Ghetto Garniture: Wu Tang Worcester
Ferrin Contemporary | 1315 MASS MoCA Way
August 22 – October 12, 2015
Opening Reception August 22 4-6pm
Beginning August 22, Roberto Lugo will be featured in a solo show, Ghetto Garniture: Wu Tang Worcester, presented by Ferrin Contemporary at 1315 MASS MoCA Way in North Adams.
Lugo explores eclecticism and culture through juxtapositions of graffiti, European decorative arts, and his native Puerto Rican heritage. He creates a hybrid of visual art traditions and stimulates new conversations around cultural tolerance. The show features Lugo’s work created during his artist residency at Project Art in Cummington, Massachusetts.
Lugo was raised in a impoverished Puerto Rican neighborhood of Philadelphia where he was exposed to violence and heavy drug culture from an early age. After finishing high school, he found that honest work alone could not support him, and was faced with selling drugs or getting out. He opted to move to Florida where he worked full time and began taking courses in ceramics at a community college. Having had no formal art training in school before, ceramics, art, and academia opened up a new world for him. He attended the Kansas City Art Institute where he earned his Bachelor’s degree before moving on to Pennsylvania State University where he received his Masters in 2014. Now in a Phd program at Penn State, his thesis project will incorporate his work, history, videos, and activism. Lugo’s activism has taken the forms of fundraising, mentoring kids, graffiti, empty bowl dinners, videos, lectures, and participation in the communities where he has lived. “My experiences as an indigent minority inform my version of Puerto Rican American history.” Lugo said. “With my education in critical theory, art education, art history, and studio art I have developed a studio practice that fluidly communicates with diverse audiences. I bring art to those that do not believe they need to see it and engage in deeper ways of knowing, learning, and thinking.”
There will also be several public events where Lugo will talk about and demonstrate his work and be available for discussion. “We are pleased to offer the opportunity to Roberto Lugo at this stage in his career to build a show from scratch.” said Leslie Ferrin, director of Ferrin Contemporary and partner in Project Art. “His work and process are fully engaged with our regional community as he explores themes of tolerance, immigration, and historic material in area museums and landmarks. Combining his interest in social practice and activism with the decorative arts is an ideal use of the Project Art residency.”
ARTIST RESIDENCY June 20th–Sept.1 Project Art, Cummington MA Roberto Lugo’s Artist Residency is sponsored in part by AMACO, Ceramic Decal Printing, Ferrin Contemporary, John Polak Photography, Mayco, and Sheffield Pottery.
SOLO EXHIBITION Ghetto Garniture: Wu Tang Worcester August 22 through October 12, 2015 Ferrin Contemporary at 1315 MASS MoCA Way, North Adams In this solo installation, Lugo explores eclecticism and culture through juxtapositions of graffiti, European decorative arts, and his native Puerto Rican heritage. He creates a hybrid of visual art traditions and stimulates new conversations around cultural tolerance. The show features Lugo’s work created during his artist residency at Project Art in Cummington, Massachusetts.
OPENING RECEPTION Saturday, August 22, 4–6pm
ARTIST SALON at FERRIN CONTEMPORARY Thursday, August 27, 6–7pm Ferrin Contemporary at 1315 MASS MoCA Way, North Adams Lugo will offer a multi-media presentation in the gallery during DownStreet Art in North Adams.