Jacolby Satterwhite - AMERICAN AFRICAN AMERICAN New York Friday, February 8, 2019 | Phillips
  • Provenance

    Mitchell-Innes & Nash, New York

  • Catalogue Essay

    Born 1986, Columbia, SC
    Lives and works in New York, NY

    2010 MFA, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
    2009 Skowhegan School for Painting and Sculpture, Skowhegan, Maine
    2008 BFA, Maryland Institute college of Arts, Baltimore, Maryland

    Selected honors: United States Artists Fellowship (2016); Louis Comfort Tiffany Grant (2013); and Art Matters Grant (2013)
    Selected exhibitions: San Francisco Museum of Art; Seattle Art Museum; 9th Berlin Biennale; Whitechapel Gallery, London; Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, NY; and Dallas Museum of Art
    Selected public collections: The Studio Museum in Harlem, New York; Seattle Art Museum; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; and Museum of Modern Art, New York

    A leading figure within the generation of artists working with the visual language of new technologies, Jacolby Satterwhite is celebrated for a conceptual practice addressing themes of labor, consumption, sex and fantasy through immersive installation virtual reality and digital media. Best known for his futuristic, dance-infused animated works, he uses a range of software to produce intricately detailed animations and live action film of real and imagined worlds populated by the avatars of artists and friends. Satterwhite infuses his fantastical digital worlds with references to popular culture – ranging from video games, music videos, club dance styles – and biography to playfully probing questions of memory and queer desire. “It’s about observing my personal archive of people, places, and things, and making poetic, moving visuals from that,” he explained, “Connecting spaces that don’t normally converse is how I yield an honest, unpretentious form.”

    Ever since his first solo exhibition in 2013 and participation in the 2014 Whitney Biennial, Satterwhite has garnered considerable critical acclaim for his influential subversive practice. A significant influence for the artist has been his mother: Satterwhite uses the diagrams, drawings and recorded songs she created as source material for his video imagery and audio soundtracks, but also credits her as the inspiration to abandon painting. As Satterwhite explained in a 2016 Frieze interview, “…being an African-American artist and a gay artist, I could not escape the 400 years of oppressive history attached to the medium [of painting]. Eventually, I threw away all my paints and primers, picked up a camera at Wal-Mart and started to perform in front of it. Around the same time, I watched my mother make the same drawings she had been making since I was a child. She was mentally ill but, over the course of her life, recorded seven albums and made over 10,000 drawings…I realized that Patricia Satterwhite was the artist hero I should have had all along. So, I decided to make her a rubric for the way I thought about art. That’s why I began performing…I felt confined by the fact that every gesture I make as an African-American artist would be placed under the umbrella of politics, so I tried being less contrived and didactic. I know that I have a lot of loaded images in my videos, but there are many ways in which to read them.”



chromogenic print, diptych
each 33 x 50 in. (83.8 x 127 cm.)
Executed in 2018, this work is from an edition of 3 plus 1 artist's proof.

Estimate On Request


New York Selling Exhibition 10 January - 8 February 2019