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Photographer Tina Gutierrez and designer Da’Mon Butler collaborate in re-Adorned | Catharsis to explore the cultural memories of their respective Cuban-Appalachian and African-American heritage and experience. This series of studio photographs seeks to reincorporate items and people who have been omitted from traditional art history texts and mainstream fashion, while capturing a cathartic human story reinterpreted with each telling and each viewing.
Alongside the photographs, Butler (whose followers know him as NOMAD3176—“Nomad” being his first name backward and “3176” reflecting his birthdate of March 17, 1966) presents a selection of adornments that translate historical aspects of tribal African ornamentation in found and unexpected materials. A central influence in the design is the landfill—our consumption, the fingerprint of our existence. Butler’s archival re-ordering of materials inspires a cultural memory of ancestral African attire and asks all wearers, particularly African-American men, to re-order their personal archive of experience to transcend the burden of external history and its current consequence. By re-appropriating discarded, found materials into fine art fashion adornments, Butler gives new importance to the items, just as adorning the figure gives an importance to the wearer’s identity and projection of personality.
Gutierrez’s photographs capture the cause and effect relationship between Butler’s adornments and the wearer—combining fashion, movement, and photographic impact to present a dramatic series that, like theater, involves the viewer in the human struggle for identity and understanding. It is through the revelatory presentation of the photographs that together Gutierrez and Butler ask viewers to re-see the materials, re-see people, and re-see their world.
Also On View: View photography and artwork on display for the upcoming production of “1984” by George Orwell, a new play by Robert Icke and Duncan Macmillian. FotoFocus attendees receive a discount on tickets to this production. Visit cincyshakes.com for more information.
1195 Elm St
Cincinnati, OH 45202
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