About the Exhibition

VCUarts and The Anderson are pleased to present WE BUILT THIS HOUSE, an exhibition of eight Washington, DC-area artists organized and curated by the students of the Fall 2020–Spring 2021 Applied Curatorial Practices class. Each representing a different School of the Arts major, the six student members of the class worked tirelessly over the course of seven months—through all of the challenges of a pandemic, political upheaval and virtual learning—to realize this sensitive and timely group exhibition. Touching on themes which have been brought into sharp focus by recent events in DC, WE BUILT THIS HOUSE offers a glimpse of the power and promise of that city’s people and communities, and the artists who give them voice. WE BUILT THIS HOUSE was on view at The Anderson, Virginia Commonwealth University's contemporary art space in Richmond, VA, from February 23rd to March 10th, 2021.

Participating Artists

Larry W. Cook
Muse Dodd
Nekisha Durrett
Aziza Claudia Gibson-Hunter
Jewel Ham
Wayson R. Jones
Beverly Price
Amber Robles-Gordon

Curators

Cole Clark (Sculpture + Extended Media Studies)
Angelica Credle (Painting & Printmaking)
Natalie Duke (Art History)
Jasmine Elmore (Photography + Film)
Carolina Gaillard (Craft/Material Studies)
Grayland Smith (Kinetic Imaging)

Curatorial Statement

In solidarity with the citizens of Washington, DC, WE BUILT THIS HOUSE showcases eight DC-area artists, highlighting their roles in shaping their communities through art, performance, and storytelling. While DC serves as the seat of national power for the United States’ government, it is also home to over 5 million residents. In the midst of the capital city’s ongoing struggle for statehood and its people’s continued fight for equal representation, this exhibition re-centers the conversation about DC by focusing on the strength of DC’s long-established art communities, educational institutions, and vibrant music scene.
 
WE BUILT THIS HOUSE explores the soul of the nation’s capital, providing space for each artist’s representation and interpretation of their home. It engages its audience, alongside artists and community members, in efforts toward abolition and against gentrification – challenging us to see ourselves in the experiences of others.

Exhibition Programming

"We Built This House" Panel Discussion

Panel discussion featuring artists from the exhibition We Built This House (2/23/21–3/10/21, The Anderson, VCUarts). Participating artists include: Muse Dodd, Nekisha Durrett, Aziza Claudia Gibson-Hunter, Jewel Ham, Wayson R. Jones, and Amber Robles-Gordon. Moderated by the students of the Spring 2021 Applied Curatorial Practices course. The event took place 3/8/21, 7–8:30pm.
(Pictured above is Nekisha Durrett)

Photo Booth Documentation

During the WE BUILT THIS HOUSE exhibition, Larry Cook's untitled installation was activated by two Photo Booth sessions on March 6th and 9th, 2021. During these sessions, gallery visitors were invited to enter the work and pose in front of the backdrop. They were photographed by Anderson photographers Shane McFadden and Ray Warren and received complimentary images following the shoot.
(Special thanks to Larry Cook, Shane McFadden and Ray Warren)

Exhibition Photography

Shane McFadden
Ray Warren

Special Thanks

Nora Cafritz
CUT CUT Creative
Katie Elkins
Mariah Jones
Sam Taylor
The Anderson Staff