Leslie Hewitt at Dia Bridgehampton
POSTED ON: July 20, 2022
A new installation by artist Leslie Hewitt A’00, associate professor in the School of Art, is currently on view at Dia Bridgehampton on the East End of Long Island. The exhibition explores light, sound, and inertia through a body of work conceived by Hewitt as an array of low-profile sculptures, laterally distributed within and outside the gallery, as well as a diagrammatic score composed with artist Jamal Cyrus. In conjunction with the exhibition, Hewitt and Cyrus invited artists Rashida Bumbray, Jason Moran, and Immanuel Wilkins to interpret the score at venues in New York City and on Long Island throughout the yearlong run of the show.
The installation engages histories of the site and its surrounding geographies, for which Hewitt draws on the scholarship of Tiffany Lethabo King's theorization of shoals—sites where land and sea have met and re-formed each other—as a locus of resistance to settlers' conquest and worldview. “With remarkable restraint,” says Jessica Morgan, Dia's Nathalie de Gunzburg Director, “Hewitt simultaneously evokes the vastness of the landscape as well as the ways in which histories are made through the ebb and flow of day-to-day life over time.”
In addition to exhibiting on Long Island, Hewitt is participating this fall in A Movement in Every Direction: Legacies of the Great Migration, a group show at the Baltimore Museum of Art. The exhibition, opening on October 30, explores the impacts of the Great Migration—the dispersal of more than six million African Americans who left the South between 1915 and 1970—through newly commissioned works across media by 12 artists. The list of featured artists includes, along with Hewitt, Torkwase Dyson, who served as The Cooper Union’s Spring 2019 Robert Gwathmey Chair in Architecture and Art.
Earlier this year, Hewitt’s work was also celebrated as part of “The Artist's Eye” series at Douglas Hyde Gallery in Dublin, Ireland. The series asks the gallery's exhibiting artists to invite an artist of influence to present work in an adjoining gallery, thereby acknowledging the crucial role that artistic influence plays in creative practices.
As part of the spring 2022 installment of this series, Cooper School of Art alumnus Eric N. Mack A’10 invited Hewitt to participate. The two artists first met at The Studio Museum in Harlem’s open studios in 2008 before Mack, then a student, studied with Hewitt when she joined Cooper as a visiting artist for a semester in 2009.
Leslie Hewitt at Dia Bridgehampton runs through June 4, 2023. A Movement in Every Direction: Legacies of the Great Migration will be view at the Baltimore Museum of Art from October 30, 2022 to January 29, 2023.