To celebrate Senga Nengudi’s exhibition at Sprüth Magers, Los Angeles, the gallery organized a two-part online event that took place on Thursday, December 10 and Friday, December 11, 2020.
On Thursday, December 10, a screening of Barbara McCullough’s groundbreaking experimental film Shopping Bag Spirits and Freeway Fetishes: Reflections on Ritual Space (1981, 60 min.), was made available to stream on Vimeo. The film, which explores the importance of ritual and ceremony in the lives and work of numerous Black creative figures, captures Senga Nengudi’s performance Ceremony for Freeway Fets (1978) along with works and words by artists Houston Conwill, David Hammons and Betye Saar and poets Kamau Daaood and Kenneth Severin, among others.
On Friday, December 11 over Zoom, Senga Nengudi, Barbara McCullough and Naima J. Keith, LACMA’s Vice President of Education and Public Programs, discussed Nengudi and McCullough’s past collaborations and current approaches to ritual, sound and art making. The conversation, a recording of which is available above, opened with a rare broadcast of Nengudi’s 1988 radio work, “Double Think Bulemia: Mouth to Mouth, Conversations on Being.” Featuring the voices of past collaborators and fellow Black artists—including Charles Abramson, Carol Blank, John Outterbridge, Sun Ra, Cecil Taylor and Kaylynn Sullivan Twotrees—the work explores the nature of creativity and was accompanied by a slideshow illustrating the participants’ voices and work.
Click here to visit the online edition of Senga Nengudi’s exhibition, which presented two of the artist’s large-scale installations, including Bulemia (1988/2018).