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September 8-11, 2022   Javits Center

Tau Lewis

Opus (The Ovule)

2020

Curator's Statement

Opus (The Ovule) (2020) is part of a series of soft sculptures and environments that define Tau Lewis’ utopian universe called T.A.U.B.I.S. Lewis' works originate in the collection of found materials that map the artist’s close relations and gesture toward cultural signifiers of community and shared belongings. Lewis describes Opus (The Ovule) as “the power source of consciousness” of a fictional realm defined by abundance, safety, and justice. Presented by Night Gallery (Los Angeles), the work conjures the fantastical and the familiar simultaneously, invoking traditions of the imagination.

About the Artist

Tau Lewis employs arduous methods such as hand sewing, carving, and assemblage to build intricate sculptural portraits and quilts. A self-taught artist, her practice is rooted in healing personal, collective, and historical traumas through labor. The materiality of Lewis’ work is often informed by her surrounding environment: she constructs out of found, gathered, and recycled materials from Toronto, New York, and outside of her family's home in Negril, Jamaica. The transformative act of repurposing these materials recalls practices of resourcefulness in diasporic contexts; upcycling is a recuperative act that reclaims both agency and memory. The portraits themselves reference both individuals in Lewis’ community and imagined ancestors.