Curated by Nat Turner Project

swallow is a multi-channel video installation of visual gestures from contemporary television and film exploring parts of black femme existence considered less desirable for consumption. what resistance sits wet and warm in the offal? swallow considers the different imperatives around consumption that exist for black bodies and what it feels like to hunger for things that catch in your throat. how do we read black femme queerness into, underneath and behind these visual spaces? how does it look, feel, and sound, to open things up so that we can fit inside?

Participating scholars

Ashley Stull Meyers
derrais (d.a.) carter
Leo Ariel
Patricia Vazquez

ariella tai is a video artist, film scholar, and independent programmer from queens, new york. they are interested in the materiality of black bodies and black performance as vernaculars which subvert, interrupt or defy the diegetic cohesiveness of narrative. they currently re-appropriate, glitch and video process existing media in attempts to rupture and reconstruct some of the messier emotional realities of black femme existence. they are one half of “the first and the last,” a fellowship, workshop and screening series supporting and celebrating the work of black women and femmes in film, video and new media art.

Nat Turner Project (NTP) functions as a radical space seeking to fill a void in Portland, Oregon, one of the least diverse metropolitan cities in America. NTP allows artists of color to go beyond the usual expositions inherent in presenting the art of marginalized perspectives to a dominant culture; allowing them the freedom to create or express their own language within and without the parameters of racial commodification or designation. NTP creates an environment of inclusivity –– a communal harbor for artists previously silenced by institutional constraints –– and actively provides them spatial priority. Nat Turner Project is made up of Melanie Stevens and maximiliano. Melanie has a background in Political Science, drawing, and sequential art. maximiliano does performance, installation, and poetry. They each bring a variety of skill sets to the project, ranging from curatorial and organizational experience to social practice and public relations.