Artists Moses Ros, Evan Bishop, and Alexis Mendoza reveal site-specific large-scale paper art installations in the windows of Fordham Plaza through a collaboration between the New York City Department of Transportation and nonprofit Chashama. The exhibition, titled BLACK LIVES/BLACK MATTERS was curated by Laura James and will be on view at the plaza outside the Metro North Fordham Station at 1 Fordham Plaza through November 30th, 2020.
Black Lives/Black Matters is an installation that celebrates the worldwide BLM movement and acknowledges this unique moment in our nation’s history, where issues of racism are being brought out into the open. For the fourth presentation in this series, the three selected artists will use paper as their main medium to create a site-specific window installation.
Creating constantly during the pandemic, Bronx based artist Moses Ros has been included in several virtual and gallery exhibitions over the past few months, from adding a design to the impromptu plywood outdoor art galleries in Soho to displaying new work in the windows at Harlem’s Sugar Hill Children’s Museum Ros is determined to spread his message of love, hope, and peace. Ros’ installation, LOVE SUPREME, is meant to evoke a high-end boutique shop display; but instead of your typical labels, Ros imagines a sort of logo for Black Lives Matter. Hoping that viewers pick up on the irony, the artwork is also inscribed with the words, “It is a luxury to live without fear in America.”
Bronx native Evan Bishop has also been active during the pandemic and was one of the principal artists to work on the Black Lives Matter street mural near Yonkers’ City Hall. In this presentation, Bishop reprises old characters he created in the 80s, the “BigHeadz,” caricatures of the artist, and his childhood friends. The piece consists of 9 colorfully painted “BigHeadz” each holding a balloon, together spelling out the word COMMUNITY. Bishop’s intention is to celebrate the young people of color in the Fordham area and to share his characters of familiar faces to reinforce positive imagery with another generation of children.
Finally, Alexis Mendoza’s huge installation occupies the windows facing Fordham Plaza. Although his piece is rendered in Mendoza’s typical abstract expressionism, the imagery in “Black Lives, Black Soil, Black Souls” also seems familiar, and a tree can be made out if you look long enough. Mendoza’s pallet, consisting of traditional African liberation colors, black, red, yellow, and green, and the brown foreground which includes actual soil from Africa, also gives a feeling of comfort.
In seemingly uncertain times, we are happy to add a bit of artistic color and happiness to Fordham Road.