Red for power, yellow for happy, blue for competence; Power Colors, curated by Amanda Smith and Angela Zonunpari, examines the associative influence of color and its links to history, identity, and authority. Using a wide range of production skills, the four artists in the exhibition articulate and reconstitute fragmented experiences of place, personhood, and politics in vivid color.
Marsha Mack (Denver, CO) and Nicole Maloof (Bronx, NY) use the color yellow as a lynchpin in their investigations of how cultural identity is shaped by language, social customs, and economic systems. For Maloof, that investigation begins with a simple question: What color is a banana? Mack’s approach is equally pointed, creating objects, images, and installation that reframe the experience of her Vietnamese heritage through the lens of a tourist. Amy Jarding’s (Sioux Falls, SD) intuitive use of color in her fiber-based work serves as lively counterpoint to these research driven practices, while Amanda Smith’s (Omaha, NE) highly personal sense of color, space, and vision recall “past lives” through the process of revisiting old paintings and reworking them as quilts; new objects, steeped in cultural tradition, that become carefully constructed retrospective heirlooms.