Please join us for an in-person celebration and panel discussion at the Bliss Consciousness exhibition featuring the work of artist Mikel Elam, currently on view in the Arts Lounge at the Annenberg Center through February 2024.
Moderated by Tamara Suber, Sachs Program Executive Coordinator for Grants, Equity, and Community Strategies, the discussion will feature three notable panelists: Jackie Tileston, a transformative painter and Penn professor; Jack Drummond, a musician deeply engaged in arts advocacy and community-building; and Mikel Elam, the artist behind the Bliss Consciousness exhibition.
The conversation will delve into the intersections of creative practices, wellness, and meditation, exploring the synergies between painting and music and how these coalesce in the panelists’ diverse creative practices.
All are welcome! This event is free and open to the public. Registration is encouraged but not required.
- Wednesday, December 6, 2023
- 4:30–6:30 PM
- The Arts Lounge at the Annenberg Center
3680 Walnut Street (enter from the South Plaza)
University of Pennsylvania
About the Exhibition
Bliss Consciousness embodies the convergence of history and futurism, reflecting on shared humanity and the potential for an inclusive future. Mikel Elam’s work is inspired by mindfulness, Afrofuturism, and a philosophy of love and unity. His storytelling is rooted in memory and dreams, starting from photographic inspirations and transforming them through layering, erasing, deconstructing, and reimagining. The exhibition features portrayals of figures, emphasizing the beauty of dark skin and focusing on essence and humanity. It suggests narratives that bridge past and future, inviting contemplation on identity and community.
Curated by Heather Moqtaderi of Past Present Projects, Bliss Consciousness represents Elam’s recent works and is an immersive experience encouraging dialogue about our collective future and envisioning a world where unity and diversity coexist harmoniously.
The exhibition is supported by The Sachs Program for Arts Innovation at the University of Pennsylvania and Penn Live Arts and hosted at the Arts Lounge at the Annenberg Center, providing an intimate space for deep engagement with the artist’s works.
About the Curator
Heather Moqtaderi is the curator behind Past Present Projects and is known for her insightful and innovative approach to art curation. With a keen eye for contemporary art and a deep understanding of historical contexts, Heather has established herself as a prominent figure in the art world. Her curatorial work often explores the intersections of history and modernity, aiming to create exhibitions that are not only visually compelling but also intellectually stimulating. Her involvement in Bliss Consciousness brings a nuanced perspective to the exhibition, ensuring that each piece selected resonates with the overarching theme and contributes to a cohesive and impactful viewer experience.
This event is made possible with support from The Sachs Program for Arts Innovation at the University of Pennsylvania and produced in partnership with Penn Live Arts. Special thanks to Penn Live Arts.