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Open Air: Artist Percy King + Dexter Wimberly
About This Program
In this episode of Open Air, curator Dexter Wimberly speaks with mixed-media artist Percy King whose work is featured among 24 others in the Gantt Center's first biennial Visual Vanguard: An Exhibition of Black Carolina Artists. King's three-dimensional wood portraiture, a method of assembly he's deemed the "Shaolin wood technique," is as unique as his path from The Ohio State to visual art.
How To Participate
This free virtual program will be streamed on the Gantt Center's official YouTube channel.
About Open Air
Open Air is a monthly series of virtual studio visits and intimate conversations with Black artists across the United States. Historically, African-American artists have been compelled to make their own way within the art world, challenging traditional ideas of cultural representation and creating their own systems of merit, criticality and reward outside of the mainstream. Join us as we get a behind-the-scenes look at exciting new art as it's being created, while connecting the makers' works to some of the most pressing issues of our times.
About The Artist
Percy C. King creates three-dimensional works from various mediums using skills he acquired as a carpenter and furniture maker. After digitizing an image from a subject's photograph, King's "Shaolin wood technique" begins with cutting strips of plywood and Masonite and then blending and layering the materials to create a unique style of mixed-media portraiture art. Each portrait is created to highlight the raw beauty of the wood and materials used.
Growing up in Columbus, Ohio, King attended an arts-based elementary school, played defensive back for The Ohio State Buckeyes from 1995 to 2000, graduating with a BA in Communications, and then pursued a brief career in the NFL with the Kansas City Chiefs.
The mixed-media artist has depicted everyday African-Americans; entertainers; political figures, including President Barack Obama; and other creatives. His portrait of Langston Hughes was among the works featured in I, Too, Sing America: The Harlem Renaissance at 100 (2018-2019), the Columbus Museum of Art's award-winning exhibition curated by scholar Wil Haygood. King has six works in the Columbus Museum of Art permanent collection.
About The Host
Dexter Wimberly is an independent curator and entrepreneur who has organized exhibitions and developed programs with galleries and institutions throughout the world including The Third Line in Dubai; Contemporary Art Museum CAM Raleigh in North Carolina; The Museum of the African Diaspora (MoAD) in San Francisco; Koki Arts in Tokyo; and the Museum of Arts and Design in New York City. His exhibitions have been reviewed and featured in publications including The New York Times, Artforum, and Hyperallergic; and have received support from The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. Wimberly has also served as Director of Strategic Planning at Independent Curators International in New York City.
Prior to his curatorial career, Wimberly was the managing partner and CEO of the advertising agency, August Bishop, representing a diverse array of clients, including Adidas, The Coca-Cola Company and, HBO. Wimberly is a Senior Critic at New York Academy of Art. He is also the founder of ART WORLD CONFERENCE, a business and financial literacy conference for visual artists. He and ART WORLD CONFERENCE co-organizer, Heather Bhandari were recently listed in the Observer's "Arts Power 50: Changemakers Shaping the Art World in 2019.”