This June, Interface is pleased to present a new solo exhibition by Dionne Lee. Working in photography, collage, and video, Lee engages the complications and dual legacies within representations of the American landscape and considers the history of black bodies on American soil as a lens for examining her own relationship to nature.
For her exhibition at Interface, Lee will present several new photographs, a video, and handmade ropes. The work focuses on Lee’s personal relationship to water and its historical implications—from the middle passage to climate change—while considering its precarious state both locally and globally. The layered and evocative photographs are images of nature transformed through collage, repetitive copying, and scanning, before reaching their final form as silver gelatin prints.
Lee’s new video piece depicts the artist traversing the natural landscape with a divining rod in search of water. Meanwhile, the handmade ropes Lee will present are left unwound at the ends, following the splicing techniques used by sailors in preparation for joining ropes to increase their strength and durability. Aesthetically and conceptually, they evoke divergent associations such as bondage and survival tactics.
Lee has produced a potent body of work for this exhibition rooted in history, stereotypes around fear and who can survive (i.e. swim) in water, rising oceans and inland drought, all ultimately grappling with water’s ability to simultaneously support and threaten life.
There will be a panel discussion organized by Elena Gross at the end of this exhibition - and a reader with suggested readings by the panelists will be made available throughout the exhibition.