“the/a mind the b mind” was a fully commissioned exhibit, featuring four large-scale paintings by Larissa Hammond and one in collaboration with poet Ariana Reines. The exhibit is several years in the making.
“Through the years this show has evolved, my body has been attacking itself through my immune system,” says Larissa Hammond. “I went down many paths with both my art and physical body before I finally reached a turning point.”
The paintings happened after a series of conversations with Reines. “We spoke about the silence women carry, what it really means and feels like to give consent, communications that result from being mixed race and culture in America, the importance of ownership and protection over one’s own body, taking care, how crucial it is to identify as sane, and the importance of relating to other people with love and humor as a way through any kind of opposition,” says Hammond.
The paintings themselves are an exploration in communication using a collective unconscious that Hammond built through her writings alongside conversations with Reines. “This collective unconscious is a combination of my matrilineal cultural heritage (Afro-Caribbean), past experiences, and direct feedback from my body as I recovered from a brain injury,” says Hammond.
Born in Indianapolis, Larissa Hammond studied architecture and linguistics at the University of Cincinnati before earning her BA from Portland State University. In 2012, Hammond earned her MFA from the Pacific Northwest College of Art and Oregon College of Art & Craft. Since graduating, Hammond’s thesis was purchased by conceptual artist Luis Camnitzer and she was named by Modern Painters Magazine as 1 of 25 Artists to Watch. Her first solo edition, THE REDDENING, was featured by Monograph Bookwerks and Triangular Press at the Codex International and LA Art Book Fairs. THE REDDENING was also purchased by the University of Iowa, Indiana University, and Oregon College of Art & Craft Rare / Artist Book Collections.
Born in Salem, Massachusetts, poet, playwright, and translator Ariana Reines earned a BA from Barnard College, and completed graduate work at both Columbia University and the European Graduate School, where she studied literature, performance, and philosophy. Reines’ books of poetry include The Cow (2006), which won the Alberta Prize from Fence Books; Coeur de Lion (2007); and Mercury (2011). Her poems have been anthologized in Against Expression (2011) and Gurlesque (2010). Known for her interest in bodily experience, the occult, new media, and the possibilities of the long or book-length form, Reines has been described as “one of the crucial voices of her generation” by Michael Silverblatt on NPR’s Bookworm.