Inliquid Projects

Symbolic Speech, Freedom of Expression

David Deakin
Johnny Everyman
Cheryl Harper

Painted Bride Art Center
230 Vine Street, Philadelphia

April 3 – May 16, 2015
First Friday receptions: April 3 and May 1, 5-7pm

InLiquid presents Symbolic Speech, Freedom of Expression, a group show featuring the work of two artists and a collective at the Painted Bride Art Center. In light of recent world events and the upcoming mayoral and presidential elections, InLiquid’s artist members David Deakin, Cheryl Harper, and the collective Johnny Everyman will present works addressing political topics and themes concerning Philadelphia and beyond through various mediums, including digital prints, painting, and mixed media. This exhibition is part of InLiquid’s Art For Action program—an expansion of our 2013 Juvenile In Justice project (winner of the 2014 PNC Arts Alive Award for Innovation in Honor of Peggy Amsterdam)—that uses art exhibitions as a platform for dialogue, community events, and social awareness efforts.

David Deakin holds a BA from Muhlenberg College and has studies at Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Skowhegan School of Painting & Sculpture (Skowhegan, Maine), and San Francisco City College. He has exhibited widely in the Philadelphia and San Francisco areas, including Albright College, Hamilton College, Muhlenberg College, Cheltenham Art Center, E.T.A.G.E. Gallery, Locks Gallery, Wharton School, Source Gallery (San Francisco), and Post Science Fair One (San Francisco). The main theme behind much of Deakin’s work reflects the idea of first principles—concepts such as time, being, space, and identity. He found that how we frame those first principles to arrive at perceptions of ourselves, our society, our culture, our history, and our planet was the most compelling question. The works in this exhibition display Deakin’s ruminations upon the state of the nation.

Johnny Everyman is an artist collective working under this pseudonym so as to keep anonymity in order to provide a platform from which to communicate clear of any assumptions or political repercussions. As Everyman states, “In a world that is haunted by dark shadows whose nefarious actions are not well reported in the mainstream media, nor well understood in popular consciousness, the truth that shapes our lives is hidden behind a veil of propaganda. In this situation, to make art that is innocent of political content is to step behind that veil, to be blinded by it. But to step out and take a stand can have its price.” This collective works and lives in the US, and uses their art to reflect on current events, political themes, and popular culture.

Cheryl Harper grew up in upstate New York and has lived in the Philadelphia region for over 30 years. Her education includes graduate work in Art History as well as a BFA from Tyler School of Art and a MFA from the University of Delaware. She brings her interest in biography and social issues to her work, documenting the foibles of American politics and society through her unique artistic voice. Harper has been included in many national and international shows, and she was a Fleisher Challenge winner in 2008 and was awarded first prize in sculpture in Art of the State in 2008. Her recent solo show at the James Oliver Gallery received considerable critical attention from the “Philadelphia Inquirer,” “Knight Arts,” and “Art Blog.”