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Work in Progress

MBYE, IRVIN, JACKSON, SAYF

AUG 2018


Work In Progress comprises the work of four emerging artists - Papa MBye, Philip Irvin, Tyler Jackson and Murad Sayf. The work is personal, yet universal as it explores a common language of symbols, figures, and motifs.

This exhibition is a theoretical and live demonstration of how creatives working together, in a community, vastly increases efficiency. Through a unique execution of their exhibition, the artists highlight the importance of relationships to facilitate personal and collective growth within Minnesota’s art landscape.

Two days prior to the opening of the exhibition, the artists fully inhabited the space, working as a collective. This 48-hour marathon process was live streamed to the public. From Aug 2 - 5 the resident artists continued to work on the exhibition installation with viewing open to the public.

The effort unmasks the air of perfection typically surrounding artists in the public eye. Humanization is achieved by allowing the viewers “inside the process”: the messiness, rough drafts, and incomplete work we are too afraid to show. By showing the viewers the journey to the finished product—not just the finished product itself—we are breaking down the barriers between artist and viewer. 

Humanization is achieved by allowing the viewers “inside the process”: the messiness, rough drafts, and incomplete work we are too afraid to show. By showing the viewers the journey to the finished product—not just the finished product itself—we are breaking down the barriers between artist and viewer. 
 

ABOUT THE ARTISTS

Philli Irvin: I am a visual artist, event coordinator, and entrepreneur from North Minneapolis, Minnesota. My goal is to make a cultural impact on the world by affirming, encouraging, and helping others through my art, events, and business. In an instantaneous world that becomes more virtual by the second there's a longing to connect back to the physicality of life, and that connection is a driving force in my creative process. I explore ideas of softness, moldability, and permissiveness through physical space and a variety of mediums. My work usually consists of Jeeve, a representation of the self and a mirror of the world, along with my other character: the Expressions,  which are symbolic to emotions. I create to learn, question, and to feel human. My love for relationships and desire to help are driving forces for creating. For me being an artist is a practice of self discovery, softness, spirituality and service.

Papa MBye: Papa is a fine artist/illustrator who is interested in bridging the gap between those two worlds - allowing them to inform each other through the use of motifs to form storylines and narratives. With a background in caricature, exaggerated self portraits are a recurring themes of self identity and expression.

Murad Sayf: I am a visual artist who is drawn to uncovered thoughts, emotions and how marks, colors and figures inform those states. Many things inform my work, but mainly needs that are unmet such as curiosity and discovering new grounds, different mental states that are overlooked or the need to simply pay attention. Looking at things for what they are with little judgement, expressing and letting go emotions.

Tyler Jackson: (FAKETRAP) is a nineteen year old designer and illustrator from the Southside of Chicago, llinois. His work is heavily influenced by the environment around him, speaking on toxic masculinity in the black community, capturing the essence of gang violence, and street art and graffiti. Tyler has done murals in both Chicago and Minneapolis along with running his clothing line FAKE TRAP. He is heavily influenced by the work of the impressionist painters Seurat and Monet, emulating their pastel color palettes and decadent ways of dress. Tyler constantly challenges himself to be a student to the art game using his knowledge of art theories and historical events to influence his visual language.