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Faheem Majeed: Who Takes the Weight

About the Exhibition


Aug 22 – Oct 26, 2019



Faheem Majeed is a builder—literally and metaphorically. A resident of the South Shore neighborhood in Chicago, Majeed transforms materials such as particle board, scrap metal, and billboard remnants, breathing new life into these often overlooked and devalued materials. Synthesizing aspects of making, curating, community organizing, performance, and appropriation, Majeed’s work acts as an entry point into larger questions around civic-mindedness, community activism, and institutional critique. For his first exhibition in Boston, Majeed created two large-scale, site-specific installations in the Grossman and Anderson galleries at SMFA at Tufts, engaging with architectural, institutional, and community histories.

These works take inspiration from the institution-building legacies of Boston cultural icon Ms. Elma Lewis and Chicago artist, educator, and poet Dr. Margaret Burroughs. By asking, “Who takes the weight?”—a reference to a 1972 text by Ms. Lewis—Majeed initiates a listening process to better understand the space and sites we inhabit, the materials we use, and how that “use” and “inhabitation” is differentiated by our positionality—racially, economically, sociopolitically, and geographically. Delving into this history as a social practice and also an intensely material experience, Majeed brings together the studio and the presumptions of community to point to the limits of equity that persist in our cultural institutions. Organized by Abigail Satinsky, Curator.