Ayana Evans

2018 Residency: September through December

My on-going performances/public interventions include: “Operation Catsuit,” “I Just Came Here to Find a Husband,” and a new series of collaborative works with artists of diverse backgrounds. These performances map how my body is perceived and treated as it operates in artistic and social spheres. The collaboration that I recently completed in Accra, Ghana spoke to the complex history of African slavery and its modern affects on Black America. Through participatory performance art-practices I hope to critically explore the semiotic and political economies of presumed knowledge that are lived through my body. Making-Art-While-a-Woman-and-Black is a matter of conceptually choosing how I perform my ‘self’ through different negotiations of social ideals  and manifestations. People frequently articulate these ideals through different modes of appearances in daily (ritualistic-habitual-cultural) living practices. I often perform these struggles through mundane repetitive movements, or high-risk physical acts in my work.

During my residency at Artists Alliance I plan to continue creating conceptual performance experiences, as well as build new objects and videos that reflect the ideas and emotions of my performance practice.

Ayana Evans is a NYC based artist. She frequently visits her hometown of Chicago whose community is a major influence on her art. Evans received her MFA in painting from the Tyler School of Art at Temple University and her BA in Visual Arts from Brown University. In 2015 she received the Jerome Foundation’s Theater and Travel & Study Grant for artistic research abroad. During Summer 2016 Evans completed her installment of the residency, “Back in Five Minutes” at El Museo Del Barrio in NYC. She completed a performance series this Spring 2017 for “A Person of the Crowd” at the Barnes Foundation, Philadelphia, PA; as well as FAIP an international performance festival, Martinique; “Light Happenings II” presented by Lab Bodies, Baltimore, MD; and Rapid Pulse Retrospective, Chicago, IL. Evans also performed at Ghana’a Chale Wote festival in August 201, was a 2018 Fellow in the Studio Immersion Program at the Robert Blackburn Printmaking Workshop sponsored by the Elizabeth Foundation for  the Arts, and is a current  2018 NYFA Fellow for Interdisciplinary Arts. She is Editor at Large for www.cultbytes.com.  Her recent press includes articles on New York Magazine’s The Cut, Hyperallergic, the Huffington Post, gallerygurls.net, and CNN.

ayanaevans.com