June 19, 2021

Kenturah Davis at Jeffrey Deitch Gallery

Kenturah Davis’s exhibit, (a)Float, (a)Fall, (a)Dance, (a)Death, at Jeffrey Deitch in NYC, explores how we as humans communicate with one another, through more than just words
Published in
Galleries

About the Exhibit: Kenturah Davis: (a)Float, (a)Fall, (a)Dance, (a)Death

Kenturah Davis’s exhibit, (a)Float, (a)Fall, (a)Dance, (a)Death, is on view at Jeffrey Deitch’s 18 Wooster Street location from May 8–June 26, 2021. 

Kenturah Davis at Jeffrey Deitch Gallery
Kenturah Davis at Jeffrey Deitch Gallery

Davis’s exhibit “fuses language, figuration and performance.” (source) At first glance these look like just beautiful, large scale drawings. But if you look closer you see that these drawings are actually done on top of raised writings.

Kenturah Davis at Jeffrey Deitch Gallery
Kenturah Davis

It almost reminds me of the ‘nature rubbings’ we’d create as kids, where you’d place a leaf or flower under a piece of paper and draw over it with a crayon. 

Kenturah Davis at Jeffrey Deitch Gallery
Kenturah Davis

However, these aren’t just any type of writings. These writings are transcripts from the Senate debates around passing the 13th amendment, which is the amendment that abolished slavery in the U.S. 

Kenturah Davis at Jeffrey Deitch Gallery
“The amendment itself, in just a few lines, purports a concept of freedom by virtue of abolishing slavery on the condition that one is not a criminal. The debate exemplifies a framework that, on the one hand facilitates freedom, and simultaneously facilitates confinement. This range of outcomes is suggested in the drifting, shifting, and blurring of the figures in the drawings as they intersect the text.” - Kenturah Davis (source
Kenturah Davis at Jeffrey Deitch Gallery
Kenturah Davis at Jeffrey Deitch Gallery

In general in Kenturah Davis’s works, she illustrates the statement that the way we communicate and language itself is so much more than just words. It’s our body language and more. 

Kenturah Davis at Jeffrey Deitch Gallery
“This project began with a very open-ended question about how the apparatus of language might function as a kind of choreography for how we exist and move through the world” - Kenturah Davis (source
Kenturah Davis at Jeffrey Deitch Gallery
“Oftentimes, the work I make is guided by a particular way of thinking about how we’re using language. Lately, I’ve been thinking through the ways in which language fails us. Sometimes language does not seem to offer us the precise way to deliver a description about what our situation is and the conditions we’re living in” - Kenturah Davis for the LA Times (source)
Kenturah Davis at Jeffrey Deitch Gallery
Kenturah Davis at Jeffrey Deitch Gallery
Kenturah Davis at Jeffrey Deitch Gallery

Exhibit Walkthrough

To see a walkthrough of the exhibit, skip ahead to 17:37 in the video below.

About the Artist: Kenturah Davis

Kenturah Davis (no relation to Karon Davis or the late Noah Davis) splits her time between Los Angeles and Accra, Ghana. She’s a fairly young artist, having just graduated with her MFA from Yale in 2018, but she already has an impressive resume of solo exhibits and public projects. 

Kenturah Davis at Jeffrey Deitch Gallery
“The work of Kenturah Davis is a lesson in seeing. Each encounter with her work reminds you that true sight is a discipline, a practice” - The LA Times (source)
Kenturah Davis at Jeffrey Deitch Gallery

You can follow her in Instagram or read more about her on her website.

More images

No items found.

Join my mailing list for updates on my latest posts and videos.

Thank you for subscribing!
Something went wrong, please fill out the required fields

Latest posts

View all
July 30, 2021
Urs Fischer at Sadie Coles HQ 2021

Urs Fischer at Sadie Coles HQ

July 13, 2021
Ivan Morley at Bortolami Gallery 2021

Ivan Morley at Bortolami Gallery

July 2, 2021
Art on Governor's Island 2021

Art on Governor's Island