antoine j girard
antoine is an art historian, curator, and trailblazer. he has built a strong community and platform, fueled by his passion for the arts and social change and amplifies underrepresented voices in the art world. he studied art history during college and has led tours at the broad museum and has been curating for the underground museum. antoine is a leader of our generation, creating a path for others and encouraging them to find their own.
where do you find your inspiration? who is your biggest inspiration?
community. and by that I mean the real life people who make things make sense, the leaders in my life are usually working class everyday people who have real goals tome this world better.
why do you think art is so important today? how do you think art influences social change?
I think art has the absolute ability to change the way people feel about themselves, especially minority people. it can offer us space to reimagine the mundane. I love paulo freire,”theater of the oppressed,” as a means to think about how art or any type of practice can build a muscle for change.
what is something you want your viewers to feel when they experience your work?
I’ve been coined before a social sculptor and what I would want for anyone who is attending my experiences is to feel welcome, seen, and celebrated.
how would you define “success” for an artist/curator/historian?
joy, how much joy you inspire. how can you motivate people to choose happiness in a world bent on making us sink into sadness.
because you have such an influencing platform, do you feel you have a responsibility to represent the POC community?
absolutely, these are my people, how they are presented in the world and respected in art spaces is my life duties.
you’re in the middle of a show at jeffrey deitch gallery (congrats on that!) – what’s next for you? are you working on anything currently?
thank you. my first show, what a moment. and yes! I can’t say yet but more projects similar to what I’ve built out at deitch gallery. there are SO many more artists and stories than I was able to tell in this moment. but I believe in the community. all in divine time, I want to continue building cohorts and collectives to challenge notions of only one successful artist or voice of color at a time. we should all know each other and build horizontally. so yes, my goal is more collective moments through art.
anything you would like to add?
I’ll say this – creatives, anyone reading this. please continue to create. don’t wait for a show to come along or someone to notice. make the opportunity. work toward a light only you can see. that’s happiness, always pure happiness.