The third edition of the Uptown Triennial presents work by artists from Upper Manhattan and beyond that is representative of the history, culture, and contemporary issues of Harlem and spans the visual arts, media, and sound. The 1980s and 2000s saw musicians and rappers pushing both the sonic landscape and the changing representation of Black urban society. A new visual aesthetic followed with its own language and the next generation of visual artists became interested in exploring the intersection and/or juxtaposition of sonic and visual traditions.
Harlem has long been a crossroads of cultures, and art’s ability to serve and generate widespread healing across differences calls for, in our current age, new hybrid forms that engage the senses and reawaken a sense of possibility and even awe. Uptown Triennial 2023 includes a wide range of practices—painting, textiles, sculpture, gifs, hybrid sound/art projects, web projects, moving images, multimedia artworks, installations, and textural/compositional pieces—spanning a range of genres representative of Harlem’s diversity. Throughout, the exhibition explores the significance of the many sonic forms of expression in Harlem—from jazz to soundscapes to hip-hop—for the visual arts.
Wallach Art Gallery’s mission is to bring together studio, media, post-graffiti, interdisciplinary, and performing artists that resonate with Harlem’s visual and sonic realities and imaginaries.
Through its research they have identified, generally speaking, five groupings that represent distinct approaches that together create a dynamic dialogue and exchange of ideas:
Visual composition referencing formal aspects of music
Textile and sculptural works representing performing musicians and their instruments
Visual and sound installations based on academic historical research of specific
Underrepresented musical communities
Personal and biographical narratives with musical references
Among the artists in the exhibition are Michael Cummings, Sonia Louise Davis, Ivan Forde, Kathleen Granados, Carl Hancock Rux, Lucia Hierro, Carlos Jesus Martinez Dominguez, Beau McCall, Dindga McCannon, RaFia Santana.
The Uptown Triennial 2023 will take place from June 23 to September 17, 2023. The Miriam & Ira D. Wallach Art Gallery, Lenfest Center for the Arts, is located at 615 West 129th Street, 6th Floor, NYC.
Uptown Triennial 2023 is curated by:
Betti-Sue Hertz, Director and Chief Curator
Lewis Long, Associate Director, External Affairs
Souleo, Independent Curator
Uptown Triennial 2023 + Sundae Sermon Afternoon on Saturday, July 8th from 1:00 to 4:00pm.
Uptown Triennial 2023 Panel Discussion on Saturday, September 9 from 1:30 to 3:00pm