Jacolby Satterwhite: Spirits Roaming on the Earth
Aug 14 - Dec 5, 2021
Miller ICA at Carnegie Mellon University will present the first major monographic survey of Jacolby Satterwhite’s wide-ranging practice. Organized by Elizabeth Chodos, Spirits Roaming on the Earth traces the last decade of Satterwhite’s panoramic oeuvre, cataloging his evolution as an artist and exploring his creative lifeworld.
Satterwhite incorporates a broad set of real and fantastical references in his work—drawing from sources that include art history, video gaming, queer club scenes, and Black culture—informing the polyvalent visions found in his 3D animated films, sculptures, electronic dance album, and performances. Within the artist’s rich mythology emerges an essential moral lesson on the healing capacities of human creativity. Satterwhite possesses an alchemical ability to transform existential uncertainty into a generative engine of resilience, reinvention, and celebration—a quality he shares with his late mother and muse, Patricia Satterwhite, who leveraged her own irrepressible creative energy to transform hardship into new worlds of possibility.
A world-builder himself, Satterwhite has developed a multiform gestalt that can be fully appreciated for the first time in this exhibition and its companion monograph How lovly is me being as I am, which is edited by Elizabeth Chodos, Andrew Durbin and with text by Sasha Bonét, essays by Malik Gaines, Jane Ursula Harris, Legacy Russell, and an interview with Kimberly Drew. Taken together, the book and exhibition present an extraordinary creative trajectory that cannot be fully understood only through its component parts. Mapping this holistic view of Satterwhite’s singular ability to masterfully synthesize personal, theoretical, and pop-cultural inputs across a wide range of materials and genres with unmatched skill and dexterity affirms his position as one of the preeminent makers and thinkers of our time.
This exhibition was made possible with support from The National Endowment for the Arts, The Frank Ratchye Studio for Creative Inquiry, Center for Arts and Society, Mitchell-Innes & Nash, and with major support from The Andy Warhol Foundation, the College of Fine Arts, Regina and Marlin Miller, and other individual donors.
Image credit: Jacolby Satterwhite, Black Luncheon, 2020. Animated neon, unique. 84 by 88 in. 213.4 by 223.5 cm. Mitchell-Innes & Nash.