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A Conversation with Tiona Nekkia McClodden

On March 5, The Whitney Museum honored Tiona Nekkia McClodden, a Philadelphia-based artist with the Bucksbaum Award. The evening began with a conversation with McClodden in the theatre followed by a private dinner in the trustee room.

Adam Weinberg, the Whitney’s director, previously stated that, “McClodden’s work is bold and original and her contribution to the Whitney Biennial is extraordinarily rich with cultural, historical, and spiritual resonances.”

McClodden’s video installation I prayed to the wrong god for you (2019), appeared at the Whitney Biennial in which the artist showed herself carving a fir tree that she herself cut down. The carving is meant as a ritual dedicated to the god Shango, a deity from the Santería/Lucumi religion.

The Whitney Biennial was curated by Rujeko Hockley and Jane Panetta who were also in attendance during the evening. Past winners of the Bucksbaum Award include Pope.L, Zoe Leonard, Mark Bradford, and Michael Asher, among others.

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