Bámigbóyè &
the Equestrian Shrine Figure





The Yale University Art Gallery has a renowned collection of Yorùbá sculpture from West Africa. Opening in fall 2022, the special exhibition Bámigbóyè: A Master Sculptor of the Yorùbá Tradition is dedicated to the workshop of the Nigerian artist Moshood Olúṣọmọ Bámigbóyè (ca. 1885–1975). In celebration of this upcoming event, master carver Lukman Àlàdé Fákẹ́yẹ (born Ibadan, Nigeria, 1983) guides a close-looking session via Zoom with Cathy Silverman, Assistant Conservator of Objects and Furniture. Introduced by James Green, the Frances and Benjamin Benenson Foundation Associate Curator of African Art. This is a rare opportunity to study an important work of Yorùbá sculpture from a maker’s perspective and to learn about decisions that inform materials and technique. Generously sponsored by the Martin A. Ryerson Lectureship Fund.

Video directed, produced, filmed, and edited on behalf of the African Art department by Geovanni Barrios, the Yale College Public Service Fellow in Conservation Videography.

these pictures don't do my mother's beauty justice





installation by Geovanni Barrios and Ethan Shim featuring Kali Malone's Spectacle of Ritual

installed for the CG x Junior Studios, Spring 2022 show “Smile, You’re On Camera”


Retreat

by the Control Group






Filmed over the duration on the Control Group’s annual weekend retreat, Retreat follows its characters across hallucinations and food-induced hysteria. Watch through scenes of vertigo and car sickness, ritual to harvest gods, children’s swamp dreams, strange feasts, and euphoria in the great outdoors. Featured music includes Mvmt. I “Fast” from Electric Counterpoint by Steve Reich, The Piano Drop by Tim Hecker, and Concerto for Philodendron & Pothos by Mort Garson.

While uncredited, I served as Co-Director, Director of Photography, Camera and Gimbal Operator, Editor, and Digital Imaging Technician on this project.

Waveform Generator




Made with Max MSP, Waveform Generator is an architectural body that analyzes procedural audio information and transforms it into a self-generating waveform landscape. The patch was projected onto a 10x36ft LED video wall. This sample performance includes Requiem for CS70 and Strings by Floating Points, Bucephalus Bouncing Ball by Aphex Twin, and Ball by Duval. Performance in New Haven, Connecticut, on December 16th, 2021, at the Off-Broadway Theatre.

Inorganic




A sound machine that creates natural sounds and animates ripples of water (“hard-limbed” bodies of water).


I started first by sequencing audio. I opted on rain as the primary event. I had spent some time learning about the physics of rain as it falls and what differentiates different waveforms as a droplet splats over water or sand or pavement or wood. I chose to combine pink and white noise~ as an FFT audio signal that would randomly scrambles pitches based on the waveform’s pattern. That scrambling is what makes the rain pattering pitched. This is not supposed to imitate rain as much as embellish it or be an interpretation of rainfall as a ‘musical notation’.

Then I synthesized the jit.world, which means I populated a 3D animated blank world with data that would self-generate a mesh system. The mesh system could be handled live and adjust as fast as my computer GPU can handle. I manipulated the mesh system to populate a matrix chart in a similar fashion to the raking of sand in a karesansui garden. My friend called it a ‘silk simulator’. The intent was to watch a close-up view of the sand grooves with a sonic interpretation of the inorganic materials interacting with one another as the ‘sand’ was being generated.

I was really fascinated by the idea of experiencing different seasons and natural events from the dry garden. Forcing ‘rain’ over the dry garden felt cataclysmic. To add to that mix, I chose to populate a waveform analyzer with the matrix visuals, which could then be manipulated by other frequencies, in this case a phasor~. This new frequency addition introduced an element of wind to the overall scene, decided by a factor of the sand generator—this sounds more like a lores frequency and it is quite aggressive. I was thinking here about erosion, the elapsing time and how wind is an unsuspecting transformer. Wind moves slowly but surely and displaces fine grain particles in its wake. I was very happy to introduce it as a sound.

The rest of the gadgets of audio would manipulate the sounds away from the natural and back to the synthetic which is just a further exploration of the sound manipulating capabilities. I would suggest setting your volume low before listening. I’m not sure if this project is meant to be relaxing. I think it ventures towards a deliberately unmanicured chaos—in the right format I’m sure someone would find it relaxing.


stretcher I & II

over and over and over and over



This work is supported by the College Performing Arts Award at Pauli Murray College.

Among my first battles in isolation was having to stifle my urges to drink. Living completely alone and in the absence of alcohol in New Haven for the entirety of quarantine, I was forced to interact with my immense loneliness as a young gay man. I could not stop from making parallels of this current pandemic and the continued HIV/AIDS pandemic. As it was then and as it continues now, grief and loneliness drown the LGBTQ+ community. I found myself reading archival materials about the AIDS outbreak in the US and have gravitated towards critical queer theory regarding and confronting the government’s failing response to the AIDS Crisis and drawing parallels now to COVID-19. I was deeply consumed with the personal testimonials and diaries, among other archival material I could find online of the communities that saw such immense death. I was also trying to navigate the lack of testimonials of black and trans LGBTQ+, which is symptomatic of an androcratic and racist system, even manifesting within marginalized groups. I have since been enlightened by the glorious speeches of Sylvia Rivera and Marsha P. Johnson, and again by the poetry and writing of Pauli Murray, among countless others.


I became fascinated in the changing systems of communication between now and then, and the assumed empathy we have for each other through advancements in technology—as if technology guarantees communication or healthy relationships. Spending so much time on my own rendered me to my most basic self as I spent most of my time trying to handle failed communication and an inability to empathize. This also left me thinking about the presence of absence; the realization and the acknowledgement of emptiness and acceptance as a first step to addressing a problem. The burden and pain of time and my perceived conceptions of reality/time made empathizing one of the most challenging things to do. While knitting is a peaceful process, it also requires absolute patience, especially when you take on a project so large that a single row can take several hours. Most, if not all, my energy went to concentrating on the tapestry because it was a simple action that required limited use of already limited emotional energy.


The pervasiveness of death during isolation made me envision my own funeral service, and, as such, Stretcher is equally my take on the medical stretcher, the funeral shawl, and the coffin. I would hope, while certainly solemn (and not to occur for many more years to come), that my funeral service be a celebratory and beautiful service too. I would hope that following our subsequent burial, Stretcher as an organic material like myself, would give rise to new life. I hope to see Stretcher deteriorate and change over time.


I am also very aware of the Stretcher series as a prospect of paternalism; I am acutely aware of my position as a young man using a traditionally and predominantly feminine artform/craft to create a body of work and advance my artistic and academic agenda. I have been trying to find some ways of addressing this issue and have yet to come up with solutions that I deem fitting. This will be a point of discussion as I move forward with the work.


Over 500+ hours have been dedicated to the series thus far. 


learn more about the process ︎︎︎




process

and over and over and over and



I have been blessed with the continued support of local New Haven businesses, particularly The Juice Box on Chapel St. Thanks to their help I was able to collect unimaginable amounts of avocado stones and skins—surely thousands of avocados. Special thanks to Laura, Alex, Willa & Sammy.

Over the course of 6+ months, I have been collecting these avocado stones and skins in preparation for en masse dye baths of bare and unprocessed wool and cotton skeins. So far, I have process nearly 10k yards of yarn in my tiny little kitchen.

Once the avocados are eaten, the stones and skins are thouroughly cleaned and scraped of remaining fruit particles and left to dry in open air. This light drying helps me pick which stones to use for a particular batch as oxidation/coloration of the tannins varies from stone to stone.



After picking which avocado stones and skins I think will give me the best color, I run about 2L of water and set on the lowest heat for upwards of 6+ hours. This runtime really softens the stones and allows the tannins to really diffuse into the bath. This is aided even more so overnight as the the stones continue to release tannins. 

Meanwhile, I start processing the unbleached and natural yarns. The yarns usually come unnoticeably dirty—particle dirt attaches to the inner fibers of the yarn and have to be vigorously released so that the tannins can bind properly to the fabric. I hand wash the skeins aggressively and wring them out until the water runs clear. Then I’ll let them sit overnight too.

Once morning comes, the yarn will still have release some more dirt. Another wringing means I can just drop them into the dye bath. I usually set my stove to its lowest heat for about two hours so that the fibers can open up a bit more. Boiling the yarn can lead to felting, especially for wool, so the lowest heat is recommended. Then it is just a waiting game! I usually let the yarn sit in the dye bath for a full 24 hours before wringing it out and drying overnight.


     




see the progress ︎ ︎︎︎


Being able to pick between stones lets me achieve a far more consistent saturation of the tannin’s naturally pink and orange-bronze tones for the yarn skeins to pick up.