ARTIST TALK WITH DEBORAH ROBERTS
SATURDAY, AUGUST 5TH, 2023 | 5:00 PM – 6:30 PM
“Whether I was aware of it or not, otherness has been at the center of my consciousness since the beginning of my artistic career,” says inspiring Visual Artist Deborah Roberts.
Join us at The Church as we dive into Robert’s work, process, and her thoughts and reflection on race, beauty, identity. How do societal pressures influence us, and what are the challenges we must make to claim our space within the context of beauty?
Roberts’ work challenges stereotypes and myths and is layered with symbols, multiplicity, and double meaning. Inspired by the power and mythos of renaissance paintings and fashion photography, and aware of the absence of women of color, Roberts found her early ideals about race and beauty needing to be questioned, examined, and investigated. It creates a dialogic that asks the audience: “what is beautiful?”, “Who gets to be beautiful?”, “What is Beauty?”, and most importantly, “Are you, dear viewer, capable of seeing the individual beneath the social projection? Would you fight for them to see it too?”
Roberts’s work Fight the Power, a reference to the 1989 Public Enemy Song featured in Spike Lee’s film, Do the Right Thing, is part of Strike Fast, Dance Lightly: Artists on Boxing and will be on view through September 3rd, Wed-Sun, 11 AM -5 PM.
Deborah Roberts (American, b. 1962) is a mixed media artist whose work challenges the notion of ideal beauty. Her work has been exhibited internationally across the USA and Europe. Roberts’ work is in the collections of the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, New York; Brooklyn Museum, New York, New York; The Studio Museum in Harlem, New York, New York; LACMA, Los Angeles, California; the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, Richmond, Virginia, Guggenheim Museum, New York, New York, and the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, Fort Worth, Texas, among several other institutions. She was selected to participate in the Robert Rauschenberg Residency (2019) and was a finalist for the 2019 Outwin Boochever Portrait Competition, as well as the recipient of the Anonymous Was A Woman Grant (2018), and the Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant (2016). Texas Metal of Arts Award (2023) Roberts received her MFA from Syracuse University, New York. She lives and works in Austin, Texas. Roberts is represented by Stephen Friedman Gallery, London and Susanne Vielmetter Los Angeles Projects, CA
The Church was established in 2019 by artists Eric Fischl and April Gornik. Housed in a deconsecrated 19th-century church, its doors were opened in April 2021. Our mission is to foster creativity and to honor the living history of Sag Harbor as a maker village. The East End represents an exceptional artistic legacy, spanning the practices of Indigenous art of several centuries ago, Abstract Expressionists of the mid 20th Century, and the many celebrated writers, makers, musicians, and visual artists of the recent past and current moment. Core programming includes visual art exhibitions, concerts and events, educational programming, workshops, lectures, and an artist’s residency.
48 Madison Street
Sag Harbor, NY 11963
Photo By Moyo Studio