Blackbird, Fly Exhibition
June 28, 2022
Blackbird, Fly is an exhibition by local artist, Antoinette Cauley. During the beginning of the pandemic, Cauley accepted a position as an artist-in-residence in Berlin and moved there. However, she found the move to be particularly challenging.
While riding the train one day, a song came on by the name of “Blackbird” by the Beatles. The lyrics caught the attention of Cauley, really touching her, which influenced her so much she went on to create 14 paintings that reflected the feelings she felt while riding the train: abandonment, racism and the challenges of being a bi-racial Black woman.
In May Cauley retuned back home to Phoenix to begin her exhibition, where the painting she created are now part of her first travelling exhibition. One thing she is best known for, is the creating of her nine-stories tall mural on a downtown Phoenix building of author and activist James Baldwin.
Biography of Antoinette Cauley
As a hometown native of Phoenix, Arizona, Cauley considered to be an international artist. A lot of her work that she has created, draws inspiration from the grittiness and beauty; both typing back to the place of where she was born.
Cauley and her work is heavily influenced by rap music and Black American hood culture. It comes with a feminist tone and an overall focus of feminine empowerment. Visually, she combines the dynamism of rap music with powerful punches of vibrant color and deep, emotionally driven messages.
While attending Mesa Community College, she studied fine art with an emphasis in painting. During her time at the school, she was part of a two year apprenticeship with nationally renowned American oil painter Chris Saper.
Saper, took it upon herself to mentor Cauley, teaching her the ins and outs of the fine art industry.
A Look Into The Artist
Cauley is a biracial Black American woman from Phoenix. Her work looks to directly confront and question the normative racial narratives that have been historically presented within art establishments and institutions.
“By emphasizing the beauty in the many complexities of Black American Hood culture and Black hood feminism, I look to portray the depth and resilience of a demographic whose complete essence is consistently robbed for profit while their own bodies and stories are carelessly cast aside,” Cauley has stated in an article on the Gateway Community College website.
If you want to check out Antoinette Cauley and more of her work, click here. You can also check out her Instagram page containing more of her art if you click here.