All in Columns

Keep Swimming

The task at hand is absurd—an entire forest needs to be dismantled, the bulk of three towns. We watch the quiet human forms in white hazmat suits, masks obscuring their faces, bent over their work filling ridiculously tiny white plastic bags with debris, sealed up with heavy blue tape laid out in rows. They are working near a small white tent with the word “asbestos'“ on it and move so deliberately through the ash that they appear to be studying the dangerous inflammable objects they have been sent to retrieve.

Kathleen Bomani + Zoé Samudzi

I’m new to the world of the archive, a world where you dig through text and images in an attempt to excavate some new or previously rejected truth. Kathleen Bomani is not. Our work became entwined with one another's through our shared attempts to find answers to questions about Germany that history and relationships to communities have guided us towards. And also questions we didn’t know to ask.

Noise + Thirst

Noise + Thirst is a video installation by Leila Weefur. It presents Blackness as an inhabitant of the space between noise & silence and thirst & satisfaction. The accompanying sound collage, a gestalt of Black masculinity, asks how closely must we scrutinize our Blackness to bear witness to a naturally occurring contrast?

Getting Closer

It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to state we’ve an obsession with (and aversion to) intimacy. My own curiosity emerges from an admittedly unsettled place, the unsettled place within which formative knowing and loving of my sexual self emerged: through non-platonic interactions with (and, early on, unrequited desire for) white men.

Hawaiian

It is not called a “Hawaiian shirt” in Hawaii. 

In stereotype, folklore, and the Oriental Trading catalog, the adjective “Hawaiian” evokes a place separate from reality. America’s constant backyard luau. Consequently, “Hawaiian” shirts are for retirees, golfers, slackers, and mainland denizens of Vacationland.

Interview with Sam Vernon

The things that I care about have shifted over the years. I think that there's something about the blackberry that's very elegant. But it can also leave a stain, you know, it can leave traces of what it was after it's already been consumed, and I think that that's all that we can really ask for as creators, is that after we're gone, that there's something left of us.

Got Next

I saw my first WNBA game in the summer of 1997 at The Forum in Inglewood. My family drove from Bakersfield to see the Los Angeles Sparks in our Dodge Caravan with dual sliding doors and a trademarked color only a seventh grader could remember: teal-island-satin glow.

Interview with Elena Gross

I feel like my whole life I’ve been reconstructing my body. I’ve had all these aspirational fantasies about who I want to be, and who I want to look like, and how I want to be perceived. But deconstructing that has felt like realizing that who I want to be/look like/be perceived as is not how I am being perceived. So, I’m instead trying to mold myself more into the person I actually am.

Opposing Energies

Maybe that’s why I love sports so much. The time, space—even the goals are set—and I am free to move as efficiently or voraciously within them as I want, or can. In life, I find restraints comforting. Without them, I tend to get overwhelmed, or distracted.

Seeing is Believing

Forgoing fear of risking rhetorical and political self-ghettoization, Black seeing becomes an act of historical correction as revision: a countering of falsehoods and reasserting of truths as/when it presents a negotiation of public imagination(s) and a construction of gazes in service of a desire for justice.

Chambray

According to the anthropologists Daniel Miller and Sophie Woodward, in their book, Global Denim, “On any given day, nearly half the world’s population is in jeans.” It’s almost impossible to tackle all the meanings of such a popular fabric. So allow me to focus on it’s companion, it’s piggy-backer, the oxpecker bird riding its zebra: the chambray shirt.