Saturday February 5th, 2022, from 4pm to 7pm, TONE invites you to bear witness to two extremely unique and unapologetically Black voices in our Black visual arts community.

You Can Dance Underwater and Not Get Wet, a solo exhibition by Kevin Brisco Jr., will hang in the Perry Gallery. Kevin Brisco Jr. was raised in Memphis, TN. His work is concerned with issues of place and representation, more specifically how the two inform one another – the slippage between background and figure in painting, pop culture, and daily life; as well as the dubious nature of “home” for African Americans living in the southern U.S. His work takes the form of painting, sculpture, and performance.

Kevin Brisco Jr. has this to say about You Can Dance Underwater and Not Get Wet;

This show is an exploration of dance as a means of performance, escape, retreat, and rebellion. The title comes from the lyrics of Aqua Boogie, in which George Clinton croons:

“​​with the rhythm that makes you dance through what we have to live through,

you can dance underwater and not get wet

The lyrics perfectly describe the thick and perilous political space that Black people have to move through with a rhythm so graceful as to not allow those fraught surroundings to get on them. The statement also evokes the “underwater” space of black post trans-atlantic life – our ancestors lost at sea, newly rising seas and climate racism, as well as the addages “sink or swim”, “drip or drown” so on and so forth.

Dance is important. More so social dance. A space we have been denied for the past year and a half due to the pandemic. In this work I wish to bring a permanency to the ephemeral moments of connection, of happiness, of joy that are so fleeting but so thoroughly felt on the dance floor.

Ecce Homo (Behold a Man), a solo exhibition by Rahn Marion will hang in the Mitchell gallery. Rahn Marion is a painter, liturgical artist, sculptor, and installation designer. Rahn’s work reimagines ancient stories and mythologies through the black male figure, drawing references from visionary art traditions, medieval composition, and folklore.

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