Texas Isaiah Horatio-Valenzuela

 

ARTIST STATEMENT

I am interested in the possibilities that can emerge by inviting Black and Brown TLGBQIA+ individuals to participate in the photographic process, and to collectively shift the positionality of dominant narratives in photography by examining the importance of legacy, self-empowerment, emotional justice, protection, and topophilia.  

 The approach centers the intimacy built and nurtured between a person and a place. Through memory (autobiographical or ancestral), a sitter chooses the location they desire. We collectively think about what it means for a person to be at home in their feelings and body. Due to the lack of consensual space for Queer and Trans bodies within image-making, I propose conversations about the ways images can travel through a public domain. The sitter will retain the copyright to their legacy. The time that is carved out enables more empathetic and intentional participation on both sides. This process can rebalance the relationship between a sitter and a visual narrator during the photographic process. This exploration brought forth several sample works that lead to two significant projects (My Name Is My Name and Excellentia Mollitia Victoria (2018). 

In 2018, I have been gravitating towards displaying the intimacy between Black Queer men of cisgender and transgender experiences. Within the overall conversations involving masculinity, there has been little to no visual representations of Black trans men. It is important archive the exchange of care and emerge beyond the binary system of manhood and masculinity, despite the differences in socialization.   

 

CV

SOLO EXHIBITIONS
2014
BLACKNESS, NYU Kimmel Galleries – Kimmel Center for University Life, New York, NY

GROUP EXHIBITIONS
2018
The California Sunday Magazine Presents – At Home: In The American West, Aperture Gallery, NYC, NY
No Commission, Art Basel, Miami, FL
The New Contemporaries Vol I, Residency, Los Angeles, CA
Made in L.A. 2018 (Excellentia, Mollitia, Victoria, 2018 with EJ Hill), Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, CA
FOUR. (We Buy Gold), Sargent’s Daughters, NYC, NY
black is a color, Antenna, New Orleans, LA
Julius Eastman: That Which Is Fundamental presented in conjunction with the Eastman Estate, The Kitchen, NYC, NY
2017
FICTIONS, The Studio Museum in Harlem, Harlem, NY
black is a color, Charlie James Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
Julius Eastman: That Which Is Fundamental presented in conjunction with the Eastman Estate, Slought Foundation – Philadelphia, PA
Torrent Tea : Queer Space and Photographic Futures, Newspace Center for Photography, Portland, OR
2015
Harlem Postcards, The Studio Museum in Harlem, New York, NY
2014
Reflexivity, Sanaa Festival, Mount Rainier Artist Lofts, Mount Rainier, MD (2014)
Visualizing Queerness: 7 Contemporary Artists, Dixon Place, New York, NY (2014)
2013
NuMad, 3rdeye (Sol)ation Gallery, Brooklyn, NY (2013)
Visions of a Community, Saltspace, New York, NY (2012)
Gordan Parks 100, Freecandy, Brooklyn, NY (2011)

VIDEO
Director/Producer, “TOGETHERNESS/COMPROMISE” – Music Video/Short Film (2014)

PANEL DISCUSSIONS/LECTURES

2018
Artist Talk: Texas Isaiah, Art and Practice, Los Angeles, CA
Running in Circles with Erin Christovale and Amanda Hunt, Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, CA
Artists’ Presentation and Discussion, Visual Reference, Residency Art Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
Artists’ Panel Discussion, Toyin Ojih Odutola in conversation with Yaa Gyasi and Texas Isaiah, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY
2017
Artists on Artists: Fictions, The Studio Museum in Harlem, Harlem, NY
CCA Photo Lecture Series, California College of the Arts, Oakland Campus, CA