Christopher Cozier One month after being known in that island

Christopher Cozier (b. 1959) is an artist and writer living and working in his native Trinidad. He earned a BFA at the Maryland Institute College of Art, in Baltimore, and an MFA from Rutgers University, in New Brunswick, New Jersey. From 1998 to 2010, he was part of the editorial collective Small Axe, A Caribbean Journal of Criticism, and he was an editorial adviser to BOMBmagazine for their Americas issues from 2003 to 2005). Cozier’s work has been shown widely, including at the Tate Liverpool; the Museum of Art and Design, New York; the Trienial Poli/Grafica de San Juan, Puerto Rico; and the Havana, Berlin, and Sharjah biennials.

ON VIEW: dig&fly series, 2018 to present

ON VIEW: dig&fly series, 2018 to present

Some experts from Brian Fee’s interview with Christopher Cozier.

Q: How would you describe the work you are presenting in one month after being known in that island?

A: The pieces are drawings from my “dig & fly” series, which was shown in Repeating Islands at the 2019 Sharjah Biennial, and which followed from my Entanglements (2015) and Gas Men (2014) video projects. All of this work began, in various forms, some years ago as I began to think about how—perhaps because of academic and empirical research practices in general—the rearrangement of visual research vocabularies could create a denial or deferral of the visual present and future at this juncture of readability and exchange. For example: What shaped contemporary life in the Caribbean, and other colonized places, was no longer exclusively eighteenth- and nineteenth-century sugar production. Nor was it industrial tourism. Oil, gas, and bauxite extraction played a role. Think of OPEC, the Cold War, and Bandung, or the brief moment of federal government in the late 1950s, long before Europe’s involvement.

Q: Given your commitment to community-building in your hometown, how have your experiences living and working abroadaffected or informed your practice as an artist, as a citizen?

A: I have become very interested in itinerancy, in the way we have navigated social spaces across time and geography—as property, as subjects of various crowns, as citizens of possible republics, and now also as borderless communities and networks. If you look at the great thinkers from past generations, like James or Naipaul or Wynter[1], they were on the move, searching territories for both mental and physical limitations.

To explore the other artists on view, click here.
To view the exhibtion One month after being known on that island, click here.

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