Culture and Circumstance

Diego Rivera crossed cultural lines: Mexican and American, artist and activist, creator and observer. His 1931 mural The Making of a Fresco Showing the Building of a City, in his namesake art-school gallery, deliberately plays visual tricks, depicting painters in the act of creating a fresco. Look carefully to find Mr. Frida Kahlo himself, sitting on a bit of painted scaffolding and surveying his work with his back to the viewer. It’s a great backdrop to “Transcultural Circumstances,” a new show that deals with the tensions inherent in cultural cross-pollination. Artists Cat U-Thasoonthorn, Douglas Yee, and Pallavi Govindnathan integrate their personal experiences in straddling cultures. Govindnathan uses her drawings, photography, and video to question the prejudice often entrenched in religion, with a particular focus on current events in India, while U-Thasoonthorn reanimates desolate urban space with neon and incandescent light in her sculptures and installation art. Round out your own cultural investigations at the Aug. 30 opening when Amanda Lacro and Kelsi Auday embody the themes of the show in dance, and the Willard Lacro Quartet provides a live jazz soundtrack.
Aug. 29-Sept. 2, 9 a.m., 2011

 
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