In our recent Radio Juxtapoz podcast conversation with Harlem-based painter Khari Turner, he talked extensively about his residency with Iris Project in Venice, California and how he found a breakthrough working there in 2020. There was a profound and new connection he found with water there, not only as a material but almost a spiritual tool. The work is now on view in The Sea's Own Children, Turner's show with Iris and culmination of a year in which his work has made a major leap in terms of conception and execution.  

From the gallery: "Khari Turner’s first solo exhibition with the gallery employs water as a universal connecting force in celebration of contemporary black portraiture. Turner first incorporated ocean water into his practice during his time at the Iris Project Residency in the summer of 2020. Collecting water from the oceans and riverways of his personal history roots his work in the historical and spiritual journeys of black bodies in America. It is Turner’s way to “conceptually talk about masculinity, Blackness, and strength, but also vulnerability and beauty.” Turner uses the collected water to abstract his painted black figures until only the mouth, nose and often hands retain their definition, foregrounding aspects of the black figure often devalued by the Euro-centric art world and western civilization in general."