Ariel René Jackson

Sat Jan 15, 2022 - Thu Mar 3, 2022
In A Welcoming Place Jackson employs a meteorological aesthetic as an allegory for oral narratives. They are interested in how narratives can be informed by collective testimonies collected via “taking temperature.” Forecasting, they propose, is the product of this data gathering, a practice of communication and codependency that relies on pointing out the environmental manifestations and historical markers of anti-Blackness that pervades gentrified landscapes. A Welcoming Place will showcase poetic narratives stitched out of six conversations with Black and Brown Austinites, half of whom were born and raised in Austin. These conversations focus on the advice given to Black and Brown newcomers as well as highlighting each individual’s relationship to the city of Austin, with an emphasis on East Austin. Each interview will be available in full as part of an accompanying podcast alongside the exhibition to serve as a community archive resource. Excerpts from each conversation will culminate into a video aided by visuals produced in the Austin area, highlighting sites where Freedman communities once stood and an animation, appropriating archival film footage about the weather balloon – a carrier for a mechanism that collects information about the weather.
A Welcoming Place was co-commissioned by Women & Their Work and Yorkshire Sculpture International with additional support from Black Spatial Relics, Black Art Matters ATX, and Six Square.
About the Artist

Ariel René Jackson grew up between New Orleans & Mamou, LA. They currently live and work in Austin where they completed their MFA at The University of Texas at Austin in 2019. Themes of loss and transformation are embedded in Jackson’s multidisciplinary work, which focuses on land as a site of negotiation between symbol and meaning. Their most recent work is informed by a how sense of place is learned and passed on.