Tomashi Jackson: The Land Claim
July 10 - November 7, 2021
Tomashi Jackson (born 1980, Houston, TX) is a multidisciplinary artist working across painting, textiles, sculpture, and video to place formal and material investigations in dialogue with recent histories of displacement and disenfranchisement of people of color, resulting in formalist compositions of exuberant color, bold geometries, and intricate layerings of material. Jackson’s continued investigation into color, light, and perception, and the effects of these on the value of human life in public space is inspired by Josef Albers’s research on the relativity of color.
Jackson was invited as part of the Parrish Art Museum’s 2021 Platform series, an annual invitation to an artist to consider the entire Museum as a site for works that transcend disciplinary boundaries, encouraging new ways to experience art, architecture, landscape, and community.
Tomashi Jackson: The Land Claim focuses on the historic and contemporary lived experiences of Indigenous, Black, and Latinx families on the East End of Long Island, and how issues of housing, transportation, livelihood, migration, and agriculture link these communities.
Early in 2020, Jackson met with historians and community advocates from the Latin American Organization (OLA) of Eastern Long Island, Eastville Community Historical Society of Sag Harbor, Bridgehampton Child Care & Recreational Center, and the Shinnecock Nation.
For the Parrish exhibition, Jackson will develop a new body of work, including a series of large-scale paintings, site-specific drawings on the south-facing window façade in the Museum Lobby, and an outdoor sound installation. The work will be based on her research and will include archival images and documents from families, churches, and historical societies, and recent press articles.
The exhibition, postponed from 2020, will be the culmination of a 12-month phased project which includes a series of public talks with historians and community leaders; a digital archive including interviews, historical and contemporary photos and press articles; a publication; and learning material based on original drawings and transcripts of the interviews.
In an ongoing partnership with the Parrish that fulfills its mission of presenting process-based projects for the Museum’s Platform series, The Watermill Center has invited Jackson for a residency from May 12–June 11, 2021, as part of their Inga Maren Otto Fellowship for visual artists.
The juxtaposition of current and historical racial segregation in The Land Claim is similar to Jackson’s concept for the 2019 Whitney Biennial where she drew a parallel between the destruction of Seneca Village, a free Black community that was razed in the 1850s for the creation of Central Park, and contemporary practices of redevelopment in New York City that rely on the targeted dispossession of Black and Brown property owners through the Third Party Transfer Program.
The exhibition will serve as the basis for inquiry, discussion, and creative production in the Parrish’s educational programs. Exhibition themes will inform student and family workshops, adult docent tours, and gallery discussions.
Tomashi Jackson: The Land Claim is organized by Corinne Erni, Senior Curator of ArtsReach and Special Projects, with research assistance by Curatorial Fellow Lauren Ruiz.
About Tomashi Jackson
Tomashi Jackson’s work was included in the 2019 Whitney Biennial. She has a solo exhibition coming up at Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University, Cambridge, MA (Fall 2021). Past solo exhibitions include Wexner Center for the Arts, Columbus, OH (2020); Night Gallery, Los Angeles, CA (2020); Tilton Gallery, New York, NY (2019, 2016); and the Zuckerman Museum of Art in Kennesaw, GA (2018). Past group exhibitions include The Moody Center for the Arts, at Rice University, Houston, TX (2020); the Contemporary Art Center, New Orleans (2019); Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; and MASS MoCA (2017). Her work is included in the collections of the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; Pizzuti Collection, Columbus, OH; The Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY; and The Baltimore Museum of Art, Baltimore, MD. She is an alumna of Skowhegan School of Painting & Sculpture, and was a fellow at ARCAthens, Greece (2019). Jackson has taught at Rhode Island School of Design, Massachusetts College of Art, Cooper Union, and New York University. She received her MFA in Painting and Printmaking from Yale University School of Art in 2016; her Master of Science in Art, Culture and Technology from the MIT School of Architecture and Planning in 2012; and her BFA from Cooper Union in 2010. Jackson lives and works in Cambridge, MA, and New York City.
Tomashi Jackson: The Land Claim is made possible, in part, thanks to the generous support of The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts; National Endowment for the Arts; The Bandier Family Foundation; The Mr. and Mrs. Raymond J. Horowitz Fund for Publications; The Dorothy Lichtenstein ArtsReach Fund, established by Agnes Gund; The Lumpkin-Boccuzzi Family; The Deborah Buck Foundation; Sandy and Stephen Perlbinder; The Speyer Family Foundation; and Nina Yankowitz.
We are pleased to partner with The Watermill Center in support of Tomashi Jackson’s project and acknowledge their generous partnership through their Inga Maren Otto Fellowship.
The Museum’s programs are made possible, in part, by the New York State Council on the Arts, with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, and by the property taxpayers from the Southampton School District and the Tuckahoe Common School District.