EXPRESSWAY
Work by Becca Hopkins curated by Mia Loia

Exhibit dates: June 4th – July 17th, 2021

Opening reception: Friday, June 4th, 5:00 – 8:00PM

Open Studios: June 10th, 5:00 – 8:00PM

Location: Gallery 1056

The immensity and artificiality of the Septima P. Clark Expressway stands in jarring contrast with the soft and settled 19th and early 20th century homes around it. It is an alien and alienating landscape that interrupted the human ebb-and-flow of mid-century Charleston. 

Created to serve the commuting needs of white suburbanites, the Expressway carved through a tight-knit predominantly Black community, displacing approximately 150 residences and businesses in its path. Ironically, it was later named after one of the leading figures of the Civil Rights movements during the 20th century. 

Drawing on this history and conversations with local activists, as well as the artist’s position as a public servant, Becca Hopkins painted EXPRESSWAYas a visual exploration of the Septima P. Clark Expressway. She uses watercolor because of its fluidity and dreaminess soften the hard edges of the concrete, asphalt and steel landscape. Charlestonians live with water, making the medium all the more appropriate to describe sunny, dry days, rain and puddles, and the significant floodwaters left over from a downpour.

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