Steffani Jemison’s Same Time consists of a sound piece and an abstract print. The title refers to the artist’s reprisal of a speech delivered in 1970 by Black Panther Party founder Huey P. Newton that has been reinterpreted by Brooklyn-based R&B group Sidetrack Boyz as a vocal improvisation. By relaying Newton’s words through popular music tropes, the performers reactivate his call for the transformation of American society through direct action and strategic rebellion. The work extends Jemison’s interest in the general condition of transparency and the rhetorical possibilities revealed in repetition.
Building on a practice that places African American history and culture at the intersection of conceptual art, Jemison’s Same Time considers how inherited visual strategies both limit and expand our access to history more broadly.