Georgetown University’s Maria & Alberto de la Cruz Art Gallery Presents Baseera Khan: Cloak and Dagger and Spagnuolo Gallery Elizabeth M. Webb: Cameo Ground (Children of Paradise)

By Editorial Team on January 17, 2023

Thu, 19 January 2023 - Thu, 06 April 2023

Baseera Khan, 2021. Courtesy of Maria & Alberto de la Cruz Art Gallery.
Opening Reception: Thursday, January 19 from 6pm to 8pm

Baseera Khan: Cloak and Dagger opens at Maria & Alberto de la Cruz Art Gallery, Georgetown University

The Maria & Alberto de la Cruz Art Gallery at Georgetown University is pleased to present a collaboration with the artist Baseera Khan (American, b. 1980; lives Brooklyn). Khan works across several creative platforms to explore and represent one intersectional Muslim Femme experience. Khan describes themself as “a feminist,” and a “Brown American Muslim whose theological upbringing is native to being American.” As a child of Indian-Iranian, Afghani, and East African heritage, Khan has found ways to navigate complicated and unmoored identities. Their work is informed by family histories of immigration and fear of threats of separation, deportation, and dislocation in Texas. However, Khan also shares the rich visual pleasures and desires of their culture and personal experience by creating a tension between lived encounters with exile and kinship, and prejudice and joyful personal exploration.

Khan pointedly asks, “how do you express a politicized and complex identity without revealing too much of yourself? Can an artist create a compelling self-portrait that inspires change without — literally — showing their face?” Photographic works on view here reveal only Khan’s hands, legs, and feet. One Psychedelic Prayer Rug depicts their Nike sneakers, whose custom embroidery express Muslim identity. And circular voids in Acoustic Sound Blankets are filled with the artist’s face and voice when activated, while their body remains cloaked.

This exhibition brings together performance, photography, textiles, and sculpture that illustrate Khan’s active involvement in feminist, decolonization, and LGBTQ+ efforts, as well as their conceptual framework encouraging cross disciplinary connections. “Baseera is a creative star on the rise, ascending towards global recognition. We are thrilled to continue an academic year devoted to exhibitions and programs featuring women-aligned artists with Khan’s unique vision here on the Hilltop,” says the Galleries’ Founding Director and curator of the exhibition, Al Miner.

Baseera Khan: Cloak and Dagger will be on view from January 19th, 2023 – April 6, 2023. An Opening Reception with the artist will take place on Thursday, January 19th from 6:00 – 8:00 pm. Khan will perform at 6:30 pm using their Acoustic Sound Blankets. ​​Registration for this event is not required, and all exhibitions and programs at the Georgetown University Art Galleries are free and open to the public.

View more information on the de la Cruz Gallery website.

Elizabeth M. Webb, Cameo Ground (Children of Paradise), 2018. Courtesy of Spagnuolo Gallery.

Elizabeth M. Webb: Cameo Ground (Children of Paradise) opens at Spagnuolo Gallery, Georgetown University

In the University’s Lucille M. and Richard F. X. Spagnuolo Art Gallery, Elizabeth M. Webb: Cameo Ground (Children of Paradise) uncovers one artist’s family genealogy to examine the history of slavery.  The installation evocatively documents a series of interviews that artist and filmmaker Webb (American, b. 1989; lives Charlottesville, VA) conducted with her great aunt Jane. These ceramic pages tell the stories of the 13 children of Jane’s mother, Paradise, and if they could pass as white or were seen as Black. Webb was not aware until age 18 that her father is of Black lineage. The objects resemble marble, but these works are made of clay — literal earth — referencing the fragility of environment, identity, and communication. Calling to viewers with the ghostly glow of history, illuminated and embossed porcelain words are intentionally difficult to decipher, but vital to comprehend. This exhibition is on view from January 19, 2023 – May 14, 2023.

Upcoming Public Programs:

  • January 19, 2023 – Opening Reception for Baseera Khan: Cloak and Dagger from 6:00 – 8:00 pm.
    Performance by the artist to take place at 6:30 pm.
  • February 8, 2023 – Body Image: A Conversation Featuring Mecca Jamilah Sullivan and Baseera Khan.
    Followed by a book signing of Sullivan’s book Big Girl. Presented in partnership with the Georgetown University Lannan Center. 4:30 pm.
  • March 2, 2023 – Public Dialogue: Rebecca Rutstein. Learn how artist Rebecca Rutstein incorporates science and technology in her artistic practice. Presented in partnership with Georgetown University’s Earth Commons Institute. 6:00 pm.
  • March 16, 2023 – In Dialogue: Elizabeth M. Webb and Andrew Davenport. Join Spagnuolo Gallery’s exhibiting artist Webb and Georgetown PhD Candidate Davenport for a conversation about race, Monticello, and genealogy. 6:00 pm.

Future programs will be announced on the Galleries’ website.

Hours:

  • Wednesday – Saturday 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM
  • Sunday 1:00 – 5:00 PM

Maria & Alberto de la Cruz Art Gallery is located at 3535 Prospect St. NW.

Lucille M. and Richard F. X. Spagnuolo Gallery is located at 1221 36th St. NW.