Explosion in a Shingle Factory, 2007

Donelle Woolford

Explosion in a Shingle Factory, 2007
Scrap wood, primer, enamel paint, glue, screws
Courtesy of Galerie micheline szwajcer, Antwerp 

Installation view



I never let my self get in the way of a good idea.


Several years ago I made some artworks related to Cubism. From across the room you couldn’t tell the difference, but they were even better up close, where you could. Interesting as they were, though, I knew they would never be as compelling as they could be so long as I was perceived as their maker. So, in addition to making the artworks I had to create an artist to make them.

Enter Donelle Woolford, who has a better idea, better story to tell, than I do. Picture this: a young African American woman, well read and smartly dressed, sets out to reclaim an aesthetic legacy stolen from her ancestors 100 years ago. Working alone in a remote corner of a recycling facility on the fetid backwaters of a faded industrial town, she rekindles past glories by reconstructing them from memory.

Donelle Woolford, Cubist painter. Donelle Woolford, appropriation artist. Donelle Woolford, narrative sculpture. The possibilities are endless.

This project was part of Sharjah Biennial 8.