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Fall 2021

"New Works"
AACC Visual Arts Faculty Show

Exhibit Dates 
Aug. 30-Sept. 24 (Closed Labor Day)

Wednesday, Sept. 15, 5-7 p.m.

About the Exhibit
This exhibit will highlight recent works by Anne Arundel Community College’s visual arts faculty. “New Works” includes works created in the past few years by the vibrant artists teaching in AACC’s Visual Arts department. The works will include photography,  sculpture, painting, ceramics, design, video and more.

Marybeth Chew, Erik Dunham, James Fitzsimmons, Zoe Friedman,Teddy Johnson, Brian Kelley, Matt Klos, Jin Lee, Abigail McBride, Lindsay McCulloch, Chris Mona, Matthew Moore, Sara Allen Prigodich, Wilfredo Valladares and Joe Yablonsky

Masks are required. If you are not a current AACC student, just fill out a health attestation prior to entering the gallery. Attestations and a dropbox will be available outside the gallery door.

Zoë Charlton: "The Latter to the Former"

Exhibition Dates
Oct. 12-Nov. 12

Oct. 14, 5-7 p.m.

Visitation Protocol
Masks are required. If you are not currently a student, be sure to fill out a health attestation form prior to entering the gallery. Attestations and a dropbox will be available outside the gallery door.

About the Exhibit
The exhibit is curated by Wilfredo Valladares in conjunction with Teddy Johnson, Cade Gallery director, and the artist.

"The Latter to the Former" is a solo exhibition of sculptures, large scale drawings with collage, and small works on paper by Zoë Charlton. This unique grouping unites pieces from four different bodies of work created over the last three years. An artist, educator and curator of note, Charlton is a prominent member of the region's arts community with both a national and international reputation. Her work brings together vital questions regarding representation, race, figuration and history, with a vigorous exploration of material and form.

About the Works
In this presentation, the overlaps between each series highlight the artist’s ongoing questions about figuration: how representations of bodies, even when abstracted, matter. In "The Latter to the Former," it’s the space between physical objects and their 2-dimensional representations, drawn and printed images, legibility and abstraction, and historical accuracy and personal narratives that have generated a broad range of dynamic content. The title comes from Frederick Douglass' 1852 Fourth of July speech excerpted below.

“The fact is, ladies and gentlemen, the distance between this platform and the slave plantation, from which I escaped, is considerable — and the difficulties to be overcome in getting from the latter to the former, are by no means slight. That I am here to-day is, to me, a matter of astonishment as well as of gratitude. You will not, therefore, be surprised, if in what I have to say, I evince no elaborate preparation, nor grace my speech with any high sounding exordium. With little experience and with less learning, I have been able to throw my thoughts hastily and imperfectly together; and trusting to your patient and generous indulgence, I will proceed to lay them before you.” 

About the Artist
Zoë Charlton makes large scale figure drawings, primarily of women adorned with culturally loaded objects and covered in densely collaged landscapes. She works in sculpture, animation, and collaborates with other artists to make installations and videos. She grew up in the military, primarily in northern Maine. She received an MFA degree from the University of Texas, Austin (1999) and a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Florida State University (1993). In 2001, she attended the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture. Since 2003, Charlton has been teaching full time at American University (Washington, D.C.) and received tenure in 2009. She served as chair for the Department of Art from 2015-2018 and is the first Black American tenured, full professor in the department. Charlton holds a seat on the Maryland State Arts Council, is a board member of the Washington Project for the Art, and is a co-founder of ‘sindikit, a collaborative art initiative, with her colleague Tim Doud. They created the ‘sindikit project to engage their overlapping creative research in gender, sexuality, race, and the economies of things. Her work has been presented in national and international group exhibitions including in Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, and the Zacheta National Gallery of Art, (Warsaw, Poland).

Details Regarding the Bodies of Work Featured
C.O.O. (Country of Origin, 2017-2020) are casts of masks from different countries and regions in Africa. From 2013-2018, the artist was making drawings and paintings of women wearing African masks as commentaries on personal identity, womanhood, external generalizations of race/ethnicity in tourist markets, and the commodification of Blackness and Africanness. Not knowing the history of the masks or their country of origin further mystified, fetishized and objectified the artist’s relationship to them as objects. As objects that were ostensibly made by artists from particular countries for outsiders – for the tourist market – Charlton reflected on her connection to them, as a Black American and a consumer of culture that is part of her ancestry. 

There are six distinct styles of masks from the Fang, Bembe, Luba and Lega, representing three countries – Republic of Cameroon, Democratic Republic of the Congo and Gabon (Gabonese Republic). The masks are hand cast replicas of the original and painted in bright colors. The significance of the material – plastic – is complicated. It simultaneously comments upon labor, something cheaply made, commodity, malleability and resilience (difficult to dispose). 

The small works on paper in the Luster series that hang in the small gallery are made with glitter, a disposable, yet playful material. They are silhouettes of African statues from art history books. In some, the reference is recognizable. In others, the images look like abstract shapes that have little to do with their source.

Rendition (Sib No. 1-6) is inspired by a 60-inch statue of a pregnant woman attributed to the Bangwa in Cameroon that was purchased in 2014 from an antique store north of Baltimore. The original African statue mirrors the artist’s height and general size, even though its body is an abstraction/distortion of a real body. Each Sib is an attempt at making a replica, of duplicating a body that because of the conditions of hand, chance, process and opportunity, the ‘genetic’ coding generated variations that resulted in individuality. There are six versions of Sib, each one black and blue. Though they are products from the same mold, they are not identical. 

Two large scale drawings from the Compromise Series flank the sculptural work. The drawings are in homage to her grandmother who began purchasing land in the early 1940s in the Florida panhandle. The woman’s body in the artwork is drawn and painted. The collaged landscapes and masks may be familiar images as they are sourced from scrapbook materials used in craft projects and online sources. The familiarity (of the images) makes them accessible, playful and curious.


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The gallery is on the main floor of the Cade Center for Fine Arts, in room 218. 


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