Visual Language to open at Faction Art Projects ~ Harlem




Umar Rashid, In Klingon, 2017. Image courtesy Faction Art Projects

Faction Art Projects returns this Fall in a collaboration with the East Los Angeles Gallery, Subliminal Projects, in a bi-coastal exhibition entitled Visual Language. This group exhibition examines the integration of word and images in art and Western Culture, bringing together a broad spectrum of alternative strategies for expressing contemporary everyday experiences.

The exhibition will run simultaneously at both galleries. In each gallery the artworks will work in parallel or collaboratively, while others will juxtapose and subvert ~ offering a strong critical frame through which to view contemporary culture in this period of “fake news” and “alternative facts.”

The exhibition brings together a wide-range of artists, each taking their own road in expressing experiences, transferred onto canvas. Below are some of the artists and artworks that will be on view.

Umar Rashid, “Zenithing In The time of Yeah, it’s all good mostly.” Break the chains! Stele for the coronation of Horace and Isabel, the King and Queen of Harlem.  Image courtesy of Faction Art Projects

Umar Rashid (Frohawk Two Feathers), blurring the lines between African history, astronomy, and superheroes ~ the above image tells a story of the fictitious Kingdom of Harlem (1790-1795), with references to objects that can be seen from the earth “as defined by the French astronomer Charles Messier in the late 18th century.”  His Kingdom of Harlem is embeded in the fictional nation of Frengland. This is but one of a plethora of worlds he creates, as he re-imagines 18th century colonial history, along with equally beautiful and engaging maps.

Shepard Fairey, Beyond the Streets Billboard, 2018. Image courtesy of Faction Art Projects

The artist collective, Subliminal Projects,  was the creation of Shepard Fairey (above artwork) and Blaize Blouin in 1995 ~ with a major focus on introducing skateboarding culture and design to the art world. In 2003, Subliminal Projects Gallery officially opened in East Los Angeles.  Fairey, an artist and social activist, was a major part of the Street Art movement, “communicating his brand of social critique via prints, murals, stickers, and uncomfortable conversations…that stimulate uncomfortable emotions.”

Guerrilla Girls, Wealth Power, 2016  Image courtesy of Faction Art Projects

The anonymous group of female artist/activists Guerrilla Girls was formed in New York City in 1985. Their mission ~ bringing gender and racial inequality into focus, spreading the word with art – posters, books, billboards, and public appearances ~ although masked, to hide a personal identity that they feel deflects from their purpose ~ ever so focused on the issues as “the conscience of the art world.”  This past June, The Guerrilla Girls discussed ‘The Future of Responsibility’ at The Rubin Museum of Art as Part of a year-long exhibition, The Future, and last year, at The Whitney as part of An Incomplete History of Protest.

Wayne White, I Started a Joke. Image courtesy Faction Art Projects

The artist, art director, puppeteer, set designer, animator, cartoonist and illustrator, Wayne White has, in recent years, taken on the business of spreading a message ~ in the form of painting phrases or words on mass-produced lithographs he finds in secondhand thrift stores. His messages are painstakingly painted in a glossy, 3-D style.  Earlier this year we viewed his third solo exhibit at Joshua Liner Gallery.

D* Face, Peace is a Dirty Word, 2015. Bronze. Image courtesy Faction Art Projects

The contemporary British street artist, D*Face a.k.a Dean Stockton (above) is best-known for hand-drawing stickers and posters, adhering them throughout the streets of London (and world-wide) ~ and murals critiquing the modern world. “Thematically, my work always draws upon personal experiences, whether that’s the saturation of media in our lives, our fascination with celebrity and stardom, or more singular experiences such as the loss of loved ones.”


Some of the participating artists include Betty Tompkins, Chad Kouri, Dface, Ed Ruscha, Guerrilla Girls, Jenny Holzer, Nathaniel Russell, Ramsey Dau, Scott Albrecht, Shepard Fairey, Wayne White.

Visual Language, a Bi-Coastal Group Exhibition presented by Subliminal Projects and Faction Art Projects will be on view in New York from September 14 to October 6, with Private View on September 13 from 6:30-8:30pm. Faction Art Projects is located at 2602 Frederick Douglass Blvd, at 139th Street, in Harlem.

Join the Opening Reception at Facebook Event.