A Visit to The Dorchester Art Project

I had the opportunity to visit the Dorchester Art Project the other week and was delighted to discover a vibrant community space with artist studios a new co-working center, and an art gallery.

They describe themselves best:

Dorchester Art Project is a community-driven art space in Fields Corner. Our mission is to serve artists in Dorchester, Boston and Greater Boston by providing affordable studio, performance, gallery and community gathering space. We are run by Brain Arts Organization which is a 501(c)3 nonprofit and volunteer collective of artists who believe in art centric programming and conscious cultural empowerment. http://www.brain-arts.org

Dorchester Art Project

Into the Wiild: Answering Why the Wild Things Are by Cliff Notez and Nick AR Martin was the show on view in their main gallery during my visit. This exhibition (which was on view through February 9th 2020) was a multi-sensory experience, as visually, the viewer were taken through a response to Maurice Sendak’s beloved children’s book Where the Wild Things Are and also invited to consider questions of mental health.

Into the Wiild: Answering Why the Wild Things Are Installation

This show is an insight into the kind of innovative and ambitious programming that the Dorchester Art Project puts on in its space:

The show is an immersive dive into imaginary world created by our protagonist, Leon, as they confront their repressed emotions of anger, frustration, anxiety, and depression. In experiencing this show, audiences will be encouraged to explore the impact trauma, oppression, and racial injustice on the mental health of people of color. This show will artistically and sonically explore themes of mental health as it relates to the experiences of a person of color unveiling their own identity through expression of self, defining independence and challenging of authority.

Dorchester Art Project

Artists involved in this exhibition included:

  • Cliff Notez
  • Nick Martin
  • Chanel Thearvil
  • Dubem Okafor
  • Justine Bowe

It turns out that Cliff Notez and Nick AR Martin curated the show, rather than one writing the music and the other creating the visual art as I had initially assumed (and hence I lazily didn’t note the details of each piece. For this I hope the artists whose work I photographed will forgive me.

I enjoyed the fact that this wasn’t a show merely based on two dimensional artwork or sculpture, but also encompassed music. The newest album by Cliff Notez, Why the Wild Things Are, was central to the experience of the show.

The music, with its infectious beats, was available through QR codes to accompany the visual narrative. Songs such as Massochists and Rebel and Losing Crowns II, are polished singles that I’m excited to listen to on repeat and can be found on Spotify.

I really enjoyed seeing what some of these up-and-coming artists created for the show. There were artists I didn’t know and vibrant colors and compositions.

The Dorchester Art Project fills a unique role in the Boston area and I look forward to seeing and supporting their adventurous work in the years to come!

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