education have determined much of what he knows. Unsatisfied with what the traditional Western canon has documented as true and important, Strachan does his own extensive research into those histories. In doing so, he demonstrates the ways in which the “official” version of a historical moment can obscure lesser-known stories and histories—which, subsequently, have become the subjects of his multimedia works.

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This entry was posted on 2018/03/01 by in Writing and tagged , , , , , .

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