All Articles
All Articles

Pattern Recognition at MoCADA

A class of young, multidisciplinary artists break the norm with a show of ideological and aesthetic patterns in contemporary abstraction

by James Thorne
on 18 July 2013

Coming from a background in marketing, Dexter Wimberly isn't afraid of a hard sell. Since moving to the art world as an independent curator, Wimberly has worked to discover and promote talent that is breaking new ground. Endlessly seeking out new names, the curator admits, "Not a week goes by that I don't talk to an artist that I didn't know last week." So when the chance came to curate an entirely abstract show at the Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Arts (MoCADA) in Brooklyn, Wimberly took the challenge and started searching.

While MoCADA has been operating for 14 years, most shows have focused explicitly on the theme of diaspora, typically with a historical component. Wimberly's previous two exhibitions for the museum, The Box that Rocks and The Gentrification of Brooklyn, kept in line with that theme. For Pattern Recognition, Wimberly "wanted to do something that was a departure from what MoCADA usually did." Part of that wish involved focusing on abstract artists that work outside of the mainstream. Bringing together Rushern Baker IV, Kimberly Becoat, Hugo McCloud, Duhirwe Rushemeza and Sam Vernon, the curator was able to find ideological and aesthetic patterns in contemporary abstraction.

Each of the artists are young and emerging, part of a diminishing class that opts for non-representational work. For the show, Wimberly sought artists who were brave, multidisciplinary and distinct in their approach. While the messaging is subtle, each name finds room for a theme, ranging from consumer culture to racial history. Collectively, the group proves that simple variations of color, material and light can be profound.


Of the group, McCloud stands out as a self-taught artist who explores the textures of waste and the urban environment. His large-scale wall pieces present a striking mosaic of patinas. Restricted to found materials and focused on a combination of pure texture and color, the artist nevertheless creates surfaces that have an almost whimsical quality to them.

The show comes hot on the heels of a successful $50,000 fundraising campaign for MoCADA on Kickstarter, signaling a bright future for the contemporary museum. Pattern Recognition runs from 18 July through 6 October 2013 at MoCADA on 80 Hanson Place in Brooklyn's Fort Greene neighborhood. There will also be an artist talk on 25 July from 6-8PM.

The CH25 is a showcase of creators and innovators from a broad range of disciplines who are currently working to drive the world forward.

Pauline van Dongen

The Dutch designer blazing the wearable technology path

Read More
I’m fascinated by concepts of change, movement, energy and perception; since they are closely related to the way we experience the world

Lulu Mickelson

A civic leader bringing change to NYC through design

Read More
Human-centered design is one of the many tools that we can use to better engage the public

George Arriola and Monohm

An heirloom electronic for the post-smartphone era

Read More
We agonized during the design process as all hyper-obsessed craftspeople should

Sabine Seymour

A future where smart clothes are as ubiquitous as zippers

Read More
In the future you will not buy a piece of 'functional' clothing without SoftSpot

Matt Kenyon

Fusing art and technology to disrupt concepts of corporate America

Read More
I want the work to live in the world and circulate, so it can generate more dialogue

Kegan Schouwenburg

Revolutionizing orthotics through 3D-printed insoles

Read More
What orthotics do is they effectively change the geometry of what your alignment is like

Meredith Perry

How searching the Internet helped a 22-year-old invent wireless electricity

Read More
It’s not about where the information is, it’s about how you use the tools

Kathleen Supové

The NYC performance artist who’s radically reinventing the piano recital

Read More
I like pieces that are virtuosic, that show off the piano and what it can do, and are awe-inspiring

Alex Kalman

The tiny museum in Manhattan that’s redefining museums

Read More
The mission is to put this small simple and powerful tool into the hands of as many people as possible

Eelke Plasmeijer

The locally driven restaurant that’s upending Balinese food culture

Read More
We really try to keep things simple and let the produce do the talking

Leopoldine Huyghues Despointes

The young filmmaker and non-profit founder who just wants people to follow their dreams

Read More
I feel confident and ready to accomplish so much more, the movement is on

Marcus Weller

Using technology to turn motorcycle helmet design on its head

Read More
I was taken aback both by the number of people that doubted it, and by the equally large number of people that got behind it

LaToya Ruby Frazier

Documenting the slow, troubling change in Braddock, Pennsylvania

Read More
I am not a journalist, I am a conceptual documentary artist using my visual expression for building narratives that are unseen and unheard

Cynthia Breazeal

How an emotional, empathetic robot named Jibo stands to revolutionize communication

Read More
The thing that's so provocative about social robots is that it's fundamentally a community technology

Douglas Riboud + Justin Guilbert

How a mission to create great coconut water led to a whole new way of doing business

Read More
We’ve made a conscious decision to be as transparent and honest as we can, and let people decide for themselves

Tarren Wolfe

The next-generation appliance making kitchens greener—literally

Read More
Our goal is to provide food for everyone in the world, and the best place to start is in our very own community

Vanessa Newman

Redesigning pregnancy for the post-gender generation with Butchbaby & Co.

Read More
I want my customers to feel comfortable and unchanged, in that becoming pregnant didn't take away from or compromise their identity

Roxie Darling

From un-shampoo to transgender identity, the NYC colorist boldly defining the next chapter of hair

Read More
Hair color is as much a science as it is a craft

Joshua Harker

Pushing the boundaries of sculpture with intricate 3D printing

Read More
My intent was to explore and depict the architecture of the imagination, to interpret and share forms evident in the mind’s eye

Dan Barasch + James Ramsey

A quest to make the future brighter—underground

Read More
We both share a passion for groundbreaking technology and a shared love of New York

Tal Danino

The bioengineer who’s programming DNA to fight cancer

Read More
[Manipulating genes] is very new, people are just learning how to program these organisms

Jonathan Sparks

Reinventing electronic music by inventing multi-disciplinary instruments

Read More
Recorded music is becoming so cheap, so the value of music is now in live performance

Melissa Kushner

Addressing the needs of orphans and vulnerable children in Malawi through microenterprise

Read More
Poverty is complicated, there is an increasing temptation and pressure in the development space to oversimplify things

Sarah Kunst

The entrepreneur single-handedly changing the landscape for women in tech

Read More
People who live on a planet that is half women but can never seem to find any when they need one, I have solved your problem

Corinne Joachim Sanon

The chocolatier bringing social change to Haiti and bean-to-bar chocolate to the world

Read More
Seeing the poverty surrounding me and the lack of jobs and opportunity bothered me
Loading More...