Des Moines
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weekly art forecasts from Central Iowa

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Make Their Gold Teeth Ache

by Alissa Sheldon

        On Friday, July 10, Moberg Gallery premieres “Make Their Gold Teeth Ache”, a gathering of works by artists seeking to provide illumination on racial identity, awareness, and inequality.  

        The collection, which includes works by artists from Brooklyn, Los Angeles, Chicago, and other U.S. cities, is curated by Des Moines native and globally acclaimed artist, Jordan Weber.  Weber, whose most recent installations, “American Dreamers” and “American Dreamers Phase 2” appeared in New York and Los Angeles respectively, explains the concept of the show:

   When whites develop the ability to see their racial positions from the perspectives of people of color, then this multilateral double consciousness can enable a form of critical interracial dialogue within the walls of art spaces. My goal with this exhibition is to assert a provocative array of work to stimulate our thinking on this important contemporary topic with deep historical roots.

        “Make Their Gold Teeth Ache” includes works from artists John Sims, Dread Scott, Rico Gatson, Mitchell Squire, Loren Holland, Eliza Myrie, Kohshin Finley, and Delfin Finley.  The show runs from July 10 through August 22 at Moberg Gallery in Des Moines.  Opening Reception is Friday, July 10.

Photo:  Dread Scott, ‘On the Impossibility of Freedom in a Country Founded on Slavery and Genocide, performance still 2,’ 2014. Photograph: Mark Von Holden Photography.

Video of Allison Safford’s Hello Goodbye, cast plaster hands, metal rods, wrire. 2012. 

Response by Cat Rocketship

March 18, 2014

Des Moines’ newest gallery opened with a party last Friday night – it seemed like all of the city came out for the first show at Viaduct Gallery at Des Moines Social Club. 

The show was good. It features a strong mix of local and national artists whose work touched on themes of interaction and the intersections of viewer and artist. Interface includes a number of new media works, including a pirate radio station, a booth in which the viewer overhears a phone conversation, and an image which reacts to live postings on Craigslist personals. 


Work by Rob Stephens (Source: ohnobody)

With the strength of the exhibited work, Elise Goodman and her Viaduct Gallery crew set a high standard of original concepts illustrated with quality workmanship.

The gallery has room for improvement in the areas of wayfinding and event logistics. Some work is separated from the larger body, and is easy to overlook, especially when clumps of happy art fans crowd the room. PA speakers obscured the exhibition titles. Although the space still feels like a firehouse worn a bit thin, I am excited to see how it becomes an exhibition space as it settles into its home, throws more shows, and reacts to its art.   

Interface remains on view at Viaduct Gallery through April 13.

Visit Viaduct Gallery’s page
Juice Magazine’s gallery of photos at the opening of Interface