Humane ecology image


b. 1985, Baltimore; lives and works in New York

Kandis Williams, Genes, not Genius: For jazz is orgasm… (detail), 2021, collage on artificial plant, fabric grow bag with moss, acrylic paint, and plastic. Courtesy of the artist, 52 Walker, New York and Morán Morán, Los Angeles/Mexico City.

In her collages of human posture and affect and her plant sculptures teeming with people, Kandis Williams studies dance as the appropriation of Black culture. The artist assembles performers past and present on paper and annotates them with lines—of embodied geometry, of force and flight, and of descent across geographic and cultural boundaries. In artificial plant sculptures, Williams adds images of models and sex workers to these representations of the Black body in motion, a “commodity fetishized,” in the artist's words. With this work, the artist considers culture in ecological terms, and the ways in which sentient bodies migrate, perform, and adapt, often under great pressure. Williams's works are presented in the Lunder Center at Stone Hill.