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Artist Talk with Jennifer Wen Ma

Join the Halsey Institute staff, interns, and Advisory Board to hear from exhibiting artist Jennifer Wen Ma about her newly opened site-specific installation, Cry Joy Park—Gardens of Dark and Light. This event is free and open to the public!

Cry Joy Park—Gardens of Dark and Light is an investigation into the construct of a utopia, inspired by the history of Charleston, South Carolina: a cultural and artistic capital of the American South, and an exemplar of its opulence and beauty. This installation aims to present both an alluring, gorgeous and otherworldly garden, and its darker counterpart. The worlds created by the exhibition are a juxtaposition of utopia and dystopia and are presented via an immersive multisensory experience that utilizes various forms of communication to convey its message.

The installation will feature two separate gardens: a Dark one and a Light one, both representing a yin/yang balance between utopias and dystopias. Her exhibition will also feature collaborations with the School of the Arts at the College of Charleston, which will take the form of interdisciplinary performances by students in the visual arts, theatre, dance, music, creative writing, and more. Ma is also planning a series of community dinners that will serve as platforms to discuss specific issues facing Charleston, such as social justice and gentrification.