Saya Woolfalk: Field Notes from the Empathic Universe September 23 to November 19, 2023 NXTHVN 169 Henry St New Haven, CT 06511 United States
NXTHVN, an international art institution in the Dixwell neighborhood of New Haven, CT, is pleased to present Field Notes from the Empathic Universe, a solo exhibition of works by Saya Woolfalk on view from September 23 to November 19, 2023. The exhibition features an immersive video installation exploring portraiture and a series of new mixed-media collages, transformed by Woolfalk’s digitally-collaged murals activated outside of the NXTHVN gallery in the space’s ramp wall and elevator.
Known for her site-specific, multimedia works that investigate global traditions and cultural difference, Woolfalk is the creator of the “Empathics”—fictional futuristic beings who time-travel and shape-shift across the multiverse.
These beings are not merely culturally heterogeneous, they also cross species and share genetic material with plants. Titled “Cloudscape,” this four-channel immersive video installation creates a luminous environment of plant forms, digitally constructed portraits and landscape fragments. Visitors will have the opportunity to explore the world of the Empathics, a running narrative Woolfalk has developed through a series of exhibitions over the past nine years.
“We’re excited to welcome Saya Woolfalk’s exhibition at NXTHVN,” says Kalia Brooks, Director of Programs and Exhibitions. “Woolfalk’s exploration across a hybrid of global traditions aligns perfectly with our work bringing together and uplifting artists from a wide range of backgrounds. I’m excited to see how Woolfalk’s transformation of our space immerses visitors in her multicultural world.” This installation initially premiered in 2021 at Newark Art Museum, where Woolfalk studied their herbaria (plant specimens) and landscape painting collections, reinterpreting these artifacts—and their relation to American identity—from the perspective of the Empathics.
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