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East Williamsburg’s Amant Foundation

Rohan Vasa, Writer

The Amant Foundation

The Amant Foundation is a newly opened non-profit arts organization tucked away in East Williamsburg’s warehouse district. It offers exhibitions, public programs, and artist residencies. Now the group is looking to raise attendance. Brooklyn-based architecture firm SO–IL designed the inviting art campus, which spans three city blocks. Visitors find courtyards that weave through exhibitions spaces, a café, and a library.

In addition, Amant has three-month residencies both on the Brooklyn campus and on its property in Siena, Italy. The chosen artists uncover “overlooked narratives.” Amant brings new life to its community by re-thinking the past and considering the potentiality of the future. 

Gala Porras-Kim

Amant’s main exhibition, Precipitation for an Arid Landscape, features work by L.A. artist Gala Porras-Kim. This presentation invites visitors to think about cultural artifacts and how they went from heritage sites to museums and research institutes. The focus is on objects removed from the cenote at Chichén Itza. This sacred place is an ancient Mayan sinkhole in Mexico’s Yucatán peninsula. Porras-Kim considers the spiritual lives of these artifacts. She uses drawings, letters, archival documents, and sculptures to expose their displacement. Poignantly, she questions where these artifacts came from and what their natural purpose was. The artist tries to reactivate these objects through an investigation into the ethics of care surrounding their value. 

Public Programs

In addition to the exhibition, the Amant Foundation also organizes public programs. For instance, on February 19th, Inupiaq poet Joan Naviyuk Kane will read from her book Dark Traffic (2021). On March 10th, Erin Thompson and Pierre Losson will talk about legal issues and politics surrounding ancient objects. The Amant Foundation is changing the arts community of East Williamsburg by supporting work that creates new dialogues. 

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