European Old Master Paintings reexamined in New York from a new perspective on blackness and slavery

Local Today

Claire Oliver first heard about the work of Canada-based Simone Elizabeth Saunders during the Black Lives Matter movement, and it wasn’t long before they started working together. Saunders has a show debuting March 17 at Oliver’s Harlem Gallery dig up unicorns, in dialogue with the unicorn carpet at the Met Cloisters.

Saunders was struck by how trapped the unicorn was… and her work, combined with black joy, black love and black magic, works to free it. Through cultural mythology and a rootedness in the body, her work challenges and revitalizes tradition through a racially provocative and positive lens.

2022, Unearthing Unicorns series, hand tufted velvet, acrylic and wool yarn on carpet warp, 66 x 56 x 1 in Claire Oliver Gallery

March 9, 2023