“Punishable by law. An insidious reminder. A half-empty threat. Insurance. A reason to f*ck with you, if we feel like it. We is the state. The manufacturer. The dollar. A badge. A machine designed to marginalize you, then punish you for it. Because to be marginal is to be criminal. And to be criminal is punishable by law. – Shaka Dendy
When people everywhere take utility into their own hands and reject a preconceived corporate purpose; When people everywhere build alternative resources and infrastructure based on need; With manipulations of labor into play and objects into universes, authority and private property must perpetually legitimize themselves. They respond with violence. How do we respond? – Noriyoshi Needle
For February 2020, Godine Family Gallery is pleased to host a dual exhibition entitled PUNISHABLE BY LAW, featuring artists Shaka Dendy and Noriyoshi Needle.
Working across installation, sculpture, video, digital and printed media, Dendy and Needle confront the criminalization of marginalized communities and the collective generation of possibility. Probing the historical and contemporary significance of plastic crates, raw cotton stalks, police batons, traffic cones, and other objects via their recontextualization, the work addresses the toxic biases towards race, class, and age spearheaded by hegemonic powers. Dendy and Needle wield their dual positions as interdisciplinary artists and community organizers to speculate futures through unforgettable art experiences. Additionally, the exhibition extends into room N181 featuring a series of works by Needle.