Kevin Beasley conceived Untitled (Sea) after discovering a cast-off garment flattened against the ground on a Harlem street. He obtained many such housedresses in various colors and patterns from Harlem retailers, opened the seams of the garments, sewed together a number of them, and doused them with a malleable resin. Beasley manipulated the material around a mold only until it hardened, producing a luminous surface of drapes that at once conceals and reveals the hollow space behind it. Suggesting the persistence of the garments’ absent wearers, the work invites viewers to imagine other lives and the shapes they assume—“the ghosts of Harlem floating on the walls,” as the artist puts it.
Gallery label from Inbox: Kevin Beasley, 2016.