visually compelling as they are conceptually challenging. Unique in their combination of African American identity and hip-hop music with elements of Buddhism and African spirituality, his works draw from a remarkably diverse range of sources, including racial politics, 1970s process art, urban culture, technology, and black history. In some ways Biggers's work expands upon that of an earlier generation of African American artists, including David Hammons and Betye Saar, with whom he shares the use of found objects and an interest in the discarded and overlooked.
Psychic Windows will feature five major works. In Poteau Mitan, Biggers transforms a mandala, or traditional Buddhist meditational tool, into an interactive, multisensory device. In its traditional form a mandala is typically a two dimensional diagram divided into many geometric sections, each of which has spiritual significance to its observer. Biggers's mandala is a mirrored, circular platform set at the entrance to the gallery. Visitors standing at its center can experience something akin to a low-tech dimensional transformation.
In another installation Biggers uses floor tiles from New York's Metropolitan Transit Authority buses to evoke the Buddhist concept of wabi-sabi – the profundity and beauty inherent in the mundane. In Bounce, Skate, Roll, the artist uses discarded wheels from roller-skates, skateboards, and shopping-carts to describe modes of contemporary American transportation and migration.
After attending the Maryland Institute of College of Art and the Skowhegan's School of Painting and Sculpture, Biggers received an M.F.A. from the Art Institute of Chicago. He has had residencies at P.S. 1 and The Studio Museum in Harlem. His work has been included in group shows in Japan, Italy, Los Angeles, Baltimore, Chicago, and New York, including the Freestyle exhibition at the Studio Museum and the Hip-Hop Nation exhibition at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts.
Sunday, April 7, 3:00 p.m.
Biggers will give an informal talk discussing the genesis of his recent work and its theme of transcendence. Biggers will then perform on the piano, which he has played professionally for many years – joined by guitarist Martin Luther who will play in the "future soul" style he has performed nationally. Local dancers will also respond to the artwork with improvised body movements.
Curator's Gallery Talk
Thursday, April 18, 12:15 p.m.
Phyllis Wattis MATRIX Curator Heidi Zuckerman Jacobson will discuss the diverse influences apparent in Biggers's newly created sculptures.