Artist Talks continue Oklahoma Contemporary’s commitment to providing a platform for artists to share their creative processes and studio practices with the public, connecting artists with their communities more deeply. Virtual programs can be viewed here and will remain online for one week after each event.
Ron Tarver and Ebony Iman Dallas
7-7:30 p.m. Thursday, May 20
Free registration required. Registration opens May 6.
Artists Ron Tarver and Ebony Iman Dallas explore Oklahoma’s civil rights legacies in We Believed in the Sun, on view in our Mary LeFlore Clements Oklahoma Gallery May 6 - Aug. 9, 2021.
Both Oklahoma-born artists with deep familial roots in the state, Ebony articulates personal and shared histories through bold, colorful, multimedia works, while Ron produces pensive photographs and layered compositions, recently incorporating images taken by his father during the 1940s and ’50s in Ft. Gibson, Okla. Tune in to hear both artists reflect on their processes and the people, places and events that inspired the work on view.
Listen as two or more individuals explore, interrogate and discuss exhibition-related topics. Virtual programs can be viewed here and will remain online for viewing one week after each event.
Robert Montgomery and Raymond Antrobus
7-7:30 p.m. Thursday, April 8
Program will go live at date and time listed above on our Thursday Night Late page, YouTube and Facebook.
April is National Poetry Month! Through billboard-style pieces like The Stars Pulled Down for Real (on view in our North Lawn until April 12), London-based artist Robert Montgomery brings a poetic voice to art experienced in both public and private spaces. Montgomery exhibited at the Venice Biennale in 2011 and represented the United Kingdom at the Kochi-Muziris Biennale in India in 2012. He speaks with Raymond Antrobus, a London-born poet now living in Oklahoma City; recipient of the Ted Hughes Award, the Rathbone Folio Prize; and recently appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire. Montgomery and Antrobus discuss the intersection of visual art and poetry as well as Montgomery’s subversion of Ezra Pound’s text in The Stars Pulled Down for Real. Lit with LED lights, Montgomery’s billboard serves as the urban writing on the wall that invokes the instinct for contemplative reckoning and evokes the power of cautionary tales. Antrobus reads his own poetry in response to Montgomery’s work.
Watch presentations of live music, dance, theater or poetry as we activate the Te Ata Theater, our sun-filled Dance Studio and casual performance spaces indoors and out. See program descriptions for reservation information for on-site programs. Virtual programs can be viewed here and will remain online for viewing one week after each event.
An Evening with Fire in Little Africa
7-9 p.m. Saturday, April 24
Main Building | North Lawn
Free tickets required. Reservations available April 8.
Join us for an evening of music and memory featuring hip-hop project Fire in Little Africa and Greenwood Art Project’s mobile exhibition, the G.A.P. Van. Organized by the Woody Guthrie Center and Bob Dylan Center in collaboration with the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre Centennial Commission, Fire in Little Africa brings together top rappers, singers, musicians and visual artists in Oklahoma to commemorate the centennial of the 1921 Massacre and introduce Tulsa’s hip-hop culture to a global audience. The G.A.P. Van is a multi-use, collaborative, mobile art exhibition, workshop space and poster project engaging Oklahoma residents to create posters that share their stories and reflect their voices in collaboration with PBS American Portrait. Come participate in this powerful, healing approach to commemorating the Tulsa Massacre and the history of the Greenwood neighborhood. The Greenwood Art Project is part of the Bloomberg Philanthropies Public Art Challenge. This program will contain mature content. Learn more here.
As One by Painted Sky Opera
In person | 7:30 p.m. May 14 and 15 | 2 p.m. May 16
Main Building | Te Ata Theater
Livestream | May 15 or on demand | May 15-June 15
Music by Laura Kaminsky
Text by Mark Campbell and Kimberly Reed
Original film by Kimberly Reed
As One tells the coming-of-age story of a transgender woman whose journey is depicted with humor and empathy by two singers — Hannah before and Hannah after. The opera follows Hannah from childhood to college and adulthood to self-realization when she travels alone to a different country. This powerful and unforgettable work comes to Oklahoma City in a new production after dozens of performances across the United States over the last five years.
Painted Sky Opera is proud to present As One in partnership with Oklahoma Contemporary in the new Te Ata Theater. This is Painted Sky Opera’s first production at Oklahoma Contemporary. Learn more about As One here.
Dead Languages by Jonathan Wei
7-8 p.m. Thursday, June 3
Main Building | Arnall Family Terrace
Free tickets required. Reservations available May 20.
Writer, performer and director Jonathan Wei joins us for a reading of Dead Languages, a powerful telling of his own coming-of-age story. Growing up as an anomalous, biracial kid in small Southern and Midwestern towns, Wei became attuned at a young age to subtext – the stories behind the stories. Offered concurrently with the exhibition We Believed in the Sun, Dead Languages explores Wei’s memories of living through desegregation in the American South, one lived experience that reflects many others, past and present, as we navigate public spaces and shared institutions daily. We Believed in the Sun is on view in our Mary LeFlore Clements Oklahoma Gallery May 6 – Aug. 9.