Harmonia Rosales: Master Narrative
Dates: August 18 – December 2, 2023
Location: Spelman College Museum of Fine Art, Atlanta, GA
“[I]f one could make a people lose touch with their capacity to create, lose sight of their will and their power to make art, then the work of subjugation, of colonization, is complete. Such work can be undone only by acts of concrete reclamation.” -bell hooks, Art on My Mind, 1995
Cultural reclamation permeates Harmonia Rosales: Master Narrative, an exhibition of twenty paintings and a large scale sculptural installation by the Los Angeles-based Afro-Cuban American artist Harmonia Rosales who seamlessly entwines the tales and characters of the Yorùbá religion, Greco-Roman mythology, and Christianity with the canonical works and artistic techniques of European Old Masters. Master Narrative opens at Spelman College Museum of Fine Art on Friday, August 18, following its presentation at Memphis Brooks Museum of Art.
The installation in this exhibition is Rosales’s first foray into sculpture and depicts her own version of Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel ceiling stretched across the hull of an overturned slave ship that hovers above the viewer. Through her visual storytelling, Rosales presents the notion of human and cultural survival on her own terms—one that highlights the beauty and strength of Black people, particularly women, while touching upon grand narratives of creation, tragedy, survival, and transcendence.“We are fortunate to have Harmonia Rosales’ first traveling solo museum exhibition at Spelman College Museum of Fine Art. Rosales’ work confronts the concept of a master narrative through imagery that is both beautiful and challenging. Her masterfully-rendered paintings and a large-scale installation will engage AUC students and the general public,” said Executive Director Liz Andrews.
Harmonia Rosales: Master Narrative is accompanied by an exhibition catalogue, the first monograph for the artist, published by Paul Holberton Press. The exhibition opens to the public on August 18.
About Harmonia Rosales
Harmonia Rosales (b. 1984, Chicago, Illinois) is an Afro-Cuban American artist currently based in Los Angeles, California. Her exquisite canvases navigate and question received narratives from ancient myths, Biblical stories, classical antiquity, and Afro-Cuban culture, while challenging Eurocentric perceptions of beauty. Her work has been shown in various group and solo exhibitions including Femme Touch(2020) at the Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh, Miss Education: Reclaiming Our Identity (2020) at the Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Art in Brooklyn, and most recently Harmonia Rosales: Entwined(2022) at the Art, Architecture & Design Museum at the University of California, Santa Barbara.
Harmonia Rosales: Master Narrativeis organized by the Memphis Brooks Museum of Art, in collaboration with the Art, Design & Architecture Museum at UC Santa Barbara.To learn more, please visit harmoniarosales.art or @honeiee on social media