Omi Arts Summer Studios Group Exhibition


August 2 - 23, 2019

Works by
Diamela Ife Cutino
Qiana Ellis
Dawn Rudd

”Conjunction” represents the culminating art works of the 3 visual artists who applied and were selected to participate in the inaugural Omi Arts Summer Studios (OASS) pilot project. Designed as a 3-month, Affordable Studio Residency for People of Color Creatives, OASS was open to All Genders and Non-Gender Conforming adults living in the San Francisco Bay Area.

The OASS pilot explored the potential social and economic benefits of stewarding intentional space for artists-of-color and their cultural production inside of a city rapidly and violently gentrifying, namely Oakland, CA. The resulting exhibition from these Black womxn and the Gallery, represent a deep level of sacrifice, vulnerability, and learning edge. The question; How does the community benefit when specific parties investigate economic equity through power-sharing via creative arts practice, space-making and radical placekeeping? “Conjunction” exhibits multiple media/mediums occurring at the same point in time and space.

Friday, August 2, 6pm-9pm
Oakland Artmurmur Opening Reception

Saturday, May 4th, 2pm -4pm
Artist Talk: A Conversation on Home, Grief and Joy


Diamela Ife Cutiño is a photographer from Havana, Cuba. Her art is known for its unique way of capturing movement, whether social, political, spiritual, or physical. She is most known for her work documenting Black culture in Cuba including the Lukumí religion, Hip Hop, and Jazz. Her current project, My Black Island, is a cataloging and exhibiting of her portfolio from the earlier part of her career spanning the mid-1990's through mid-2000's, which covered the height of the Período Especial (extended period of economic crisis in Cuba), and the emerging Hip Hop movement in Cuba.

Qiana is a multidisciplinary artist living and working in Oakland, CA. She is descended from a long line of artists, tricksters, musicians, and teachers– both white and black, immigrant and enslaved. With her work she seeks to bring into focus the iconography of her own experience as a racially ambiguous, mixed, black American.

Contemporary artist Dawn Rudd loved the arts as a child growing up in Connecticut. Her natural ability was recognised and nurtured by her family. Her father, a professor and jazz musician, and her mother, a journalist, designer and Black Panther. Dawn is a synesthete, she sees sound as color, patterns or light and dark. Her work explores emotion, sound, movement and nature. She is an abstract expressionist, an action painter, collagist and photographer who has exhibited throughout the United States.

Omi Arts is an award-winning digital platform and pop-up project space for producing material/media and ongoing interactive programming for artisans, theorists, creative entrepreneurs, and students to feature diverse voices and genres that are artistically and socially relevant. Launched in 2013 as a social practice art gallery curated by Ashara Ekundayo in Oakland, CA, Omi Arts creative arts practice pedagogy intentionally nourishes partnerships between creatives, businesses, institutions and the public.

Omi Arts Project Space is located inside Ashara Ekundayo Gallery and is supported by the Akonadi Foundation - Beloved Community Fund and City of Oakland - Dept. of Human Services ReCAST Grant, and is fiscally sponsored by The Alliance for Media Arts + Culture