Artist Joy Miessi opens a new show next week titled, Do You Know Your Middle? The artist will be featuring a selection of mixed media works focusing on drawings, typography, and writing.
The exhibition takes its name from a phrase repeated by the artists mother as a child, in reference to parting and braiding Miessi’s hair. It’s among these cultural rituals and practices that Miessi draws on in her work and she cites her inspirations as coming everywhere from Congolese shop fronts to community stories.
Miessi has previously said that her British Congolese identity is crucial to her practice, commenting that “My text-based work articulates my experience as a black person in the UK and my journey of understanding origin, race and its intersection within British culture.”
On Do You Know Your Middle? she says, “I’m usually restricted by my own budget on what I can use in that moment of time, but it doesn’t stop me from using what is around me to create that vision. For this exhibition, I’ve worked on wood, cardboard and canvas, I’ve enjoyed the change in medium”.
Speaking on what she hopes visitors will experience on attending the show, she says, “I’d hope for a sense of nostalgia or a connection in some way, even if abstract. Though these pieces are about my life, I like that others can find parts of themselves in the artworks”.
The exhibition runs from 6-27 July at 198 Gallery in Brixton and Miessi will be in conversation with Amrita Dhallu, curatorial assistant at Chisenhale Gallery on the 12 July 6:30-10pm.
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