Round 47 | The Act of Doing: Preserving, Revitalizing and Protecting Third Ward 

Opening + Free Market Square
October 14, 2017 | 4-7pm 

Artist Talks
October 14, 2017 | 3pm  

Viewing Period
October 14, 2017 – March 25, 2018 

Gentrification is reshaping the social and physical landscape of Third Ward, threatening the future of this historic African American community. In the face of uncertainty, an unprecedented coalition of churches, nonprofits, community development corporations, business owners, artists, and residents formed the Emancipation Economic Development Council (EEDC). Since its founding in 2015, the EEDC has developed a rigorous set of strategies for revitalizing and protecting this historic neighborhood while preserving its rich African American culture.  

The Act of Doing amplifies the questions posed by the EEDC – questions of place, displacement, ownership, and creative community organizing - while documenting its formation and early impact on the community through a timeline installation and an interactive space capturing the stories ignored in the gentrification process. While these houses are dedicated to the EEDC's journey, several installations will house a poetic exchange between local artists and the vision of the Council. 

Throughout the duration of Round 47, artists, residents, and community organizers will collaborate to host a series of workshops, events, and direct actions. These events will support the EEDC in achieving its vision for Third Ward, as “a resilient, dynamic, and economically prosperous community where people live, work and thrive in a historically and culturally rich African-American neighborhood.”  

In conjunction with the opening of the Round, Free Market Square will organize a family friendly market with vendors and performers from the Third Ward and communities across Houston.  

Participating artists include Right to Stay, Right to Say (Zeinab Bakhiet, Olutomi Subulade, & Melanie Meleekah Villegas); Brian Ellison; Danielle Fanfair, Harrison Guy, Marlon Hall, & Anthony Suber; Nikita Hodge; Sofia Mekonnen; and Marc Newsome. Round 47 also features Collaboration Timeline House, designed by Adelle Main. 

Round 47 is organized by Ryan N. Dennis, Curator and Programs Director, in collaboration with Dr. Assata Richards of Sankofa Research Institute.

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Neighborhood Fantasies: Evan Coleman + Jesse Lott

Curated by Kathleen Coleman in conjunction with Fotofest 2018

PRH Community Gallery
2521 Holman Street

Viewing Period
March 10 - April 22, 2018

March 10, 4-6pm

Neighborhood Fantasies integrates the spirit of an emerging art photographer Evan Coleman with the work of PRH founding artist Jesse Lott. Join us March 10 from 4-6pm as we open this exhibition, presented in conjunction with Fotofest 2018.

The Houston urban landscape is an eclectic image of symbolic eras in time. The photographer Evan Coleman has captured the images of homes, office buildings, flora, fauna, roads, and houses; front yards where a person rides in a car or walks down a major street and a back road, familiar depictions portrayed in photo montages such as: a trailer, hamburger joints, resale businesses or party events are included. There are familiar images in the collages--a water hose, a variety of mangos, giant watermelons floating across the sky to create everyday dreams as we ride along. Let us not forget the porcelain cats resting in the window of a house, in a day dream; a central, focal image throughout the exhibition. The fantasy photo of a windowsill of cats is inviting Jesse Lott, who inserted a dog to peer at them through the window.

Jesse Lott has made blind cuts, and separated them by color, thus creating the opportunity to assemble a puzzle which has never been solved. This concept in brief can be thought of as documentation of the reality reconstructed as a fantasy supplemented with the original subject matter. Recontextualization places the images into a new perspective, meaning changes within the point of view of the artist applied, which inspires the public to visualize and imagine the symbols or the object commonly viewed in our daily lives. In the collages, a bounce house is cut up and fruit from a stand is placed to add color with common objects to form depth and structure such as concrete.

The countless forms of architecture from one neighborhood to another incorporate Houston’s diversity at its finest, in addition to revealing gentrification from one street to another. Repetitive objects are common features in the artwork in Neighborhood Fantasies therefore a perception is a sense of belonging in the heart of the city through art and collective experiences. The concept is evolving to produce involvement within the community to enlighten themselves within their own area. The artist team will continue to conceive fantasy from random reality.

Neighborhood Fantasies is curated by Kathleen Coleman. Thank you to our sponsors Melanie Lawson, John Guess, A Rocket Moving and Storage, Womack Development, and Mayberry Homes. 

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The Billboard Campaign

In Partnership with HCP for FotoFest Houston 2018

Viewing Period
March 10 - April 22, 2018

Opening + Conversation
March 10, 11-1pm

For Freedoms is an artist-run initiative, founded in 2015 by artists Eric Gottesman and Hank Willis Thomas to mobilize the arts infrastructure of the United States toward broader civic participation using the tools of political campaigns, activism, and advertising. The Billboard Campaign(2016– ) is an ongoing series of artist-produced billboard installations in public spaces and in art spaces. Co-opting the billboard format—a tool of political advertising—these works invite the viewer to engage critically both with the messages they present and with the medium of political advertising itself.

This billboard was produced in conjunction with the For Freedoms-organized town hall discussion The Artifice of Drawn Borders. It includes an image from a series of photographs by Eric Gottesman. This series, Jordan Is Not A Country, explores the manufactured phenomenon of nationalism in the Middle East. In a desert landscape stands a porous fence with holes, bent supports, and gaps, symbolic of the fragile veneer of nationalistic structures anywhere, and recalling concerns about immigration and citizenship here in the United States.

The words at the top of the image—“Where do we go from here?”—might evoke multiple associations: the words of the migrant confronting such divisive structures; the thoughts of many people today, who wonder about the current status of where we are as a nation; and Paul Gauguin’s inscription on his painting Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are We Going? (1897–98), in the MFA’s collection.

Banner Image
I Love 3W, 2017, installation Marc Newsome curated by Ryan N. Dennis, photo by Alex Barber