Sara Jimenez – 2022 Cornell Biennial

Sara Jimenez

At what point does the world unfold?

Fabric Installation

At what point does the world unfold? is a new installation by Sara Jimenez on Cornell’s Arts Quad. Jimenez has taken the main elements of Goldwin Smith Hall’s Beaux Arts architecture and individually abstracted and fabricated them to scale. The installation goes across part of the Arts Quad, partially tied to trees, and partially rooted into the ground. Each architectural element is made of brightly colored textiles, with printed floral patterns and ornamentation. The plant and flower images refer to local species in the landscape prior to Cornell’s presence.

Jimenez is interested in creating an installation that reorients the viewer’s assumptions of history through visual strategies of disrupting the familiar. The Arts Quad is a central hub at Cornell, housing the Arts and Sciences. It is also where Cornell was first built. The central building of the Arts Quad, Goldwin Smith Hall, is a Beaux Arts, neoclassical building, named after a former professor who has since been called out as holding racist and misogynist beliefs. As it currently stands, the visual orientation signals empire, whiteness, maleness. Jimenez is interested in deconstructing the authoritative architectural elements and transforming them into new fantastical forms that disrupt their lineage. Jimenez is interested in calling into question the histories and spaces prior to the institution, as well as questioning how spaces welcome certain bodies while excluding others.

The title comes from a line from Sara Ahmed’s text “A Phenomenology of Whiteness” as she speaks about the phenomenological and racial relationship between bodies and their surroundings.

Sara Jimenez (United States/Canada) explores the material embodiment of deep transcultural memories. As a Filipinx-Canadian artist, she is interested in materializing existing global narratives around concepts of origins and home, loss and absence. She works in installation, sculpture, collage, textiles, video and performance, to create visual metaphors that allude to mythical environments and forgotten artifacts. Jimenez received her BA from the University of Toronto and her MFA from Parsons the New School for Design. Selected exhibitions include the Pinto Art Museum, El Museo del Barrio, Rush Arts Gallery, BRIC Gallery, BronxArtSpace, FiveMyles Gallery, The Brooklyn Museum, The Bronx Museum, and Smack Mellon, among others. She has performed at numerous venues including The Dedalus Foundation, The Noguchi Museum, Jack, The Glasshouse, and Dixon Place. Selected artist residencies include Brooklyn Art Space, Wave Hill’s Winter Workspace, a full artist fellowship to The Vermont Studio Center, the Bronx Museum’s AIM program, Yaddo, BRICworkspace, Art Omi, Project for Empty Space, LMCC’s Workspace and Bemis (upcoming). She is the recipient of the Cecily Brown Fellowship and has been listed as Smack Mellon’s “Hot Picks” in both 2018 and 2019. Her work was recently acquired as part of the permanent collection of the Ford Foundation Center for Social Justice. Selected awards and grants include NYFA’s Canadian Women’s Artist Award, as well as Canada Council for the Arts’ Explore and Create Grant. Jimenez teaches at Parsons the New School for Design, New York University, and mentors graduate students at the Vermont College of Fine Art, and the School of Visual Arts. sarajimenezstudio.com

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