Miscegenation | LaRissa Rogers

The Bridge announces a new exhibition, Miscegenation by LaRissa Rogers opening in the large windows of the community art gallery March 5, 2021 5:00PM and running through the month. The exhibition will conclude with a performance piece titled My Body Is the Architecture of My Every Ancestor, on March 26, 7:00 PM, Also viewable through the windows of the gallery.  

LaRissa Rogers states, Miscegenation applies identity politics to interrogate narratives of cultural hybridity, further complicating ideas associated with the capaciousness of blackness. Through creating tension between material, image, and text I explore the cultural construction of identity, particularly that of black female subjectivity, as shaped by the experience of diaspora. Using multiple materials to reproduce the same object, notions of authenticity question the mixed-raced body as counterfeit. Originally stemming from the Latasha Harlins Murder that began the 1992 LA riots, oranges become a metaphor for the multilayered erasure of black women throughout time and space. Occasionally stand-ins for my body, oranges are subjected to passive and aggressive forms of violence further implicating the audience, and other times they are used as a method of self-preservation, healing and care.

LaRissa Rogers (b. 1996) is an interdisciplinary artist born in Charlottesville, Va. She holds a BFA in Painting and Printmaking and BIS in International Fashion Buying from Virginia Commonwealth University. She has exhibited work in institutions such as Fields Projects in NY, ICOSA in Austin TX, Welcome Gallery in Charlottesville VA, Target Gallery in Alexandria VA, 1708 Gallery in Richmond VA, Art 29 in Doha Qatar, and the Museum of Contemporary Art in Virginia Beach, VA. In 2019 she was selected as the Summer Studio Program Fellow at Virginia Commonwealth University, and the Graduate Opportunity Fellow by the University of California Los Angeles in 2020. She is the 2021 Sutton-Wallace Family Fellow at New City Arts and is currently pursuing her MFA in New Genres at the University of California Los Angeles.

Rogers’ work looks at the intersections of culture, identity, and embedded forms of colonization expressed through perception and psyche. Combining aspects of memory, history, and personal experience, she delves into what is her blackness by addressing ideas of hybridity, authenticity, and visibility as an Afro-Asian woman. As slavery’s ongoing past continues to inform the present, her work uses materials that reference past histories and recontextualizes them to articulate ideas surrounding labor, safety, healing, resistance, and resilience. Through performance and installation, the body becomes an archive and vessel for collective memory and reimagining, while temporality provides pathways to explore alternative possibilities for black people to exist.

The public can safely visit the large windows of our gallery at 209 Monticello Rd. any time day or night during the month to see the exhibition.

Photo: The Radical Other. Installation. 2019. Photograph taken by Sara Stern.