February 16, 2022
A new order of artists create cross-boundaries, merging visual arts, movement, sound, tribal and performative practices. Known for its adventurous programming, the Park Avenue Armory will tap into the multi-lingual, interdisciplinary practice expressed by Rashaad Newsome from February 16 through March 6 in what could well be an unforgettable mind-bending experience.
Assembly -- deemed a multi-experiential work by Rashaad Newsome -- morphs the Wade Thompson Drill Hall into a landscaped "collage of sculptures and projected images of Black and Black Queer culture, fasion, West African sculptures, textiles and masks with 19th century ebony Dutch style frame."
Being appears in the next room functioning as a digital griot (storyteller) who intersects with the audience by generating poetry and guiding everyone in reflective practices, movement and dialogue.
For those who crave an even deeper immersion into this work, Being will lead daily, participatory workshops opening minds to decolonization through historical information, critical thinking, dance, storytelling, and mindfulness meditation.
Throughout the season, audiences will come in contact with the Being's recitation of poetry based on queer poet Dazie Rustin Grego-Sykes bacekd by a soundscape composed by Robert Aki Aubrey Lowe.
Excitingly, In the evening, performances feature an international collective of dancers, singers, musicians, and MCs that celebrate the many facets of vogue culture in our world.
Newsome says of his commission: “Assembly will offer audiences a new way of thinking about rights, liberty, and humanity, using the so rarely explored paradox of the Black experience and the advancement of technology as a jumping-off point."
EYE ON THE ARTS, NY -- Celia Ipiotis