Marvin Touré: Paranoia’s Midnight

September 7th - October 6th, 2019

Opening reception Saturday, September 7th | 6-9pm

 

haul gallery is pleased to present Paranoia’s Midnight, a solo show by the artist Marvin Touré. Touré created this work after being placed in a full-body 3D scanner. A subsequent eight-inch replica of his likeness was created, with plaster variations. These objects are staged throughout the floor of the gallery. As the viewer moves through the space approaching the miniatures, the plaster covered floor continuously cracks beneath their feet. The more the viewer ventures throughout the installation the more they become implicated in damaging the ever-shifting white floor.

 

Paranoia’s Midnight as a title and a body of work focuses on themes of race and paranoia. Touré’s journey with paranoia has been a life without sure footing; constantly uneasy and forever unbalanced. “Midnight” in this title, according to Touré, reflects the transitional nature of his own paranoia, as it both ends and begins every day. “The title is an affirmation for myself and those who also battle with mental health — paranoia defines your today but it doesn’t have to define your tomorrow.”

 

“To be a Negro in this country and to be relatively conscious is to be in a rage almost all the time.” - James Baldwin

 

Continued from Touré: 

 

This awareness doesn’t always mean rage for me. It never feels like one note, It’s more akin to a symphony of emotional discord. it’s anxiety, hopelessness, and among other things it’s paranoia. I define paranoia, in this context, as a conditioned hyper-awareness. The result of a life colored by color is to exist forever vigilant and aware of any potential threat to your safety on the basis of race. From being singled out for bad behavior in a Mosque while playing with the other nonblack children, to being followed in a Christian bookstore as a teen, to getting pulled over by police on suspicion of grand theft auto as an adult. These experiences, and many others like it, can psychologically condition you to never feel comfortable and always feel like your very presence is in error. In the presence or absence of explicit “proof,” these feelings persist making the collateral damage of daily black life your peace of mind.

 

All day long I think of things but nothing seems to satisfy” - Black Sabbath in Paranoid 

 

Marvin Touré is an Ivorian-American artist who engages with his heritage and urban southern upbringing through his deeply autobiographical practice. Touré’s work has been included in exhibitions at The Hole (2016) in New York City, the PRIZM art fair (2016) in Miami, Florida, Project for Empty Space at Gateway Project Spaces in Newark, New Jersey (2016), the SVA Chelsea Gallery (2016-2017) in New York City, Re: Art Show (2017) in Brooklyn, New York, Smack Mellon (2017-2018) in Brooklyn, New York, and the University of Connecticut-Stamford (2018) in Stamford, Connecticut. In 2014 Marvin received a B.A. in New Media Arts with a minor in Architecture from Southern Polytechnic State University in Marietta, Georgia. In 2016 he received his MFA in Fine Arts from The School of Visual Arts.