What is your name and title/occupation?
Hi, my name is T Eliott Mansa. I am a visual artist, based in Miami Florida.
What are you working on right now (or how has your work changed over the last few months)?
I am currently putting the finishing touches on pieces for my COVID delayed solo exhibition “For Those Gathered in the Wind”, presented by the Ellies and Oolite Arts at LnS Gallery. While this work has a large sculptural component, during this period of quarantine I have found myself adding drawing to mix. It has really been convenient way to continue my practice.
What are you reading/watching/listening to?
I literally just picked up Frank B. Wilderson III’s ‘Afropessimism’. It seems to really have influenced the discourse of the current moment. I am also reading Christina Sharpe’s “In the Wake; On Blackness and Being”. There seem to be connecting sinew between itself and Wilkerson’s work in addressing the centrality of Anti-Blackness to modernity and the American project.
Do you have a MOCA memory that you want to share?
A MOCA memory that I find myself returning to is the exhibit POTOPRENS; The Urban Artists of Port-Au-Prince. In my travels, I have visited Ouidah, Benin, and Havana, Cuba, and I have found a certain triangulation between those cities and Miami, and I think even more so Port-Au-Prince. Miami is kinda the axis that connects the ancestral spiritual practices of these cities, and I think that the exhibit showed how the incorporation of found objects into the practices of sculpture and assemblage seems to be a common thread to the artmaking practices from Gee’s Bend Alabama to Port-Au-Prince, Haiti. As an artist who fortuitously uses similar materials in his work, I was just stunned at the brilliance of the exhibition.