The Soap Factory and Obsidian Arts present: Friction Fiction

Opening Reception

February 7, 2015 7-11pm

Gallery Hours


Exhibition Runs

Feb 7 - Mar 8

Friction Fiction


Location: Gallery One

A collaboration between The Soap Factory and Obsidian Arts, Fiction Friction is a survey of contemporary black artists, curated by Roderic Southall, all using the medium of animation to address and contextualize their relationship with the urban landscape.

The Black experience of the urban is an ideal subject for the medium of animation. With each frame adjusted and altered by the hand of the animator, the ability to distort and interpolate the surreal into the actual mirrors the experience of the other as they move through the city. The distancing and alienation of the city are leavened by a playful sense of the absurd, and of the intimate and gentle moments of human interaction that make that life bearable; moments that are themselves mirrored by the recognisable human gestures of hand-made animation.

In this survey of works, selected from a global collection of artists, a central theme is the range and variety of urban commentary and creativity within the medium of animation. Artist by artist, each film demonstrates many different approaches to the process of crafting animation; hand-drawn, collage, oil-paint-on-glass, computer generated imagery. From Tim Potluck’s elegant CGI homage to the romance and regenerative spirit of urban decay to Martine Chartrand’s richly textured re-telling of a folk song to Nina Barrett’s sober and clear insertion of social impact onto the stark urban landscape, drawn in stop motion directly onto the window panes that show her view of Johannesburg. The Friction Fiction exhibition will also feature the US Premier of Terrance Nance’s ‘An Over Simplification of Her Beauty’, a hand-made animated love poem and urban romance.

Each of these artists lands us somewhere between awake and dreaming as they take us on frame-by-frame journey through the urban landscape they created.

Featuring the work of; Tim Portlock (PA), Ron Brown (NYC), Caress Reeves (CA), Terrance X Nance (NYC), Kevin Wideman (IL), Africanus Okokon (RI), Ng’endo Mukii (Kenya), Martine Chartrand (CA), Nina Barnett (IL)

Curated by: Roderic Southall (MN) and Ernest Bryant III (MN)

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