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AMBROSE MURRAY (B. 1996, Asheville, NC)
AMBROSE MURRAY (B. 1996, Asheville, NC)
AMBROSE MURRAY (B. 1996, Asheville, NC)
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AMBROSE MURRAY (B. 1996, Asheville, NC)

Violet Shadows/Iris Studies No. 3 

AMBROSE MURRAY (B. 1996, Asheville, NC)
Violet Shadows/Iris Studies No. 3 
hand-embroidered with the artist's signature (on the reverse)
Acrylic on paper, sequins, embroidered denim and various textiles sewn on canvas, overlain by hand-dyed silk organza. Not stretched. Framed. 
Unframed: 18 x 15 in. (45.7 x 38.1 cm.)
Framed: 24 x 21 in. (61 x 53.3 cm.)
Executed in 2020.


Brought to you by

Celine Cunha
Celine Cunha

Lot Essay

Ambrose Murray is an emerging artist from Western North Carolina. They are a self-taught painter and seamstress who received their BA in African-American Studies from Yale College in 2018, concentrating in arts & culture. They have extensive experience as a teaching artist working with youth and in-community and recently completed a year-long residency at the Mississippi Center for Cultural Production. Ambrose was a 2014 Presidential Scholar in the Arts.

My current works are large-scale collages. I assemble them by deconstructing and then reconstructing my own paintings of faces, bodies, plants and animals with layers of fabric and miscellaneous materials. Many images come to me in dreams or daydreams. My process is an exploration of our bodies and land as sites of historical memory and mystical/imaginative potential. The act of making through collage becomes a process to imagine and visualize the complex layers and depth of story that live within our bodies. Through processes that deepen my relationship to my materials, texture and color, my practice becomes a space to physically re-member and reconstruct the stories and relationships that have been pulled apart and dismembered across generations. Each piece holds a unique story and relationship to my own healing.

I think of these studies as small dreamscapes, a peek into a violet underworld, a small window through the thin veil that separates the spirit world from the physical world. Each of my works are spiritual in nature and are assisting me to build a praxis dedicated to protecting and uplifting my people and our access to resources. 

BA in African-American Studies, Yale College, New Haven, CT (2018)
Studied at Central Saint Martins, BA Fine Art program, London, UK (2016)

Artist-in-Residence, Fountainhead Residency, Miami, FL (July 2020)
“Young Artists: One” exhibition curated by James Bartlett (founder of Open Art) at Fridman Gallery in New York, NY (July - Sept 2020)
In-State Resident Artist, Mississippi Museum of Art, Jackson, MS (2019)
Inaugural Artist-in-Residence, Mississippi Center for Cultural Production in Utica, MS (2018-19)
“Black at Yale” arts exhibition curated by Elizabeth Spenst and Gerald Sheffield at Afro-American Cultural Center at Yale, New Haven, CT (2017)
Presidential Scholar in the Arts exhibition at the Smithsonian Institute and the Kennedy Center, Washington, D.C. (2014)

Ambrose Murray
Pronouns She/They
Instagram @ambrosia_the_nectar
Website www.lianaambrosemurray.com

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