Ageism has been described as one of the most institutionalized forms of prejudice and it directly affects the wellbeing of those it targets. It is also the only form of discrimination we will all face if only we live long enough. Parallels can be found in hyperconsumerism where the old is discarded to make room for the new.
Local printmaker, Amy Fleming has become interested in ideas surrounding ageism and disposability. As part of her creative process, Fleming rescues lost and neglected items such as rusting gearshifts, china shards, and broken bottles. She photographs these remnants of consumer culture and incorporates them into her screenprints.
Fleming’s artwork prominently features portraits of mature women, most of them regulars at the City of Tallahassee Senior Center. Using images of mass produced, discarded objects, Fleming creates royal robes and crowns for each elder citizen. They smile in the foreground, appearing as iconic as a saint, and are haloed by radiator hoses and hairspray bottles.
The portraits highlight the subjects’ strength and convey their inherent beauty and the value of a community’s elders. This exhibition includes 130 individual artworks which serve as a reminder that a diverse older population is critical for a healthy intergenerational society.
A free, public reception for the exhibition begins at 6:00pm on Friday, Feb. 8 in the City Hall Gallery, and lasts until 7:30.
This is one of a dozen exhibitions curated by COCA and is part of the City of Tallahassee’s Art in Public Places program. For more information about this exhibition, upcoming exhibitions, or the Art in Public Places program, contact Amanda Karioth Thompson (Amanda@tallahasseearts.org) at COCA, (850) 224-2500.
Free and open to the public Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.