Discover two new artworks commissioned for Brookfield Place in the Winter Garden and Winter Garden Gallery.
Mothership | June 28 – September 17
Artist Xenobia Bailey’s artwork titled, Mothership, pays homage to the African American homemaker, caregiver, and domestic worker through the humble aesthetic of the needle arts. Single-stitched hand-crochet coverings draped over wooden chairs are reminiscent of the creativity and nurturing practices of her mother’s domestic skills.
Xenobia’s mother was the first influence on her work. “She created a beautiful ambience with nothing. She’d get these afghans and quilts from the Salvation Army to adorn the house in a way that was like an art installation.” This practice was common among Black women in rural, urban and suburban communities who felt the need for creative, warm and vibrant environments for both comfort and joy. This artwork celebrates the unsung women behind this folk-art tradition which evolved from Cottage Craft and the Arts and Crafts Movement in North America since the 1800’s and continues to this day.
Hallowed Be Their Names | July 12 – September 17
We invite you to sit under the canopy of Xenobia Bailey’s “Funktional Frequency Environment,” created to celebrate and uplift communities affected by loss.
The installation represents the survival of the human spirit that is often embodied in “Black Joy,” a skill cultivated by African American homemakers and caregivers who assist those in need of soulful and emotional refuge from the collective traumas of the world.
The artwork, hand crafted by Bailey, is composed of a crochet hammock and 8 swings constructed out of 26-gauge copper wire. Each crochet piece is accented by a funky-lace freeform style crochet, reminiscent of her childhood home, and paired with crystals above. The selected color palette represents the various regions the artist has lived, while the crystals act as conductors of energy as each copper wire color reflects through them.
We encourage you to reflect on what your own “Funktional Frequencies” might be as you view the artwork woven throughout the Winter Garden palm trees.
About Xenobia Bailey
Xenobia Bailey was born and raised in Seattle, Washington and currently works and lives between New York City and Philadelphia, PA. Prior to moving to New York City, she attended the University of Washington where she studied Ethnomusicology as an undergraduate in a graduate program.
While at the UW she interned as a costume designer for Black Arts West Theater Group, an African American Community Repertory Theater Group in Seattle’s African American Community. She transferred to Pratt Institute, in Brooklyn New York, where she earned a BID, Undergraduate degree in Industrial Design. After Graduating for Pratt, she learned crochet at a community Center in Brooklyn where she applied her Industrial Design education.
Her crochet wear has appeared in Elle Magazine, Spike Lee’s films Do the Right Thing, and Mo Better Blues, The Cosby Show, A Different World, The Lion King theatrical production, Sprite Commercial, United Colors of Benetton Commercials, Absolut Vodka Campaign, and several popular music videos. Her work is in the permanent collections at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in Harlem, New York; the Newark Museum in Newark, New Jersey; the Fuller Craft Museum in Brocton, MA; and the Museum of Art and Design in New York City. She is also the recipient of a Creative Capital Grant, The Tiffany Award, Anonymous was a Woman Grant; Awards from the New York Foundation for the Arts, and A Blade of Grass Foundation.
Xenobia’s most recent projects focus on Cultural Equity, Funktional Design, community Labs, and public art works. Projects include, her cultural equity, design labs in 2015 with Creative Times/The Weeksville Society and Boys and Girl High School in Brooklyn New York; A community project titled Black Radical Brooklyn: Funk, God, Jazz and Medicine; Working Classroom in Albuquerque, New Mexico; The public Arts commission of 3 mosaic murals for the New York City Transit Authority, to be completed in 2015 as part of the 34th Street Hudson Yard line extension; Parachute Walkway in Coney Island Brooklyn New York; The Martin Luther King Memorial Library Washington DC to open Fall of 2021; and A Public Art Mosaic at The Spa Beach Piers in St Petersburg Fl installed Feb 2020.