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Seph Rodney

Official Website of the Art Critic, Writer, Curator & Museum Researcher

ABOUT

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Seph Rodney, PhD, is a former senior critic and opinion editor for Hyperallergic. He has written for the New York Times, CNN, MSNBC, and other publications. He is featured on the podcast The American Age

His book, The Personalization of the Museum Visit, was published by Routledge in 2019. In 2020 he won the Rabkin Arts Journalism Prize. In 2022 he won the Andy Warhol Foundation Arts Writers Grant.

"So Che gets reduced to a poster, the renegade figure of Malcolm X to a choreographed arrangement, the struggles against AIDS to a song, and concerted, protracted protests to a hand signal for peace. This is what pop culture does. It's about giving us the whiff, the suggestion of something that has a very high price tag that someone else paid for."

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FEATURED PRESS

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CURATORIAL PROJECTS

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March 2023

THE ALCHEMISTS

Seph has co-curated, with Donovan Johnson, an exhibition at Johnson Lowe Gallery (formerly Bill Lowe Gallery) in Buckhead in Atlanta. The aim of the show is to pose the question "How does an artist transform matter and transcend the ordinary?" More, The Alchemists offer artists who construct unique forms rooted in Black experience and ancestral legacy to demonstrate that this magic can indeed be done.

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Summer 2023

COMING CLOSE

Both of these artists come close to the very human experience of seeing, touching, and knowing each other — really coming into awareness of the other at varying levels of intimacy. Chellis Baird and Megan Dyer make approximations of the personal and propositions about our future encounters. As their voices converge here in enthusiastic exchange, the visitor listening closely might just be able to make out their own name.

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Summer 2023

THERE IS A CERTAIN
SLANT OF LIGHT

This exhibition, curated by Seph Rodney, explores the poetic use of light in painting, photography, and multimedia artworks. The selected artwork encourages viewers to appreciate the meaning and significance of light and to allow luminescence into their lives. The exhibition showcases a talented and diverse group of Pratt alumni, all of whom earned an M.F.A. in Fine Arts between 2018 and 2022.

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April 2024

MATERIAL

“Material,” as a noun refers to matter, stuff, the elemental parts of a thing. But as an adjective connotes that a thing is significant, consequential, weighty. My use of the homonym is for more than intellectual showmanship. Both of the ways in which the term operates are particularly germane to the artists I’ve placed in this exhibition — Chakaia Booker, Leonardo Drew, and Trenton Doyle Hancock — artists who utilize particular materials to make objects that are of substance, that is to say, meaningful. Material  will open at CPM Gallery in Baltimore on April 27th.

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2024-2025

GET IN THE GAME

From October 19, 2024-February 18, 2025, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA) will present Get in the Game—its largest exhibition organized to date—exploring the powerful role of sports in contemporary culture. The forthcoming exhibition will examine how sports permeate culture, bring people together in shared experience and offer a critical lens through which to consider ongoing conversations about gender, race, national identity and the human body, as well as the will and desire to compete and succeed. 

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