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Updated: Sep 4, 2023

Works by Fernando Alvarez, Sheryl Anaya, Sarah Hunt, Benjamin Loftis, Max Marshall, Enrique Navarez, Madi Ortega, Corrie Thompson, Adrianna Touch, and Lauren Walker,

August 4-26, 2023

BNSF Railway Gallery

Curator Statement

As we approached the exhibition request for shows featuring “local artists,” we stepped back to ask: What does it mean to be a local? At first, the answer seems simple; a local is someone who belongs to a particular place, a specific area, or neighborhood. But, as with many things, closer inspection only led us to interrogate the implications and boundaries of the term.

We as curators are also bound to the geographic and cultural spaces which we inhabit. In reflecting on this positionality, we went in a direction as close to home as possible. The three of us, as TCU Art History MA students, thought immediately of the most personally local of all: the artists across the hall. Thus, all of the artists featured in this show are current or recently graduated students from TCU’s Studio Art MFA program. The development of this show has been a means of forging community between our own departments—an essential element in building a sense of local identity and belonging. Through conversation with these artists, we have curated a series of works that aim to reflect upon each artists’ sense of what being a local means to them and what role it plays upon their artistic practices. Several of the artists featured in this show straddle physical space and conceptual place in both identity and practice. These artists deal with issues of generational identity, memory, and trauma as they play out in physical and mental. Another prominent subcategory of our exhibition is described as the “body as site” --referring to the body that acts as a vehicle both expressed by and expressing one's location. Thus, the body acts as an inherited place and capable of being used to contemplate one’s own personal history. Yet others in this group address the tangible surroundings of familiar places where they are one of only a few locals.

These interior and exterior lived spaces hold memory, history, and family ties. The artists in this group capture a place through its material, corporeal, and definite details, revealing an intimate knowledge that could only be expressed by a local.

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