The 5x5 Project 2014 was the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities’ new temporary public art biennial. DCCAH selected five contemporary art curators to select and work with five artists to develop and present exciting temporary art works in public spaces in the Fall of 2014. The resulting twenty-five projects served to activate and enliven publicly accessible spaces and add an ephemeral layer of creativity and artistic expression to neighborhoods across the District.
Working together with San Francisco-based curator Justine Topfer, we conceived of (home)land, an exploration of national and personal identity:
There are now approximately 220 million people who live in countries that aren’t their own, a population that could represent the fifth-largest nation on earth. This band of global wanderers may not have a single place they call home, yet in exchange for the rootedness that others are granted, they have the ability–as do many artists–to perceive things with the acuteness of an outsider’s eye.
(home)land features the works of artists Marley Dawson, Abigail DeVille, Kota Ezawa, Sanaz Mazinani and Soda_Jerk. Currently based in the US, collectively they are connected to such diverse countries as Germany, Japan, Australia, Iran and Canada. (home)land grapples with the relationship between self and place in a world of transitory identities and contested geographies. Within the context of America’s political homeland, Washington, DC, this exhibition excavates the idea of a homeland — no longer simply one’s native land — rather a rich plurality of associations and ideas of belonging, alienation, histories and memories.
^ Abigail Deville, Installation view of Dark Day, Ungovernable: 2012 New Museum Triennial
^ Sanaz Mazinani, 2014 U.S.A.I.R.A.N
^ Kota Ezawa, Hand Vote, 2012 Vancouver Art Gallery Offsite
^ Marley Dawson, 2014 Circle Work (rocket assist 37” / 37”, interlocking)
^ Soda_Jerk, excerpt from Terror Nullius (clip from Picnic at Hanging Rock)