Veronica Jackson - "The Burden of Invisibility"
FEBRUARY 1, 2019 - FEBRUARY 22, 2019
ARTIST TALK: FIRST FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 1ST 6:30PM - STUDIO 109
Veronica Jackson makes connections across art, architecture, and design as compiled in her multi-decade portfolio in interpretive exhibition and communication design. She honed her conceptual and practical skills by working on culturally significant and historically prominent projects. Examples range from African Voices at the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of Natural History to Discovering the Civil War at the National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, DC.
Jackson brings a constellation of capabilities to each endeavor: from communicating to diverse audiences to creating inviting and engaging experiences that promote discovery. She is also a dedicated proponent for intellectual accessibility in the visual arts. Jackson holds firm that once exposed to it, art is a transformative experience.
With the intent to record, interpret, and make aware the impact visual culture has on our daily lives, Jackson received a MA in Visual and Critical Studies from California College of the Arts, San Francisco. During her tenure at CCA her work examined identity, agency, and empowerment as performed by African American women in the visual landscape. Her current emphasis—a text based visual art and installation practice—critically elucidates the visualization of gender and race in America, with a special focus on the portrayal, perception, and legacy of black women in popular media both past and present.
My work is autobiographical and stems from the position of an African American woman marking space. I have a multidisciplinary visual art practice based on an interpretive exhibit design and architecture career spanning more than three decades. Simply put, I tell stories using quotidian objects such as felt lined bulletin boards, clothing, and timecards as mediums. My work addresses several internal queries arising from my plight as a black woman in America: What does it mean to be invisible? How does the designation of invisibility affect my identity and sense of self? These specific questions also contextualize the title of my current exhibit—The Burden of Invisibility—by addressing the efforts I constantly make to combat a society that has been indoctrinated to view me through a singular, stereotyped lens or to not see me at all.
Moving beyond self, my practice utilizes visual methods to comment and shed light on the ways visual culture creates and influences the identities of disenfranchised people, people who don't have access to the nurturing possibilities of visual art, and those who are more vulnerable to repressive images in visual culture. As such, the Language of Invisibility (LOI) series speaks directly to black women, a group historically disenfranchised in American society. These topics are of particular importance to me as an African American empowered female who in the 21st century remains typecast as always already homeless with no claim to select landscapes. The LOI series investigates how black women see, don’t see, value, or devalue themselves in visual culture, and how these attitudes affect their sense of agency in constructing their own imagery or being susceptible to the images that already exist.