Raél Jero Salley, Flower Sale, 2019. Courtesy Gallery MOMO.
Raél Jero Salley
Born in 1979
Lives & works in Baltimore, USA and Cape Town, South Africa
Presentation of the artist
Raél Jero Salley (b. 1979, United States) struggles through issues of representation, broadly. His practice is grounded in the history and tradition of painting, but with subjects who are addressed in non-linear ways. Often, Salley’s paintings appear out of context: they resemble photographs, film stills, commemorative portraits, but they lack definitive names, periods, or narratives. The result is a constellation of images that engages with the viewer’s imagination.
Generally, Salley’s work is interested in how we look at things and expect them to be meaningful. He wants his images to generate more questions than answers, to open and expand dialogue.
Raél Jero Salley is an artist, cultural theorist, and art historian. He holds degrees from The Rhode Island School of Design (BFA), The School of the Art Institute of Chicago (MFA), and The University of Chicago (PhD). His research interests include modern and contemporary art and visual culture, with a focus on Blackness and the African Diaspora.
Currently serving as Chair and Professor of Art History, Theory and Criticism at the Maryland Institute College of Art, Visiting Professor at UCLA (African American Studies), and a Research Associate at Stellenbosch University, Salley previously served as Senior Lecturer at the University of Cape Town.
Salley is a contributing editor to The Postcolonialist Journal, and his words have appeared in The Queer Africa Reader; Kerry James Marshall: Who’s Afraid of Red, Black, and Green; Third Text; Social Dynamics; African Arts, and other media. He has won numerous grants and awards, including the Knowledge Interchange and Collaboration Grant (National Research Foundation) and a Fellowship at the Gordon Institute for the Fine and Performing Arts. Salley’s work has been featured in various solo and group exhibitions in South Africa, the US, and Japan, to name a few.
Nationality : United States