Two-Person Show featuring Cobi Moules and Cupid Ojala
March 17 – April 23, 2017
Opening Reception, March 17, 7-9pm
1407 Sherwood Ave., Richmond, VA 23220
The Iridian Gallery at Diversity Richmond announces its next exhibit, Rural Fantasies, work by Cobi Moules and Cupid Ojala, March 17 – April 23, 2017. The opening reception is March 17, 7 – 9PM. Reception is free and open to the public. Sponsored in part by Transgender Veterans Support Group – Virginia.
Rural Fantasies is a two-person exhibition featuring the work of New York-based transgendered queer artists, Cobi Moules and Cupid Ojala. Their works, created individually and paired by the Iridian Gallery art selection committee, are both hilarious and poignant, and represent their separate experiences as transgender people.
The artists utilize the absurd (past work includes Cobi’s self-portraits as a member of New Kids on the Block and Cupid’s performances asKelly the Cub Scout) as a construct to portray imagined moments in their lives. There is a profound exploration of the tropes of growing up as an all American boy. The work fulfills an absence in their lives, additionally it is visually clever, intentionally provocative, and an assertive reclamation of self.
A brief artist statement by Cobi Moules:
Explorations of my queer and transgender identity are the focus of my work. The complexity of my individual experience is navigated through documentation, the subtle re-imagining of my physicality, and the creation of fantasy worlds. I playfully explore multifaceted notions of the self, autonomy, and gratification. My work reflects on art historical representation of both portraiture and 19th century American landscape painting. I use these traditions as a way of seeking inclusion; creating a space for personal significance and a queer presence.
A brief artist statement by Cupid Ojala:
Through drawing, performance and bookmaking the work focuses on the visibility of queer bodies, tropes of masculinity and exploration of erotic territory as experienced in a transgendered body. The masculine and erotic emerge as reorganized bodies and symbols of masculinity such as facial hair, body hair, and phallus. Humor and “play” acts as a filter for my observations into the undisclosed aspects of identity and desire to the uninitiated. As a playful critique of social conventions the explorer becomes the voyeur, body hair forms the space of the individual and the male authority figure displays vulnerability.
Each artist will present a lecture at Virginia Commonwealth University’s Student Commons Theater on March 20, 2017 at 10AM. Funded through VCUarts Infusion Inclusion Initiative.
The Iridian Gallery at Diversity Richmond is a 2000 s.f. gallery that fosters LGBTQ+ artists and their community by exhibiting their art, as well as work that relates to their experiences.
The Iridian Gallery at Diversity Richmond, 1407 Sherwood Ave.,
Richmond, VA 23220. www.DiversityRichmond.org.