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Naomi Chambers

Black Community Survival Conference Tea Party Ice Cream Social Moonlit Cinema

2021

From the bright blue sky on one side of the room to the star-filled night time sky on the other, entering Naomi Chambers’ installation is like walking into a wonderland.

This play is a reflection on the (im)possibility of accepting diversity and the other. The fragmented body of the neoplasm—the fruit of unstable conditions—overcomes barriers, loves and denies itself and others, wanders around, forgetting its profession. It frequently and with pleasure divides, goes through dangerous palpation, questions the possibility of contact with the experience of the other. Poorly brought up but very successful, it invites us to a trans-species transition.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Fusce at elit quis felis ullamcorper vehicula non in est. Maecenas finibus pharetra justo et faucibus. Nulla eu tortor vel ex volutpat efficitur. Vivamus placerat turpis in aliquet venenatis. Quisque ac lacinia mauris. Nam quis lobortis elit. Vestibulum sagittis nisi sit amet euismod hendrerit. Mauris non sodales odio. Donec efficitur molestie quam, sed lobortis massa vestibulum ut.

Nunc at arcu sodales nisi porta euismod non vel neque. Phasellus at lobortis ante, in suscipit justo. Proin non purus vitae nisi molestie consectetur. Vestibulum volutpat lobortis interdum. Vestibulum pretium ligula lorem, egestas ultricies lectus ultricies ac. Curabitur venenatis vulputate dolor.

From the bright blue sky on one side of the room to the star-filled nighttime sky on the other, entering Naomi Chambers’ installation is like walking into a wonderland. Taking the 1972 Black Panthers Black Community Survival Conference as the starting point, her installation presents a holistic view of not just what it means to survive, but what it means to thrive and achieve self-actualization for the Black community.

Chambers brings the Panthers’ concept of radical inter-communalism into the 1414 Annex through her creation of stations for the community, including a coffee stop, an outdoor tea party, a moonlit cinema (with animation produced by the artist), and an ice cream social, with handmade polymer ice cream scoops in a variety of flavors.  Chambers’ painted homage to Harriet Tubman fills the wall and is embellished with teddy bears, toys, and stickers. Her work asks us to think about the importance of love, light, food, and play for the health and self-actualization of the community. Chambers invites viewers to be a part of the process (and the community created in her installation) by adding more stickers.

Artist Statement

I am staging an event that draws from the Black Panther Party’s Black Community Survival Conferences of the 1970s. The installation is a continuation of my hack of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, where I think about what Black people in America need to reach self-actualization. I am visiting the work of heroes from our legacy of self-determination, like Huey P. Newton and Harriet Tubman to do this. I began by collecting teddy bear imagery and teacups and rainbows as supports for a family living through hard times. The objects here imagine what we need to survive and thrive: love, light, and teddy bears (soft bodies), food (nourishment), coffee (stay woke) and tea (stay informed) and play.

Exhibition

making home here: September 2, 2021 – April 10, 2022, Curated by Sean Beauford & Sylvia Rhor Samaniego
About The Artist

Naomi Chambers is a painter and sculptor born in Pittsburgh in 1987. She graduated with a double degree from the University of Pittsburgh majoring in Studio Arts and Marketing in 2009. In 2017, she and her husband worked with a collective of artists to open FlowerHouse, a community art studio and creative space in Wilkinsburg where they offer workshops for the predominantly Black community. In 2018, she had her first solo exhibition, Communal Futures at an arts institution, August Wilson Center: African American Cultural Center. She is currently Community Liaison with Alisha Wormsley’s Sibyls Shrine, a residency for creative mamas.

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