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Artist-in-Residence at Pasadena City College: Kori Newkirk (2018)

Research guide dedicated to the current Pasadena City College Artist-in-Residence, and an overview of past Artists-in-Residence.

PCC Artist-in-Residence 2018: Kori Newkirk

Poster with collage of Kori Newkirk's work and a profile photograph of him. Text on poster reads: "Kori Newkirk, Artist in Residence 2018. 31st Anniversary, Pasadena City College, Artist in Residence 2018, February 20 - April 13, 2018. Residence week March 19 - 23, 2018. This exhibition is made possible by the support of the Pasadena Art Alliance, the Student Services Fund, the Office of the President and the PCC Foundation, and the Division of Visual Arts and Media Studies. Special thanks to Office Services."

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Kori Newkirk: Artist-in-Residence Lecture at PCC

About Kori Newkirk

Kori Newkirk received his MFA from the University of California, Irvine in 1997 and his BFA from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 1993. In addition to a monographic survey at The Studio Museum in Harlem (2008) and the Pasadena Museum of California Art (2008), Newkirk has had solo exhibitions at The Project, New York (2009, 2006), LAXART, Los Angeles (2008), MC, Los Angeles (2006), the Museum of Contemporary Art, San Diego (2005), and Locust Projects, Miami, Florida (2005). Group exhibitions include Blues for Smoke, MOCA, Los Angeles (2013), Meet Me Inside, Gagosian Gallery, Los Angeles (2010), Selections from the MCA Collection, Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, Chicago (2010), the 2006 Whitney Biennial, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, DAK'ART: 7th Dakar Biennial, Dakar, Senegal (2006), Uncertain States of America, Astrup Fearnley Museum of Modern Art, Oslo, Norway (2005-6), the 2004 California Biennial, Orange County Museum of Art, Newport Beach, California, and Freestyle at The Studio Museum of Harlem (2001).

Curatorial Statement by Mahara T. Sinclaire

Kori Newkirk creates mixed media artworks often inspired from cast-off objects found in his local environs of downtown Los Angeles.  Newkirk harnesses these rescued objects in thought-provoking works that comment on our society. These unexpected impetuses provide a spring board for Newkirk’s investigations into art, as he intersects these creative materials into a fruitful dialog with art history, providing a cogent commentary on our everyday world and what it says about us as a culture.

By using unpredictable materials such as pony beads, pomade and hair extensions, Newkirk astounds us by articulating complex ideas about our cultural memory. For example, in an early work Newkirk suspends old tires from nooses in the gallery, evoking simultaneously the idyllic memories of swinging from a tire as a child and the terrifying legacy of our nation’s racist history; the memories of horror inflicted upon and endured by his African-American ancestral family contrasted by his own joyful memories as a child in the summer. Newkirk’s provocative works, inflected and informed by his African-American heritage, poignantly remind us of our racist inhumanity. Further, his work addresses the on-going alienation of the black community in our contemporary society. Newkirk continually reinvents his practice, rethinking cultural notions of beauty, exploring issues of narcissism, celebrity and spectacle in the political arena, and taking his practice into new unexpected directions.

This exhibition of Kori Newkirk’s work offers a suite of recent works, in hopes that the viewer may witness this dialog between life and art that characterizes Newkirk’s unique vision.

photos w/o captions

Kori Newkirk - Works

Click an image to view in greater detail.


Photograph of installation of Glint

Glint (2005)
Plastic pony beads, artificial hair, aluminum
92 x 84 x 48"

Photo of installation of Gainer

Gainer (2006)
Plastic pony beads, artificial hair, aluminum
85 x 143.5 x 42"

Photo of installation of Republic


Republic (2016)
Steel, rubber, aluminum, plastic, copper, foil
28 x 240 x 28"

Photo of installation of Mayday


Mayday (2010)
Cotton, particulate, stainless steel
162 x 162 x 2"

Photo of installation of CCounts

CCounts (2009)
Powder coated steel and acrylic
46 x 26 x 23"