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Pace Live

I See You Across That Water

Act II of Torkwase Dyson's "I Can Drink the Distance: Plantationocene in 2 Acts"

Act II of Torkwase Dyson's two-act performance and sculptural installation, I Can Drink the Distance: Plantationocene in 2 Acts, featuring Shani Ha, Deja Smith, Arthur Jafa, and Gaika.

Event Details

Torkwase Dyson
I Can Drink the Distance: Plantationocene in 2 Acts
Act II: I See You Across That Water

Friday, Nov 22
8 PM

*This event is free and open to the public, but space is limited and RSVP is required.

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Pace Live
540 West 25th Street
Seventh Floor
New York

A co-presentation by Pace Live and Performa


Torkwase Dyson
I Can See the Distance: Plantationocene in 2 Acts
Nov 19 – 22, 2019
Learn More

Torkwase Dyson

Torkwase Dyson describes herself as a painter working across multiple mediums to explore the continuity between ecology, infrastructure, and architecture. Examining environmental racism as well as the history and future of back spatial liberation strategies, Dyson’s abstract works grapple with the ways in which space is perceived and negotiated, particularly by black and brown bodies. In 2019, Dyson’s solo exhibition I Can Drink the Distance was on view at The Cooper Union, New York, and her work was also presented at the Sharjah Biennial. In addition to participating in group exhibitions at the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art, Washington, D.C.; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; The Museum of Modern Art, New York; and California African American Museum, Los Angeles, Dyson has had solo exhibitions and installations at Colby College Museum of Art, Waterville, Maine; Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts, Chicago; Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education, Philadelphia; and Suzanne Lemberg Usdan Gallery, Bennington College, Vermont.

Arthur Jafa

Arthur Jafa is an artist, film director, cinematographer, and theorist whose work examines African-American culture and experience. In the 1990s, he developed films with directors Spike Lee, Stanley Kubrick, and Julie Dash, winning the Sundance Film Festival’s Best Cinematography award for Daughters of the Dust. His other commercial work includes Solange’s music videos “Cranes in the Sky” and “Don’t Touch My Hair” as well as Jay-Z’s music video “4:44.” In 2016, Jafa participated in the Hammer Museum’s biennial Made in L.A., where he exhibited more than two hundred binders of found imagery focusing on the construction of black subjectivity. That same year, his video Love is the Message, The Message is Death became a widely acclaimed sensation for its poignant montage of clips capturing American society’s contradictory attitudes toward blackness. Addressing race relations through the problematic of empathy, Jafa’s subsequent video The White Album received the Golden Lion at the 2019 Venice Biennale.

Deja Smith

Deja Smith is an Emmy Award nominated makeup artist, who began her professional life in dance performance by training at Venettes Cultural Workshop and Long Island High School for the Arts. During this time, she received a regional NAACP ACT-SO award and continued her studies at the famed Alvin Ailey School, Joffrey Ballet School, and Dance Theater of Harlem as a scholarship recipient. While obtaining her BFA in dance performance at Southern Methodist University, she performed many choreographic works including those of Jose Limon, Larry White, August Bournonville and Sabrina Madison-Cannon. When Deja made a milestone decision to embark on the journey of gender Transition, she changed careers, becoming an A-list celebrity makeup artist. Her work was featured on the red carpet and television programs as well as in editorial publications and films. Her client roster includes Laverne Cox, Kehinde Wiley, Jill Scott and, most recently, the cast of POSE on the FX network. She is also the co-owner of the concierge hair and makeup team, DDPRO, which specializes in providing glam experiences for LGBTQ+ focused projects and community members.


Gaika is a musician, rapper, and writer from South London, whose debut album, Basic Volume, was released in 2018 by Warp Records. He describes his sound as “ghettofuturism,” a type of experimental R&B fusing Caribbean dancehall tradition with electronic music, grunge, and grime. Seeking to push the boundaries of British black music, his videos challenge stereotypes of black masculinity while his lyrics respond to a broad range of social issues and histories, from British colonialism and the immigrant experience to gentrification and police brutality.

  • Pace Live — Torkwase Dyson, Act II: I See You Across That Water, Nov 22, 2019