Seven of the original row houses are dedicated art spaces, hosting unique, interactive installations by artists from around the world. Each “Round” of installations lasts four months, and focuses on a particular theme that portrays, reflects and/or involves the surrounding Third Ward community.
March 31 – June 24, 2012
October 15 – March 4, 2012
Round 35 embraces the approach of Project Row Houses’ early days when the rounds were not thematic and each selected artist was provided a house to create and explore freely within the context of the historic Third Ward community.
Communograph is a multi-platform art project, initiated and organized by Ashley Hunt. Hunt developed the title, “Communograph,” combining “community” (communo-) with “writing” (-graph) so as to ground this research in “a writing of community from the perspective of the community itself.”
Begins October 9, 2010
Curated by Nery Gabriel Lemus and Edgar Arceneaux
- Charles Gaines
- Rodney Mcmillian
- Olga Koumandourous
- Andrea Bowers
- Nery Gabriel Lemus
- Edgar Arceneaux
Artist/Community Talk: Wednesday, October 6, 2010, 7PM
Opening Reception: Saturday, October 9, 2010; 4-7 PM
Exhibition Period: Saturday, October 9 – Sunday, February 27, 2011
Artist talk: Thursday, March 25th
Opening Reception: Saturday, March 27
Installations on view: March 27, 2010 – June 20, 2010
“No longer bound to a sense of having to restrict one’s focus, material, or genre, many contemporary artists of color move back and forth between past and present, between history and fiction, between art and ritual, between high art and popular culture, and between Western and non-Western influences. In doing so they participate in multiple communities. “
-From English Is Broken Here by Coco Fusco, participating artist
Project Row Houses is excited to announce the opening of Artist Installation Round 32: eco, xiang, echo: meditations on the african, andean & asian diasporas. These Artist Installations will be on exhibit from March 27, 2010 through June 20, 2010 and are free and open to the public. There will be an Artist/Community Talk on Thursday, March 25th at 7:00 p.m. in our main building at 2521 Holman Street.
In conjunction with Fotofest Project Row Houses is presenting New York/Philadelphia-based artist Nsenga Knight at 2320 Elgin in the Eldorado Building at the corner of Elgin & Dowling Streets.
Curated by artist William Cordova, this series of installations brings together a multigenerational group of artists from various backgrounds and geographic locations. Working in photography, performance, installation, drawing and sculpture, each artist presents work that addresses the often-overlooked connections between distinct cultures. These connections range from paralleling historical narratives to fantastical freedom dreamscapes. This project is a platform for a continued dialogue around the notions of collective consciousness in the Diasporas represented in this exhibition.
Participating Artists include:
- Crystal Campbell
- Albert Chong
- Coco Fusco
- Marina Gutierrez
- Ayana Jackson
- Minette Mangahas
- Glexis Novoa
- Mendi and Keith Obadike
In conjunction with FOTOFEST & Round 32, Project Row Houses presents a solo exhibition of photography by New York/Philadelphia artist Nsenga Knight at 2320 Elgin in the ground level of the Eldorado Ballroom. Working in photography, installation, film, and performance, Nsenga Knight conceptualizes history as a series of volatile encounters between unstable space and time. Acting as disruptive intervener and ardent preservationist, she constructs photographic archives, re-appropriates historical manuscripts, and performs reenactments that reference the physical impact of historical resistance and survival. In her photographic series she employs the camera as an archiving machine and seeks out the exhaustive limits of language and representation.
Programming at Project Row Houses is generously supported by:
- The Andy Warhol Foundation for Visual Arts; The Brown Foundation
- The Bruner Foundation Inc., Chevron Corporation
- Continental Airlines
- Dickson-Allen Foundation; Houston Endowment, Inc.
- The Lewis Family Foundation
- McGovern Foundation
- National Endowment for the Arts
- The Nimoy Foundation
- Texas Commission on the Arts
- William Hill Land & Cattle Co.
- Grant from the City of Houston through Houston Arts Alliance
Life Path 5: Action/Restlessness
Curated by Vicki Meek
Project Row Houses numerological designation is 5. It’s 5 whether you calculate from the birth of its first offering to the community in 1994 or if you do it from the number of letters in its name. 5 is the number that signifies Action/Restlessness in numerology.
The Life Path 5 suggests that PRH entered this plane with a highly progressive mindset, with the attitude and skills to make the world a better place. The key word for Life Path 5 is freedom. In the pursuit of freedom, PRH is naturally versatile, adventurous, and advanced in its group thinking. It is one of those organizations that always strive to find answers to the many questions that life poses. The byword for the positive Life Path 5 is constant change and improvement. PRH wants to be totally unrestrained, as 5 is the number most often associated with the productive use of freedom.
The artists selected to participate in Round 30 will represent the original intent of PRH- the conjoining of art and community. They will be charged with creating a house installation that speaks to the notion of freedom in the context of action/restlessness and community engagement.
Round 31 Artists
- Elia Arce
- Dave Herman
- Jesse Lott
- Vicki Meek
- Freddie McCoo
- Patrick Washington
Date: March 28, 2009 – June 21, 2009
Theme: Home. Space. Place.
Curated by Ashley Clemmer Hoffman
Project Row Houses invited seven exciting local and national artists to engage with the Third Ward and greater Houston Community in the creation of new installations in the Artist Project Houses. The theme, Home. Space. Place. focused on concepts that were centered in the Third Ward community and others that were generic to all urban neighborhoods. These included ideas of home, identity, culture, struggles and perseverance. Some artists drew upon the historical significance of the shotgun house, while others collected memories from Third Ward residents and/or created work in response to the neighborhood. All created artifacts; capsules of visions and memories that resonated throughout the community. Installations ranged from formal to more conceptual, utilizing a variety of materials and processes.
Gregory Michael Carter (Houston, TX) created the installation Walk with Me. Through multi-layered, mixed media works, Carter invited the viewer into his perceptions and experiences of the Third Ward as it pertains to issues of race and class.
Stephanie Diamond (New York, NY) created a two-part installation. In It Would Look Like… (Project Row Houses) Diamond invited area residents’ to share their visions of home utilizing her personal archives of over 200,000 photographs. In Snap Sharing, Diamond invited area residents to bring their own snapshots in a round table session of extrasensory perception, humor, story and myth making.
Rashida Ferdinand (New Orleans, LA) responded to the historic architecture of the shotgun house while creating a sense of memorial in her installation Lullaby. The work revealed the tragedy and pain of her grandmother’s survival of 1965 Hurricane Betsy, while also serving as a universal testament to faith, survival, persistence and love.
Lance Flowers (Houston, TX) utilized wit and irony as he channeled the people in Third Ward in his installation Can’t Buy Class where he placed the “haves” and “have-nots” of the local community alongside one another in a multimedia mural created on the interior walls of his installation space.
Cynthia Giachetti (Baton Rouge, LA) engaged the residents of Third Ward in the creation of her intricate textile installation Building Ground, as she paid tribute to her passage of time here at Project Row Houses and memorialized her Third Ward experiences.
Lisa Qualls (Houston, TX) utilized the images and forms from people within Third Ward and greater Houston communities in her installation Spirit Level. Looking at how the shotgun house serves as a symbol of home, Qualls’ work honored Houston neighborhoods and the memories of the residents.
Stacy-Lynn Waddell (Chapel Hill, NC) utilized her artistic process of burning, branding and singeing in her installation Call-n-Response. Waddell explored some of the contradictions and misunderstandings of American history in her “call” inviting the viewers to “respond”.
In conjunction with Round 30, Project Row Houses presented Yinka Adeyimi, a Yoruba artist from Nigeria, in his first solo exhibition in Houston, My Houston Turning Point. Yinka juxtaposes the traditional customs of batik, paintings on rice paper and bead mosaics with his own contemporary style. His artworks are an uplifting blend of Western Culture and mythological beliefs of the Yorubas.
Date: October 11, 2008 – March 1, 2009
Theme: THUNDERBOLT SPECIAL: The Great Electric Show and Dance – Commemorating Sam Lightnin’ Hopkins
Artist Terry Adkins partnered with Project Row Houses as curator and participating artist for Round 29: THUNDERBOLT SPECIAL. Joining Adkins in this Round were artists James Andrew Brown, Sherman Fleming, Charles Gaines and George Smith.
Adkins states, “We are all educators, black males and seasoned artists. I chose this group because Hopkins was a black male and a seasoned musician. This group can most appropriately address the life, work and accomplishments of Lightnin’ Hopkins in a variety of ways.” Each artist created an original installation in one or more of the artist project houses.
On October 11, 2009 the artists presented the THUNDERBOLT SPECIAL performance. This performance wa an interwoven variety of music, ritual, spoken word and video celebrating the life and art of Lightnin’ Hopkins. Featured were the artists members Lone Wolf Recital Corps, Blanche Bruce, The Sacred Order of the Twilight Brothers and the Anti-Formalist Reclamation Organization. The performance groups are composed of the visual artists who participated in Round 29.
A second focus of the Round was to address the unfortunate truth that although Sam Lightnin’ Hopkins was one of the most prolific and highly acclaimed blues musicians in the world, having recorded 120 albums during his lifetime, there is not a single monument or plaque in his adopted city of Houston, denoting his achievements and contributions to the cultural climate of the city or to his worldwide fame.
This group of artists began a public campaign to remedy this oversight by creating individual proposals for permanent public memorials to be erected at various sites in Houston. These proposals were placed in Project Row Houses archives and are available to the city for future projects.
About THUNDERBOLT SPECIAL artists
Terry Adkins is Professor of Fine Arts at The University of Pennsylvania and lives and works in Brooklyn and Philadelphia. As an installation artist and musician, Mr. Adkins pursues an ongoing quest to reinsert historically transformative figures to their rightful place in the landscape of regional and world history by creating recitals. The recitals combine sculpture with live musical/text oriented rituals, which attempt to reclaim and reenact the actual tenor of the subjects concerned, thereby upholding and preserving their legacies.
James Andrew Brown earned his B.F.A at Calvin College and his M.F.A. at Western Michigan University. He is a 1984 alumnus of The Studio Museum in Harlem’s renowned Artist-in-Residence Program. He has received numerous professional honors and fellowships, and his work has been exhibited in a variety of group and solo exhibitions throughout America, Europe and China. He is an associate professor at The William Paterson University of New Jersey. Mr. Brown stated, “I began as a painter, but my work has undergone a steady expansion into large-scale installations I call visual experiences, which draws from life. Drawing has been a means of exploring visual communication, and it has been a great part of my creative experience.”
Sherman Fleming is a visual and performance artist who has exhibited for 26 years across the U.S. as well as The Netherlands and Japan. For the past five years Mr. Fleming has collaborated with a group of artists who have exhibited in Senegal, Cairo and Pretoria under the heading Take Me To The River. Mr. Fleming is Program Coordinator for ArtWorks! Mural Art Program’s anti-truancy project in Philadelphia. This program offers art workshops for court-appointed youth throughout the Philadelphia metropolitan area.
Charles Gaines has focused on the postmodern and metonymy to make art that combines drawn or photographic images with text. Drawing from an array of literary sources, especially arguments challenging conventional ideas about meaning in art and its relationship to aesthetic experience, he made these ideas the basis of his work. His art addresses the irreconcilable opposition, in classical theory, between the conditions of feelings and the conditions of culture which negate each other in the same experience. Mr. Gaines has participated in several hundred group shows throughout the U.S. and Europe.
George Smith received his B.F.A. in sculpture from The San Francisco Arts Institute and received and M.F.A. from Hunter College in New York City. Mr. Smith’s sculptures and drawings are inspired by a continuous interest in polygonal and fractal geometry combined with geometric forms witnessed in traditional African sculpture and architecture. African and African-American history, cosmology, mythology and music are also important elements that appear in his work.
In conjunction with Round 29, Project Row Houses featured emerging artist El Franco Lee II. El Franco Lee II is a resident of Houston. His early artistic formative years were duly acknowledged by Houston Independent School District, the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston, Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo and the Glassell School of Art. He received his Bachelor of Fine Arts in painting from University of Houston. El Franco is the recipient of the 2008 Artadia Awards and the 2008 Lawndale internship program. El Franco’s solo exhibition will feature graphic paintings and drawings that depict social and urban issues.