November 10: Celebrated artist Jacolby Satterwhite’s dream-like virtual worlds arrive at CAM in first major solo exhibition
Celebrated artist Jacolby Satterwhite’s dream-like virtual worlds arrive at CAM in first major solo exhibition Jacolby Satterwhite, We Are In Hell When We Hurt Each Other, 2020. HD digital video. Courtesy the artist and Mitchell-Innes & Nash, New York. November 10, 2022 (St. Louis, MO) - The Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis (CAM) presents the first major survey of Jacolby Satterwhite’s wide-ranging practice in a museum-wide exhibition next spring. An innovator in the fields of 3D-animation and performance art, Satterwhite explores and complicates the boundaries between human and digital experience in a series of captivating multimedia works. This exhibition traces more than ten years of Satterwhite’s creative output, including 3D-animated films, immersive video installations, paintings, sculptures, and new media pieces. Jacolby Satterwhite: Spirits Roaming on the Earth, will be on view at CAM from March 10 through August 13, 2023.
Mapping the artist’s extraordinary creative trajectory, this exhibition explores a decade of Satterwhite’s conceptual practice across multiple materials, genres, and modes of thinking. His work frequently draws on a broad set of personal and cultural influences that include modernism, video gaming, queer theory, mythology, and Black culture. Many of these works also incorporate references to home and family life, especially to the artist’s late mother, Patricia Satterwhite, a prolific artist, writer, and musician in her own right. With these creative inputs, Satterwhite builds digital worlds of resilience and reinvention, in which virtual space becomes a new frontier for queer experience and self-expression. His intricately detailed animations and live-action films of real and imagined spaces— populated by voguing avatars of Satterwhite and his friends—serve as the stage for the artist’s surreal and poetic world-building.
“Jacolby Satterwhite is an extraordinary innovator in the digital art world,” said Executive Director Lisa Melandri. “We are so excited to share his groundbreaking works at CAM. Jacolby is a visionary thinker whose environments and exhibitions exist as their own worlds. We can’t wait to invite CAM’s visitors into his world next spring.” In addition to exploring the artist’s video installations, sculptures, and multimedia works—which will span the entirety of the museum—visitors will be invited to take part in an immersive virtual reality experience created by Satterwhite. The exhibition will also be accompanied by the published monograph Jacolby Satterwhite: How lovly is me being as I am, edited by Elizabeth Chodos and Andrew Durbin with narration by Sasha Bonét; essays by Malik Gaines, Jane Ursula Harris, and Legacy Russell; an interview with the artist by Kimberly Drew; and book design by Sonia Yoon.
The exhibition is generously supported in part by the Whitaker Foundation, the Ferring Family Foundation, Hedy Fischer and Randy Shull, and Bernard I. Lumpkin and Carmine D. Boccuzzi.
Jacolby Satterwhite: Spirits Roaming on the Earth is organized by the Miller Institute for Contemporary Art at Carnegie Mellon University and curated by Elizabeth Chodos, Director. The Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis exhibition is organized by Wassan Al-Khudhairi, Chief Curator.
Jacolby Satterwhite (b. 1986, Columbia, South Carolina; lives and works in Brooklyn) received his BFA from the Maryland Institute College of Arts, Baltimore, and his MFA from the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia. Satterwhite’s work has been presented in numerous exhibitions and festivals internationally, including most recently at the Lincoln Center for Performing Arts, New York (2022); Miller Institute for Contemporary Art at Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh (2021); Haus der Kunst, Munich (2021); the Gwangju Biennale, Gwangju (2021); the Wexner Center for the Arts, Columbus, Ohio (2021); The Fabric Workshop and Museum, Philadelphia (2019); Pioneer Works, New York (2019); the Whitechapel Gallery, London (2019); the Museum of Modern Art, New York (2019); the Minneapolis Institute of Art (2019); the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago (2018); La Fondation Louis Vuitton, Paris (2018); the New Museum, New York (2017); the Public Art Fund, New York (2017); the San Francisco Museum of Art (2017); and the Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia (2017). He was awarded the United States Artist Francie Bishop Good & David Horvitz Fellowship in 2016. His work is included in the collections of the Museum of Contemporary Art Kiasma, Helsinki; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Studio Museum in Harlem, New York; and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, among others. Satterwhite has collaborated with several musicians, including Solange Knowles on her visual album When I Get Home (2019) and Perfume Genius on his album Ugly Season (2022).
About the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis The Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis creates meaningful engagement with the most relevant and innovative art being made today. Founded by civic and cultural leaders in 1980, the Museum transformed from a small gallery into an internationally recognized arts institution, now permanently housed in a flexible, open, and inviting building designed by renowned American architect Brad Cloepfil. CAM’s distinct architecture reflects the organization’s values and supports a dynamic range of exhibitions, public programs, educational initiatives, and community collaborations. The only museum in the region solely dedicated to contemporary art, CAM is one of the preeminent non-collecting institutions of its kind in the United States. We are a site for discovery, a welcoming space, free and open to all. For more information, visit camstl.org.