Crossing The Water
Requiem For Lee Howard Dobbins
January 25 - March 22, 2019
Johnny Coleman (Oberlin, OH)
In Residency: Dec. 10 - Feb. 3
OPENING RECEPTION: January 25, 6PM - 9PM
ON VIEW: 1/25/19 - 3/22/19
Johnny Coleman's immersive environment created during his residency at SPACES, Crossing The Water: Requiem For Lee Howard Dobbins, imagines the passing of the spirit of a formerly enslaved child.
In 1853, Lee Howard Dobbins accompanied his adopted mother and siblings as they fled Kentucky, crossed the Ohi oRiver, and traveled north to reach Canada via Lake Erie. When he fell ill, he was left in the care of an Oberlin family. Two weeks later the four-year-old died among strangers. Neighbors raised funds to bury the child and mark his grave with a granite headstone. His internment in Oberlin served as a marker of local opposition to the institution of slavery, but even that symbol has been forgotten over time.
Crossing The Water: Requiem For Lee Howard Dobbins marks his continued presence. This project is a meditation on an imagined place in which he might have been free.
More about this project:
This project is a part of the SWAP Program.
The SPACES World Artists Program (SWAP) offers residencies to international, national and local artists who explore and experiment. SWAP supports artists in the creation, presentation and discussion of new work, while facilitating opportunities for them to collaborate with artists and audiences in Northeast Ohio.