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Family Visions of a Shared Humanity

John Akomfrah Tropikos 2016 (detail, video still)

John Akomfrah Tropikos 2016 (detail, video still), Pérez Art Museum Miami, purchased with funds provided by PAMM’s Collectors Council © Smoking Dogs Films. Image courtesy Lisson Gallery

Nine leading international video artists on the interconnectedness of humanity at a moment of division

Family Visions of a Shared Humanity

6 November 2021 – 13 February 2022

Lower level 2

Art Gallery of NSW

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Free admission

Guest curated by Franklin Sirmans, the director of the Pérez Art Museum Miami (PAMM), Family: Visions of a Shared Humanity presents an important exhibition of video works by some of the most internationally renowned artists of our time.

Family invokes the humanity of the world as interconnected by shared concerns. When we are all facing attack by both an invisible virus and a highly visible pandemic of social injustice, can we find deeper meaning in the term ‘family’, as it pertains to humanity globally?

This moment, marked in the United States and beyond by a litany of recent murders of Black people, has also seen courageous activism and coalition-building through recognition of the intersectionality of race, gender and disadvantage.

Family brings together an epic suite of powerful works, many never seen before in Australia – by leading artists such as John Akomfrah (Ghana/UK), Garrett Bradley (USA), Stan Douglas (Canada), Theaster Gates (USA), Arthur Jafa (USA), Kahlil Joseph (USA), Isaac Julien (UK), Steve McQueen (UK) and Carrie Mae Weems (USA). Together, these pieces – mostly in the democratic medium of video – open a conversation by asking: how do we see each other?

PAMM Director Franklin Sirmans at Pérez Art Museum Miami

PAMM director Franklin Sirmans at Pérez Art Museum Miami. Photo: Angel Valentin, courtesy Pérez Art Museum Miami

The head and shoulders of a person wearing a black-and-white scarf tied around their head. Their lips are pursed and eyes almost closed.

Theaster Gates Breathing 2010 (video still), Pérez Art Museum Miami © Theaster Gates. Photo: Chris Strong, courtesy Theaster Gates

A person, silhouetted in an open gateway, looks out to the ocean and a rocky cliff in front of them.

Isaac Julien Western Union: small boats (The leopard) 2007 (video still), Art Gallery of New South Wales © Isaac Julien. Image courtesy the artist and Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery 

The head and shoulders of a young person with flowers in their hair, against a cloudy sky.

Carrie Mae Weems May days long forgotten 2002 (video still), Pérez Art Museum Miami © Carrie Mae Weems. Image courtesy the artist and Jack Shainman Gallery, New York

Black-and-white image of a group of young people in the foreground, facing left. Behind them is a young person in a white knee-length, short-sleeved dress, ankle socks and pigtails holding something which flares with light in front of their face. There are buildings and bushes in the background.

Garrett Bradley America 2019 (video still) © Garrett Bradley. Image courtesy the artist and Lisson Gallery

A person in a colourful paisley top plays drums.

Stan Douglas Luanda-Kinshasa 2013 (video still), Pérez Art Museum Miami and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art © Stan Douglas. Image courtesy the artist, Victoria Miro and David Zwirner 

Black-and-white image  on a screen of a young person with their arm resting on a branch-like diagonal object.

Arthur Jafa Love is the message, the message is death 2016 (installation view, Pérez Art Museum Miami, 2018–19), Pérez Art Museum Miami © Arthur Jafa. Photo: Oriol Tarridas

Black-and-white image on a screening of a document headed 'Federal Bureau of Investigation' with redacted sections and annotations.

Steve McQueen End credits 2012–ongoing (installation view, Pérez Art Museum Miami, 2017–18), Pérez Art Museum Miami © Steve McQueen. Photo Studio LHOOQ

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