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Member Preview: Gio Swaby—Fresh Up

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  • Free for members

Enjoy a full day of member-only access to Gio Swaby: Fresh Up.

Gio Swaby is a multidisciplinary artist whose textile-based practice explores the intersections of Blackness and womanhood. Her embroidered portraits are anchored in the connections she forges with her subjects: each portrait begins with a photo shoot in which her sitters are captured in moments of self-awareness and empowerment. In her textile interpretations of the photographs, she foregrounds hair, clothing, and jewelry, highlighting and celebrating personal style as an unapologetic form of self-definition and self-expression grounded in liberatory love.

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Gio Swaby: Fresh Up is organized by the Art Institute of Chicago and Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg.

The exhibition is curated by Melinda Watt, chair and Christa C. Mayer Thurman Curator of Textiles, Art Institute of Chicago, and Katherine Pill, curator of contemporary art, Museum of Fine Arts, St. Petersburg. A fully illustrated catalogue, published by Rizzoli, accompanies the exhibition and includes an interview between the artist and Pulitzer Prize–winning writer Nikole Hannah-Jones, as well as essays by the curators and contributions from Swaby herself.


Major funding for Gio Swaby: Fresh Up is provided by Nicholas Antoine and Wanji and Clive Walcott.

Additional funding is provided by The Elizabeth F. Cheney Foundation.

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