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Marginalized and Mythological: Shanequa Gay’s Disruption of the Pastoral Landscape

January 12 @ 10:00 am - 4:30 pm

|Recurring Event (See all)

An event every week that begins at 10:00am on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, repeating indefinitely

One event on January 11, 2018 at 5:00pm

An event every week that begins at 10:00am on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, repeating until February 17, 2018


Influenced by her research of printed fabric and its history, Shanequa Gay’s designs reveal her interest in the Civil Rights era, Southern vernacular and current issues faced by African Americans. Gay’s thematic approach to contemporary concerns rendered through genre scenes and mythological figures reflects her study of traditional African patterns and the drawings of 18th and 19th-century artisans such as Jean Baptiste Huet, employed by the Oberkampf factory in Jouy-en-Josas, France who produced the pastoral genre now commonly known as Toile de Jouy or toile. A familiar element within her work, the deertaur – a mythological creature featuring the head of a deer and the body of a man speaks to the ‘hunted’ status of the African American male.

Shanequa Gay (b. 1977) is a native of Atlanta, Georgia where she continues to live and work. She holds a BFA in Painting from the Savannah College of Art Design (2015) and is currently a candidate for an MFA at Georgia State University.

The premiere of this work in Augusta and the artist’s research of the city’s history as a 19th-century leader in the textile industry contributes to her visual narrative and connects to the global history of cotton as a commodity. Further anchoring it to the history of the South, she provides a greater understanding of the role of played by all levels of society in its production-from farm to factory-and its long-lasting consequences.

Following the Department of Art and Design’s tradition, as the first exhibiting artist of the calendar year, Ms. Gay will serve as the juror for the Byrd Gallery’s annual student exhibition open to all Augusta University students. She will also be in residence with the Department beginning January 8th and will work with current students and recent alumni to produce the exhibition’s featured wall mural.


January 12
10:00 am - 4:30 pm
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