1619 Flux opened last year. | Photo by Jesse Levesque

More than 12 visual artists and six spoken-word performers are converging at the West Louisville gallery and event space known as 1619 Flux: Art + Activism for an exhibition that’ll explore voices that are often marginalized in our society. “Meet Your Neighbors: Feminine & LGBTQ Perspectives” opens Saturday and will continue throughout the month, featuring several exhibit-related events along the way.

“Is This Where I Come From?” by LaNia Roberts | Courtesy of 1619 Flux

1619 Flux opened last spring as a gallery, community center, event space and nonprofit whose mission is to unite the community and desegregate the city. This exhibit fits squarely into that mission, says artistic director Jesse Levesque.

“The opportunity to do this exhibition comes at a time when the dominant narrative in the U.S. is to squash the voices of minorities — like women and LGBTQ+ people,” she tells Insider. “1619 Flux would like to continue to offer platforms to artists from all backgrounds to unite diverse audiences in our West Louisville space through creative expression.”

The show was co-curated by Levesque, Flux founding director, Kara Nichols, and UofL grad student, Jessica Oberdick, and features artwork in various mediums. Levesque says Oberdick was the catalyst for the show and helped bring some artists on board who had never exhibited at the gallery.

Oberdick included female artists from her master’s thesis exhibit she recently did at UofL’s Hite Art Institute, and they joined a group of artists who were already showing at Flux.

If there’s a common theme to the show, Levesque says it can be found in the title.

“1619 Flux’s overall theme for 2017/2018 is ‘neighborhood revitalization’ and the creative people helping to make this happen,” she explains. “Meeting and accepting artists with feminine and LGBTQ+ perspectives from our neighborhoods is core to revitalizing place.”

The gallery was awarded a grant by the Kentucky Foundation for Women to help with programming for the exhibit, and several events are planned throughout the month. Examples include an installation by artist SK Lockhart, which will begin at Saturday’s open reception, and an art book by Moriah Mudd-Kelly that details the entire exhibition and will be for sale at the gallery.

Art by Ann Dawkins | Courtesy of 1619 Flux

“(We’re) engaged in social practice, which means the programming and connecting conversations that happen during the run of this exhibition are each art pieces in and of themselves, and each event is capable of creating social change in and around 1619 Flux,” says Levesque.

Meet Your Neighbors: Feminine & LGBTQ Perspectives” opens Saturday, Aug. 5, with a free reception from 6-9 p.m. It continues through Sept. 15. 1619 Flux is located at 1619 W. Main St.

Here is a schedule of events associated with the exhibit:

  • Saturday, Aug. 5 — Opening Reception, 6-9 p.m.
  • Wednesday, Aug. 23 — “Connecting Conversations” with J.P. Davis, Fund for the Arts’ VP, and artist Michael Kopp, 5:30-7:30 p.m.
  • Wednesday, Aug. 30 — “An Evening with Spoken Word Artists,” 5:30-7:30 p.m.
  • Wednesday, Sept. 6 — “Connecting Conversations” with “Strange Fruit” host Kahlia Story and artist Hannah Drake, 5:30-7:30 p.m.
  • Friday, Sept. 15 — Closing Reception, 6-9 p.m.

Sara Havens is the Culture Editor at Insider Louisville. She's known around town as the Bar Belle and updates her blog (barbelleblog.com) daily. She's a former editor of LEO Weekly and has written for Playboy and The Alcohol Professor. Havens is the author of two books: "The Bar Belle" and "The Bar Belle Vol. 2."


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