Accidental Racism, 2010
Chainsaw carved BET award + performance
24 x 12 x 10 inches (award)
'Accidental Racism' is a performance in which a young, dreadlocked Caucasian male dazedly wanders around an opening while cradling a chainsaw carved replica of the BET award, designed in 2001 by graffiti pioneer Mare139 for the Black Entertainment Television network. A plaque affixed to the wood replica dedicates it to Jesse Owens, winner of four gold medals at the 1936 Berlin Olympics (and homophone of J.C., performer Grady Owens' grandfather). The piece was made for and performed during the opening of 'Intangible Interferences,' curated by Denise Carvalho at Momenta Art.
During the two-hour opening, Owens reminisced, sometimes coherently, with audience members about his grandfather J.C.