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Sika Foyer 
Mara River Crossing 
February 21 – March 27, 2021

Opening Reception: Sunday, February 21st from 12-5pm, 6pm Zoom Artist Toast

ARTIST TALK via Zoom March 3, 6-7pm

ARTIST PERFORMANCE March 14, 2pm

 Images

Sika Foyer
Mara River Crossing 
February 21 – March 27, 2021
OPENING: Feb 21 from 12-5, 6pm Zoom Artist Toast

ARTIST TALK via Zoom March 3, 6-7pm

ARTIST PERFORMANCE March 14, 2pm

Soloway Gallery is pleased to present “Mara River Crossing” the solo debut of New York based artist Sika Foyer’s fabric bricolage sculptures and paintings.

Lumpy with stuffed bundles, upholstered extremities overflow into the space and beyond their media. Paintings and garments sprout appendages as trickster spirit pushes through textile skins with unexpected genders and genres. Surfaces and textures collide but the joint project of making a figure holds them together. “Trojan Horse” stands tall wearing a floor length gown of bundles which swirl ringlike from the hem up to the torso, which in turn is criss-crossed by dark blue and white yarn and attached by a long thickened cord to the wall. Another piece, “Black Skin White Masks” is a smart graphic patterned cocktail dress sporting a tie and an oversized phallic attachment also made out of chic fabric. In “Black Skin White Masks 2”, a canvas and a sculpture share an eye and a head.

Foyer uses fabric as an extension of skin that can be piled into structure, but also drape, curve, and swell. Sometimes Foyer uses cloth and clothing explicitly, a vintage dress is a vintage dress, and adds to it creating a fabric assemblage. In the case of “Black Skin White Masks” the feminine dress is juxtaposed with masculine sexuality, but also refers to African second hand clothing culture. Foyer uses African Batik and Dutch Wax Prints to visually locate her figures and objects within the African diaspora. Foyer also manipulates fabric to traverse two and three dimensional spaces, both extending out of the canvas as in “Black Skin White Masks 2” or by attaching the free standing “Trojan Horse” to the wall. The canvas in “Black Skin White Masks 2” serves as a background to a sculpture that emerges out of it as if the sculpture has one foot in our world and one in the imaginary painted realm. “Trojan Horse” by contrast is a tall structure in the round whose extension to the wall is striking and puzzling. The dark gray cord that loops from the top of the sculpture to the wall evokes either a black braid or a chain. Despite its regal skirt the figure appears bound by this linear gesture to the wall.

There’s a sense of a spirit trapped in Foyer’s work that relates to the performative practices of Kim Jones and Nick Cave. Although Foyer’s pieces here are meant to be animated in the viewer’s imagination, Foyer also has a parallel practice within performance which she will bring to Soloway on March 14th.

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Sika Foyer is an American multidisciplinary artist who explores wrapping cultures, the materiality of wrapping and its cross-cultural rituals to tell ancestral stories and to examine forms of social injustice. Foyer’s tireless gestural motions and micro repetitive layering expose what is covered, what is forbidden and what is hidden in plain sight. 

Born in 1968 and raised in Lomé, Togo, West Africa, Foyer was first introduced to drawing and clothing design at age 8 by assisting her fashion designer and dressmaker mother, Akouh Adjo Ebimide, in her Atelier, Chez Da Marie. Foyer came to the United States to attend Baruch College where she earned a BS in Economics in 2000, and went on to complete an MS in Urban studies at the New School in 2014. Throughout this time Foyer maintained a studio practice in New York and in 2020 obtained an M.F.A. from Lesley Art + Design in Cambridge, MA.