10 art exhibits to explore this fall

Solon Kelleher for WBUR

'Gio Swaby: Fresh Up'

From afar, a Gio Swaby portrait may resemble an acrylic painting: bright colors and thick lines. But up close, it’s clear that these are not paintings, but threads and fabrics sewn onto canvas. Born in the Bahamas and living in Canada, Swaby incorporates materials her mother used in their native land. Although the final products are in fabric form, Swaby also uses photography and drawing in her process, almost in a similar method to rotoscoping, but instead of drawing on film (as in the “Take on Me” video), Swaby intricately traces fabric over images derived from photography sessions with her subjects. Her art focuses on women from her own personal life, capturing the moments of Blackness and womanhood in a relaxed and joyful state. In addition to the works by Swaby, the Peabody Essex Museum offers a Spotify playlist to accompany the exhibition, featuring artists such as Solange, Chaka Khan, Ms. Lauren Hill, Bill Withers, Moses Sumney, Kool & the Gang and Aretha Franklin.

September 22, 2023