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Karen Seneferu’s Debuts at the Oakland Museum “Fruitvale to Florida: Strange Fruit No More”

11 October 2013

Karen Seneferu

A faculty and staff member of Peralta Colleges, Karen Seneferu will be debuting at the Oakland Museum for Dia de los Muertos: “Tree of Life and Death.” Her artwork confronts how historical exhibitions have been used to humiliate and demoralize the African presence while challenges the viewers to heal from that horrific past.

In her debut, she addresses colonialism through science and technology, using these forms as vehicles of communication; she intersects the tree lynching of Black people with the killing of Oscar Grant, Trayvon Martin and countless victims.

The installation “Fruitvale to Florida: Strange Fruit No More” exhibits a tree made from mylar where the branches resemble figures that appear to swoop in and across other figures, a statue that advances the ancient style of the Inkisi from the Congo Basin, and a short film that memorializes the victims murdered by police officers, security guards and vigilantes. What this film demonstrates most important is that despite the tragedy, resilience still exist within families and communities that endure this pain.

The audience is invited to participate in making sacred the profane. In healing, Karen Seneferu encourages diverse communities to recognize that their ancestral spirits are neither broken nor buried, just waiting to be reclaimed.

The reception is this Friday, October 11th starting at 6:00pm.

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