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Chelsea Manning’s DNA, Candy-Colored Churches, and More Art This Week

(image via Fridman Gallery / Facebook)

A Becoming Resemblance
Opening Wednesday, August 2 at Fridman Gallery, 6 pm to 8 pm. On view through September 5.

It’s hard to ignore Chelsea Manning lately. And rightfully so: Against all odds, her newly liberated presence, both on Twitter and IRL, remains one of the most fiercely optimistic in a pool of (justifiably) jaded folk. Ironic memes have no match for colorful emojis, it seems. But this Wednesday, Manning can be found in an art gallery, and her presence manifests in more ways than just the literal.

A Becoming Resemblance is a collaborative venture between Manning and interdisciplinary artist Heather Dewey-Hagborg, using and exploring the technology of genomic identity construction. The show consists of 3D-printed portraits constructed in 2015 from pieces of DNA (hair, nail clippings) Chelsea sent her collaborator from prison. This gave the world a chance to once again put a human face to her identity, which had been shrouded by incarceration for years. The show will also include a graphic novel the duo made last year in collaboration with illustrator Shoili Kanungo depicting Chelsea’s sentence getting commuted by Obama and her being able to see her 3D portraits in person. What was initially drawn as hopeful fiction can now become reality.

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New Gallery in Flower Shop Basement, Black Label Biker's First Solo Show

Liz Taylor: Virginia Woolf by Wayne Hollowell

Liz Taylor: Virginia Woolf by Wayne Hollowell

Tomorrow night at 365 Grand Street, a new gallery will bloom in the basement of Essex Flowers — one that harks back to the Lower East Side’s “scrappier days,” according to Gallerist. The kickoff, at 5 p.m., features the work of nine local artists in their early 30s who will curate subsequent shows at the space (which has a very minimalist website).

For more of this week’s openings and closings, see the B + B art calendar, or have a look at the highlights below.
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