• Heather Hart: Afrotecture (Re)Collection
    Heather Hart
    Liz Park
    The University at Buffalo Art Galleries, Buffalo
    Sep 16, 2021 to May 21, 2022
    The University at Buffalo Art Galleries

Heather Hart, Sweet Lorraine, 2021, installation view, Heather Hart: Afrotecture (Re)Collection, 2021, University at Buffalo Art Galleries. Courtesy of the artist and Davidson Gallery. Photo: Nando Alvarez-Perez

University at Buffalo Art Galleries (UBAG) presents an exhibition and a catalog of Heather Hart’s new work stemming from her research on the balcony of the Lorraine Motel in Memphis, TN, where Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated in 1968. Examining how historical records and collective memory of the event overlap or don’t, Hart began developing this project with the support of a 2019 Graham Foundation grant. UBAG’s 40-foot tall gallery enables the artist to realize her vision of re-creating the balcony in an interior space. The exhibition includes 3D sketches and models that share the artist’s research and process that reflect how we piece together the bits in a collective building of history from ground up. The project is developed in consultation with faculty from UB School of Architecture and Assembly House 150, a Buffalo nonprofit which runs a career training program in the construction trades.

Heather Hart is a Brooklyn-based artist known for large-scale, interactive, and participatory installations that explore liminal architectural spaces such as rooftops and porches. She was an artist in residence at Sharpe Walentas Studio Program, Joan Mitchell Center, McColl Center of Art + Innovation, Bemis Center for Art, LMCC Workspace, Skowhegan, Hermitage, Fine Arts Work Center, and at the Whitney ISP. Hart received grants from Creative Capital, Joan Mitchell Foundation, Graham Foundation, Harpo Foundation, Jerome Foundation, and NYFA. She has exhibited worldwide including at Kohler Art Center, NCMA, Storm King Art Center, UTSC, Seattle Art Museum, Socrates Sculpture Park, ICA Philadelphia, Art in General, Franconia Sculpture Park, MoMA PS1, Tarble Arts Center, and the Brooklyn Museum. She studied at Cornish College of the Arts in Seattle, Princeton University in New Jersey, and received her master's in fine arts from Rutgers University.

Liz Park is curator at University at Buffalo Art Galleries. She was most recently the associate curator of the 2018 Carnegie International at Carnegie Museum of Art in Pittsburgh. She has curated exhibitions at a wide range of institutions including the Western Front in Vancouver, the Kitchen in New York, the Institute of Contemporary Art in Philadelphia, and Seoul Art Space_Geumcheon. Her writing has been published by Afterall Online, Afterimage, ArtAsiaPacific, Performa Magazine, and Fillip among others. She was a Helena Rubinstein Fellow at the Whitney Independent Study Program in 2011—12 and Whitney-Lauder Curatorial Fellow at ICA Philadelphia in 2013—15.

Charles L. Davis II is a consultant for Afrotecture (Re)Collection. Assistant professor of architectural history and criticism at University of Buffalo, Davis received his doctorate in architecture from the University of Pennsylvania and has an MArch and BPS from University of Buffalo. His academic research examines the integration of race and style theory in modern architectural debates from the late nineteenth to the mid-twentieth century. He is the author of Building Character: The Racial Politics of Modern Architectural Style (University of Pittsburgh, 2019) and coeditor of Diversity and Design: Understanding Hidden Consequences (Routledge, 2015) and Race and Modern Architecture (University of Pittsburgh, 2020).

Dennis Maher is a consultant for Afrotecture (Re)Collection. Through art, architecture, design, and construction, Maher’s practice imagines new possibilities for the built environment. In 2015, he founded ASSEMBLY HOUSE 150, a nonprofit center for art, design, and construction where he directs the SACRA construction skills training program. Maher’s work has been presented at venues internationally, including at the Mattress Factory Art Museum, Pittsburgh, Bi-City Biennale of Architecture and Urbanism, Shenzhen, China, and the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, where he was the 2012–2013 Artist-in-Residence. Maher is currently a clinical assistant professor in the Department of Architecture at University of Buffalo.

Henry Taylor is a consultant for Afrotecture (Re)Collection. He is professor in department of urban and regional planning at University of Buffalo. Taylor’s research focuses on a historical and contemporary analysis of distressed urban neighborhoods, social isolation, and race and class issues among people of color, especially African Americans and Latinx. Within this framework, Taylor’s research also focuses on these issues in Cuba, the Caribbean Islands, and Latin America. Lastly, Taylor is concerned with the redevelopment of shrinking cities and metropolitan cities, with a focus on social, economic and racial justice.

The University at Buffalo (UB), State University of NY (SUNY) is a public research university founded in 1846. The UB Art Galleries, founded in 1994, are dedicated to UB's mission of academic excellence and community service, and serve broad audiences by presenting thought-provoking exhibitions, visiting artists, educational programs, and publications.