Carrie Mae Weems is today one of the most influential artists in America. With her influence comes with a keen awareness of the kind of space she occupies. Her mere presence in whichever role she takes portrays often helps to tell a very compelling narrative about today’s society.
Her latest performance was at Sharon Prince Grace Farms Farm Foundation. During the performance, she was able to creatively encourage the audience to consider societal inequality, injustice, and race, as she continued to create space with her performance skillfully.
Using her powerful voice and her backup group of talented singers, dancers, and poets, Carrie implores us to take into account some of society’s relentless injustices and violent actions.
Using images, text, and words, Weems was able to take her audience through some of the most violent actions that have occurred in society in the past. By the end of it, she took the audience through what would happen if action was not taken to control what is happening in the society.
The performance helps bring the audience to the possibility of society becoming extinct. Weems goes on to inquire whether society would be willing to consider the value attached to a single life and to put an end to the relentless violence. By the end of the performance aptly titled Past Tense, she is able to leave some space for hope—as she herself remains hopeful that society will one day consider the impossible, and make a change for the better.
Sharon Prince Background
Sharon Prince serves as the President and Chairperson of the Grace Farms Foundation. The foundation was launched in 2009. Its sole purpose is to try and enhance lives through society’s engagement with faith, community, justice, arts, and nature. She is also credited with commissioning the River Building, which won the Pritzker award for its architectural design.
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