Artists Reach Out: Ashley Brockington - Gibney
Week of July 13, 2020
Making space for

Artists Reach Out: Ashley Brockington

Ashley Brockington with white dots and white paint on her arms.

ARTISTS REACH OUT: REFLECTIONS IN A TIME OF ISOLATION

Senior Curatorial Director Eva Yaa Asantewaa dreamed this series of interviews, Artists Reach Out: reflections in a time of isolation, out of grief for her work both as a documenting arts writer and curator of live performance.

“In this time of social distancing, we are called to responsibly do all we can to safeguard ourselves and our neighbors. It is, literally, a matter of life and death.

But there’s no distancing around what we still can share with one another—our experiences, thoughts, wisdom, humor, hearts and spirit. In some ways, there are more opportunities to do so as we pull back from everyday busyness out in the world and have time to honor the call of our inner lives.

So, let me introduce you to some artists I find interesting. I’m glad they’re part of our beautiful community, and I’m eager to engage with them again (or for the first time) in years to come.” – Eva Yaa Asantewaa, Senior Curatorial Director

This interview features Ashley Brockington, performance artist and 2019 Gibney Living Gallery artist.


Born. Brooklyn Parents. Midwest childhood. Divorce. Thirteen Schools. Howard University. University of the Arts. The Hippy Years as Grad School. Barefoot for thirteen years. Gay Husband Dead. Circus Amok. Rivers of Honey. Black Girl Ugly. New York Neo-Futurists. Dixon Place. Astrology. Who am I and Where do I go Next?

Do you have a current or planned project whose progress is affected by the pandemic?

I do not have a project planned.

Briefly, tell me about how you got involved in the arts and in your particular practice.

I began making original work in 2008 when I was a member of the WOW Café Theatre collective. I created a project that dealt with Black women in America and issues of self-esteem. Then I joined the New York Neo-Futurists and continued writing original short plays. Race was often a theme in those works. Now, I am working on a project that revolves around the relationship that I have with my 7-year old self.  It’s an epistolary love story.

In a more specific way, what are you practicing? And what are you envisioning? 

I am practicing creating a loving relationship with myself.

How does your practice and your visioning align with what you most care about?

I have come to realize that unless I learn to love myself fully, nothing in my life can truly flourish. I’ve recently learned that I have a green thumb. I’m currently practicing watering my own flower.

How does your practice function within the world we have now?

I spend a lot of time alone. I used to be an avid journal keeper. I am currently revisiting that practice. Anais Nin and Maya Angelou are my mentors. I feel we’re all so obsessed with being approved of. I am deeply committed to learning to approve of myself.

Briefly share one self-care tip that has special meaning to you now.

I take a lot of baths. I also have a daily spiritual practice. I meditate. I study A Course In Miracles. And I have an amazing spiritual community (Celebration Spiritual Center) where I study Prosperity Consciousness.

 

To read all of Eva Yaa Asantewaa’s Artists Reach Out interviews, visit infinitebody.blogspot.com.

 

Top photo courtesy of the artist.