Saturday, June 18th marked the highly anticipated opening of SKIN + MASKS, the curatorial debut of Grammy-nominated rapper, author, and activist Vic Mensa. The group exhibition at Kavi Gupta is rooted in a seminal philosophical text by author Frantz Fanon and features works by more than 20 contemporary Black artists from around the world. The opening reception brought together more than 400 attendees, and highlighted the interdisciplinary nature of the exhibition, incorporating a variety of exclusive performances.
During the opening reception of SKIN + MASKS, Kavi Gupta hosted members of an extensive array of communities, evidencing the potent electricity generated by creative, cultural, and generational intersectionality. Chicago’s music scene marveled at Nikko Washington’s roughly layered boxers and Ndidikanma Emefiele’s surreal, dystopian landscape. AFRICOBRA’s Gerald Williams guided Chance The Rapper through the 45 pairs of collaged eyes that center his multicolored pointillist painting. Outside, attendees watched as graffiti artist Slang fluidly rendered a large-scale mural. All the while, the rhythm of Mensa’s DJ set pulsed through the in-and-outdoor spaces.
Video by SoKo Productions.