Kriston Banfield: Selected Works
Bonnie Hopper: Selected Works
Sable Elyse Smith: How We Tell Stories to Children
Amanda Howell Whitehurst: Selected Works
Wa Na Wari
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EXHIBITION: January 13-April 16, 2023. Opening Reception: Saturday, January 14, 6-8pm
Music by DJ Surreal. Refreshments will be served.
Wa Na Wari is proud to present the works of Kriston Banfield, a New York City-based artist from the twin-island of Trinidad and Tobago; Bonnie Hopper, a Seattle-based artist; Sable Elyse Smith, an interdisciplinary artist based in New York; and Amanda Howell Whitehurst, an illustrator from Jacksonville, Florida.
Kriston Banfield is a self-taught artist from the twin-island of Trinidad and Tobago, currently based in New York City. His work is concerned with ideas of community and belonging, often referencing the process of finding one’s sense of place. By drawing heavily on elements of myth and spirituality he seeks to examine lived experiences and to question how social and economic disparities directly police the human experience, more so one’s availability to opportunity, power and stratification. His work takes the form of painting, drawing, sculpture and installation. To date he has participated in a number of self-produced exhibitions over a span of 7 years as part of an artists’ collective in his home territory and has had his work included in the 5th Ghetto Biennale in Port au Prince, Haiti and in the upcoming 19th Asian Biennale 2022 as well as he is a member of the LMCC Artist’s residency cohort of 2022. Artist Talk with Kriston Banfield on Friday, January 20 at 12pm PT via Wa Na Wari’s Facebook Live and YouTube channel.
Bonnie Hopper was born and raised in Seattle, Washington and is one of thirteen children. In 1987 she applied to and was accepted into the advertising art program at Seattle Community College where she studied art for two years. Although art has always played an important role in Bonnie's life, she did not pursue her dream of becoming a professional artist until 2008 when she was commissioned to do a portrait by a friend of the family. In 2016, Bonnie began her association with Onyx Fine Arts Collective in Seattle taking part in the "Truth B Told”exhibition for artists of African descent at the King Street Station where she sold several of her resin works.
Sable Elyse Smith's How We Tell Stories to Children is a single channel video that combines found footage, music clips, and audio of the artist reading with video clips of her father recording himself from prison. Focal points and significant moments seem to always occur just offscreen, or quickly flash away. We are given glimpses of a young man running, of city streets flying past from out a car window, but the video centers on clips of her father recounting events in their shared past, talking into the camera like we are witnessing one half of a conversation, or silently listening to music. At times, it is a personal portrait from loved one to loved one, as when he refers to the artist as “daughter." The viewer is granted access into these private moments in the cell while his story, his message for his daughter, feels just out of reach, but the camera rolls on.
Amanda Howell Whitehurst is a native of Jacksonville, Florida. She is self-taught in illustration, having more than 20 years experience. Her influences are Black women like her and Black women she is inspired by. Amanda loves to show the beauty, strength, and inspiration of Black and Brown women.
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ABOUT THE VENUE
Wa Na Wari was founded by artists Inye Wokoma (Frank and Goldyne’s grandson), Elisheba Johnson, Jill Freidberg and Rachel Kessler.
We work as an Executive Leadership Cohort in which leadership is shared. We view our role as that of the convener. The majority of our programming is initiated by the community; the cohort provides the space, infrastructure, and resources.