Art News: Sarah Frost ‘Arsenal’ Exhibit and Kara Walker ‘Dust Jackets for the Niggerati-and Supporting Dissertations’

26 Apr


Sarah Frost’s first solo exhibition Arsenal is currently on show at PPOW Gallery in New York City. Frost recently discovered and focused her attention on a community of boys who self-publish instructional YouTube videos for making paper guns.

Learning this craft, Frost has amassed a comprehensive arsenal – from handguns to elaborate Halo-inspired assault rifles – to create a monumental installation. In its variety of form and configuration, including suspended objects, floor works, ammunition piles and other accessories, Arsenal reveals the intensity of the boys’ pursuit, Frost’s curiosity about it and her obsessive fascination with object-making.

Shown only once before at the Great Rivers Biennial 2010 exhibition at the Contemporary Art Museum Saint Louis, Arsenal extends Frost’s interest in constructing immersive environments. Arsenal runs through May 14, 2011.


Kara Walker’s drawings for Dust Jackets for the Niggerati-and Supporting Dissertations is currently being exhibited at Sikkema Jenkins & Co. in New York City through June 4, 2011.

This body of work grew out of the artist’s search for understanding of the way that power asserts itself in interpersonal and geopolitical spheres. As she embarked on this quest the figural elements began to disappear from her work. Now, they emerge again in what Walker describes as a “giddy embrace” of the figural and the narrative.

The Great Negro Heroine, 2011

The works explore themes of transition and migration that run throughout the African American experience in the 20th century. There is a cycle of destruction and renewal that is embodied in the move from country to city, as well as the destruction of an “old” Black identity and the emergence of a “New Negro” identity.

Louise Beavers, 2010

Thinking metaphorically about this move from rural to urban environment, the works can be read almost as a comic book or storyboard. There is a narrative present – both explicit and implied –about the constant fluctuation of identity.

Changing Spots with a Leopard (another Jazz aficionado), 2010

Pastorale, 2010

untitled, 2011

And Encourages the Youth, 2011

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