Yossi Milo Gallery Announces Representation of Shikeith

Yossi Milo Gallery is pleased to announce representation of Shikeith. The artist’s premiere exhibition at the gallery will open in 2022.

Shikeith creates dreamlike spaces that oscillate between the sacred and the profane, exploring nuance and depth within the psychological landscape of queerness. His practice is thoroughly interdisciplinary, often combining film, sculpture, and photography into immersive installations. Across these different media, the physical body frequently emerges as a site of possibility: skin beads with sweat, blue-fleshed figures engage in acts of intimacy, jaws hang wide with tongues lolling in ecstasy, and eyes flutter shut, sealed in contemplation.

Shikeith is also attentive to the cultural histories that construct identity, even subconsciously, in Black gay men — from the sonic history of blues music to specific bodies of water, such as the Atlantic Ocean and the Middle Passage. This conceptual framework informs the sculptural materials used by the artist, such as a distinct “haint blue” from the Southern Gullah tradition of creating crushed indigo pigment to ward off evil spirits. Through this joint practice of portrait photography and figurative sculptural work, Shikeith weaves a complex expression of Black queer interiority. “There is this long history of the dark being a place where possibility can emerge,” Shikeith says. “That’s my stomping ground and I have to trust that, to wander with the wonder in order to create the art I am making today.”

Shikeith received his MFA in Sculpture from Yale University after earning his BA in Integrative Arts from Pennsylvania State University. A solo exhibition of Shikeith’s work is currently on view at the Mattress Factory Museum of Contemporary Art in Pittsburgh, PA, through June 13, 2021. His work has also been presented at the Museum of Contemporary Art Cleveland; Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Bentonville, AR; California African American Museum, Los Angeles, CA; and The Aperture Foundation, New York, NY, among others. He is the recipient of the 2019 Painters & Sculptors Grant from the Joan Mitchell Foundation, the 2020 Art Matters Foundation Grant, and the 2020-2021 Leslie Lohman Museum Artist Fellowship. The artist was born in Philadelphia, PA, and currently lives and works in Pittsburgh, PA.