Friday, March 22, 2019

'Iron Heavens'

Nari Ward has an impeccable approach to art. “Nari Ward: We the People,” comprises more than thirty paintings, sculptures, installations, and videos.The curatorial aspects of Ward’s exhibitions are deeply influenced by his innovative ideas and research. Ward managed to look into America’s history and curate his art to capture people’s ideas and feelings of the real world. The artworks and objects are developed intentionally to allow room for interpretations. The exhibitions are organized neatly and artifacts arranged properly for easier recognition by viewers. The chosen positions of the arts and installations are such that they attract people’s attention, which is an indication of excellent curating skills. The curatorial premises of Ward’s exhibition play a vital role in passing information to the public.The salient message passed by “We the People” artwork borrows its essence from America’s constitution preamble. The word “we” in the artwork therefore represents everyone under the Constitution's protection. Nari Ward uses his art to demonstrate the impacts of gentrification on democratization in the United States. Ward used “Iron Heavens” as a visualization to create a sky from a combination of pans. Bats and pans in “Iron Heavens” symbolize violence with the imagery borrowed from ancient traditions. Forms such as sculptures and architecture, along with language, may have been used to express power, identity and other factors that form the basis of people’s sense of belonging. He also addresses social issues affecting Americans through his curators’ creativity and innovation.


  1. I thought that your writing was clear and organized well. For the most part the economy of your sentences all held new ideas or reinforced your previous ideas without being redundant.
    Your opening sentence feels misplaced however. I’d say cut it or place it someplace else and open with the second sentence.
    I think, especially for such short reviews, it is good to focus on one piece as the example of the show or your thesis. Which you did, and while I think you did a good job describing Iron Heavens I think in this case describing briefly other pieces could be beneficial. Because the curation of the show was something you were particularly interested in, I think moving into the discussion of the piece earlier in the review as well describing a few other pieces would help. Especially in the context of what is near or around Iron Heavens. How did the curatorial decisions of that space affect the hurt/help the piece?

  2. I appreciate your distinct focus on the curation of the show and how that emphasizes and embodies Ward’s work. I also appreciate that you engage in the title of the show “We the People” and the historical American reference it holds. I believe he is speaking about and for all of us as people - and in many cases, for those who may have been forgotten or overlooked. The piece itself was very strong and striking in person and felt to me as though it was collaged from a number of people lives with different stories represented by each panel of metal and emotions represented by each bat laying beneath them.