Body Politics: Art, Identity and Memory
Award-winning Los Angeles-based visual artist Alison Saar explores her own artistic practice and that of the Luba people of Central Africa with African art scholar and curator Polly Nooter Roberts. Using memory and the use of the female body as a mnemonic for social and political history, they explore race and gender through this conversation on artistic form.
Alison Saar has exhibited her work throughout the US for over thirty years. Saar's sculptures explore the role of women, African-American history, and African religious traditions. Saar uses the history and associations of her materials, everyday experience, Greek mythology and African art and practice, to create work rich with cultural and historic references. Saar is the recipient of two National Endowment Awards as well as a Guggenheim Fellowship. Her work is included in many public collections including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Museum of Modern Art and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Alison Saar is represented by L.A. Louver, where her solo exhibition of recent work, entitled Slough, is on view September 3 through October 5.
Mary (Polly) Nooter Roberts is Professor in UCLA's Department of World Arts and Cultures/Dance and Consulting Curator for African Art at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. She served as Senior Curator at the Museum for African Art until 1994 and as Deputy Director and Chief Curator of UCLA’s Fowler Museum until 2008. Roberts is the author and curator of thematic books and exhibitions that explore the philosophical underpinnings of African visual arts and expressive culture. Together with Allen F. Roberts, she produced the award-winning works Memory: Luba Art and the Making of History and A Saint in the City: Sufi Arts of Urban Senegal.