Jamea Richmond-Edwards in the studio
Photo by Lyndon French
Jamea Richmond-Edwards' first solo exhibition at Library Street Collective, Currency, will be on view both in her hometown of Detroit and in New York at the Kravets Wehby Gallery. In this body of work, Richmond-Edwards utilizes mythology to deconstruct the definition and etymology of the word currency. By unpacking the word, she analyzes the literal interconnectedness of language and culture as it relates to the present: “‘Currency’ basically encapsulates the ideas that have been running through my mind the past couple of years, and so I decided to exploit the concept creatively. ‘Currency’ explores capitalism. ‘Currency’ is a medium of exchange, both verbally or intellectually. ‘Currency’ is being current—current as in the now.”
Invested in exploring the materiality of collage and improvisational gestures, the featured works include self-portraiture that dwells within the realm of imagination and mythos. Drawing inspiration from her childhood growing up in Detroit, Richmond-Edwards’ archetypal and simultaneously idiosyncratic figures flourished in color and texture reflect the aesthetics of Black Detroit dress, and the ethos of a generation influenced by 90s hip-hop. Through the figures’ sure poses and assertive expressions, Richmond-Edwards confronts internal fears as a means of claiming power. The paintings combine a mixture of emotions, from trauma to uncertainty to excitement and fear, but, above all, are celebrations of love and strength, echoed through the vibrant and fantastical energy that floods each.
Jamea Richmond-Edwards is currently part of a traveling exhibition titled: A Movement in Every Direction: Legacies of the Great Migration co-curated by the Mississippi Museum of Art and the Baltimore Museum of Art, where it will open on October 30, 2022. The exhibition will then travel to the Brooklyn Museum and to the California African American Museum in Los Angeles. Her work has recently been reviewed in ARTnews, Hyperallergic, and The New York Times. In November of 2023, she will be the focus of an exhibition at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Miami.
Jamea Richmond-Edwards: Currency opens October 15th from 6-8 PM at Library Street Collective. The show will be on view until November 30, 2022.
The Fire Next Time, 2022
Acrylic, oil pastel, fabric, glitter, rhinestones, gold leaf, and mixed media collage on canvas
96h x 144w in (canvas)
112h x 152w in (overall with fabric)
Acrylic, oil pastel, fabric and mixed media collage on canvas
72h x 96w in (canvas)
120h x 126w in (overall with fabric)