Curtis Talwst Santiago, The Party Can’t Done, 2021; Hand Embellished, Signed, and Numbered Limited Edition Print
Curtis Talwst Santiago’s multifaceted practice—encompassing mixed media paintings, drawings, miniature dioramas, video, and performance—highlights the narratives that have been lost to, or misinterpreted by, history. His work has been the subject of solo exhibitions at New York’s The Drawing Center and Rachel Uffner Gallery, and is held in the permanent collection of the Studio Museum in Harlem. Based between Lisbon, New York and Toronto, he has also exhibited at the Pérez Art Museum Miami, Miami; New Museum, New York; the SCAD Museum of Art, Savannah; and the FLAG Art Foundation, New York; among others.
The Party Can’t Done originates from Santiago’s J’ouvert series, which celebrates his Caribbean ancestors’ resilience, joy, and imagination. An annual street celebration that signals the beginning of Carnival, J’ouvert is recalled by the artist as a special time in his childhood, defined by trips to Trinidad where he would be surrounded by family and bathed in sunlight. He muses, “My first Carnival was the first time I felt the presence of those who came before me.” For this limited edition, Santiago has embellished ten prints by reapplying a hint of his signature red aerosol to the depicted subjects’ faces.
Of this benefit series, the artist notes, “Printed Matter has been a long-standing resource to all of us in the arts community. For me, it is a limitless discovery zone, and I have spent money and time in their inclusive space. I was grateful to be able to browse through their vast collections before I could afford to buy, and I'm so glad to help support their continued presence.”
Hand-embellished, signed, and numbered by Curtis Talwst Santiago