Allana Clarke. Relative Semblance

9 Nov 2019 – 21 Dec 2019

Regular hours

12:00 – 18:00
12:00 – 18:00
12:00 – 18:00

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On Nov. 9, 2019, The Women’s Darkroom + Gallery will open “Relative Semblance,” an exhibition of five new “sculptural poems” by Allana Clarke.


For her first solo show with The Women’s Darkroom + Gallery, Clarke considers what is inherited, what is given, what is passed down, and the cultural distilled and held within the individual. One of the sculptural poems on view reads “Meh muddah teach me to hate blackness in myself and in others.” In her essay for the exhibition catalog, Aruna D’Souza astutely deconstructs this statement: “Clarke casts cocoa butter in letter-shaped molds. She creates poetry with these letters, yet the words belie the soothing quality of the material in which they are formed ... a pale yellow array of block-style text installed on a chocolate brown wall. The [aforementioned] statement is painful but perhaps not shocking to anyone living in a body that is marked in ways that precede her existence in the world—ways that in the West have always connoted the things one should not be. Blackness and femaleness preexist the self—they are categories that people enter into when they emerge into the world.” Clarke takes us on an intimate and often uncomfortable recollection of ephemeralities associated with her being. Speaking directly to the overlapping and intersectional experiences of women of color, Clarke asks us to engage in a process of healing, of making ourselves whole again.

Exhibiting artistsToggle

Allana Clarke


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