Exhibition Seeks to Inspire Individual and Social Change Through Poetry and Street Activism

Image courtesy of House of Trees

New York University’s Kimmel Galleries presents I PLEDGE, a House of Trees exhibition of eleven political and poetic flags created in partnership with poet Naomi Shihab Nye. The exhibition is curated by Pamela Jean Tinnen and will appear in New York University’s Kimmel Gallery Windows from December 21, 2017 through March 11, 2018.

In January 2017, arts collective House of Trees created a series of banners in collaboration with poet Anne Carson as a reaction to the new administration and the Women's March. This series of large-scale, hand-sewn banners was taken out into the streets and subsequently shown at arts institutions, and has been commissioned by Times Square Arts. The project, Word on the Street, was expanded into an all-female platform for political expression, and currently also includes banners by Carrie Mae Weems, Jenny Holzer, Wangechi Mutu, Tania Bruguera, Laurie Anderson, and A.M. Homes, some of which are currently on display in Times Square.

In December 2017, as communities work together under a second year of this administration, House of Trees has collaborated with Palestinian-American poet Naomi Shihab Nye on a new series of flags, titled I PLEDGE. Continuing to take artful, political action through this next year of the current administration, I PLEDGE seeks to inspire both individual and social change through poetry and street activism, along LaGuardia and West 3rd St, NYC.

I PLEDGE is a promise to fight for change that is inclusive, kind, and humane.”
-House of Trees

The display was also made possible by curatorial assistants Ivan Martinez Autin and Navneet Jain.

The street-side Kimmel Windows Gallery is located at NYU Kimmel Center for University Life, 60 Washington Square South. [Subways A,C,E,B,D,M to West 4th Street; 6 line to Astor Place; R train to 8th Street.].

Naomi Shihab Nye is a Palestinian-American author of numerous books of poems, including Transfer, You and Yours, which received the Isabella Gardner Poetry Award; 19 Varieties of Gazelle; Poems of the Middle East; and Fuel. Nye’s honors include awards from the International Poetry Forum and the Texas Institute of Letters, and four Pushcart Prizes. She has been a Lannan Fellow, a Guggenheim Fellow, and a Witter Bynner Fellow, and received The Academy of American Poets’ Lavan Award, selected by W.S. Merwin. She lives in San Antonio, Texas.

House of Trees is an arts collective working to expand the public appreciation and understanding of contemporary art through the production of murals, performances, installations, and other high-visibility publicly engaged artworks. House of Trees' projects are interventions in unpredictable sites, curated for both specific audiences and the larger public. House of Trees has exhibited with venues such as Times Square Arts, Leila Heller Gallery, The Watermill Center, and Luminaria Arts Festival in San Antonio, Texas, among others. For more information, visit house-of-trees.org or follow @houseoftreesart.

About the Kimmel Galleries: Established in 2003: Kimmel Galleries are dedicated to providing NYU and the larger NYC community visually dynamic and thought-provoking exhibitions, with an extensive and diverse exhibit program. The Galleries offer professionally curated exhibitions organized by NYU departments and programs to represent the wide range of scholarly discourse at NYU. The Galleries are free and open to the public. For more information on tours: the artists or price inquiries: please contact the Curator: Pamela Jean Tinnen: at 212 298 4950 or pamela.jean.tinnen@nyu.edu.

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