Tucked in the far-left corner, a small painting of a red rooster references a nursery rhyme often recited by the artist’s parents: “Good morning captain rooster, I’ve come to borrow your wings, to fly across the ocean, to hear Miss Lucy sing.” This rooster represents spiritual linkages between Black people living in diaspora and the African continent.
According to the artist, the idea of flying over the Atlantic emphasizes the infinite possibilities of Black people “accessing all of the energies we still have and may not even know we have.” These energies coalesce with four small glass jars arranged in the shape of a cross. One contains water, representing life and spiritual cleansing. For Minter, these vessels and containers represent spaces of safe keeping, “Ever since we have been here, everything that we have was meant to be taken, even our bodies. To have places to keep things, to hold things, that’s how we survive.”
From the 2023 exhibition Liquidity: Art, Commodities, and Water, curated by Michael Hartman, Jonathan Little Cohen Associate Curator of American Art
First Year Student Enrichment Program - Cultures, Identities and Belongings, Francine A'Ness, Summer 2023
Liquidity: Art, Commodities, and Water, Israel Sack Gallery and the Rush Family Gallery, Hood Museum of Art, Dartmouth College, Hanover, New Hampshire, July 29, 2023-June 16, 2024.
Judy and Noah Liff Foundation, Nashville, Tennessee; sold to present collection, 2022.
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