Birds of a Feather
The year 2016 saw the end of many things, and for women the events of the November election marked the end of hope as we watched the glass ceiling re-solidify with stale inevitability. Suddenly January 20th was no longer to be a day of celebration but was transformed overnight into the country’s “best by” date. Birds of a Feather is a curatorial response to our thoughts and emotions surrounding recent political events with a group exhibition revolving around a symbol of peace, hope and freedom.
As the proverb goes: birds of a feather, flock together. This idiom perhaps was never more appropriately used than when discussing the geographical ideological division of the country during the course of the 2016 presidential election. New York solidly established in the country’s east coast parentheses even furthers the proof of this age-old adage, for if one thing is true it’s that New Yorkers stick together. This exhibition pays homage to this solidarity in a candid collection of bird imagery. The significance of some photographs in this reactionary context is quite transparent: a finch with wings outstretched invokes feelings of peace, hope and promise for things yet to come. For other works, the caged birds depicted take on a more poetic meaning as cages become metaphors for the glass ceiling that so recently showed signs of shattering.
Some call it the Big Apple, recently it has been called a “cultural bubble,” but to those of us who are lucky enough to call it home, New York is here for you. To those who feel shoved aside due to the recent political climate, know that this is your flock and we welcome you with open wings.
LEFT TO RIGHT:
Michael Kenna, Thirty Six Birds, Isle of Skye, 2005
Cig Harvey, Goldfinch, St. Petersburg, Russia, 2014
Elijah Gowin, Birds Over Village, 2002