Ingrid LeFleur’s new art installation, Traveling to Turiya: The Future Mapping Project was the focus of guest’s conversation on Friday at Kalamazoo College’s Arcus Center. People stood around munching on mushroom caps, pierogi, and an assortment of fruit while discussing the new piece.
“Maybe because of the previous piece and it being all words, I feel like I’m trying to read something into this,” Nora Stagner’13 said.
In 2014 the first art installation to command guests’ attention on Arcus Center’s main wall was the piece entitled Stanger Land done by artist Nayda Collazo-Llorens. Arcus Academic Director Lisa Brock said that the first artist Collazo-Lorens introduced the center to the new artist LaFleur.
“Her work is on Afrofuturisms and that’s one of the modules that we’re looking at,” said Brock. “The notion of unlocking the imagination to free oneself, to think about what it takes to be free for people that are oppressed and carrying around trauma.”
The international movement of Afrofuturism is a creative movement that integrates race, science and technology with a focus on analyzing past and present race issues.
“I’m constantly figuring out how to heal the black body,” LaFleur said. “Why? Because the black body is filled with trauma, lots of wounds that keep becoming reopened. So every time we get to a point were we think we could be healed something happens.”
LaFleur takes a similar approach to racial healing as James Baldwin. “The black body can not be healed until all bodies are healed.”
The installation also includes an audio portion that LaFleur composed to accompany the piece. Inspired by Jazz Musicians Alice Coltrane and Sun Ra LaFleur decided to map the future with her piece. “No ones futures can be created until the traumas in the body are healed,” LaFleur said.
Artist and Senior Anja Xheka’13 thought the audio portion helped to complete the piece. “I think listening gives it a sense of space, it roots in the environment created by the sound because it’s very sight specific.”
On 28 different sculptures the installation incorporates 28 different crystals with different shades of blacks, aqua, magenta, and red moss. LaFleur dedicated the installation and her passion for the work to her father.
“His passion in art and art collecting lead me exactly to this path,” LaFleur said. “Also he was a complete hippy and he was all into spirit science and technology so without him I wouldn’t even be thinking about crystals and healing.”
Brock is unsure how long the installation will be on display at the Arcus Center.
“These pieces are never meant to be here forever,” said Brock. “It just depends on what the crystals tell us.”