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Exhibit At SUNY Purchase Remembers Eric Garner Who Died During Arrest

A member of the Harlem Needle Arts association working on the piece and the other is the finished piece. Photo Credit: Photo Credit: Jim Frank
A finished piece created by artists from the Harlem Needle Arts cultural arts institute: Sahara Briscoe, Laura R. Gadson, and Jerry Gant, under the direction of Michelle Bishop. Photo Credit: Photo Credit: Jim Frank

PURCHASE, N.Y. -- The Neuberger Museum of Art will have "Teresa Margolles: We Have a Common Thread," an exhibition of the artist's new multimedia work involving the participation of local artist-embroiders and five other pieces on view July 12 through Oct. 11.

Margolles, Neuberger curator Patrice Giasson, and several others headed to Staten Island to the street where Eric Garner died as he was being placed under arrest by a police officer using what was described as a "choke hold."

In preparing for her new work, Margolles dragged a large cloth over the sidewalk where the violence occurred, staining it using a technique she developed to absorb micro-substances. This cloth became the canvas for artist-embroiderers from Harlem Needle Arts .

“The textile is a microphone,” Margolles said, explaining her general approach.

This exhibition continues Margolles’ long exploration of violence. A multimedia artist working in photography, video, sculpture and performance, Margolles has spent the last two decades exploring the socio-political issues related to violent death in Mexico and its impact on the victims’ family, friends, and communities.

She’s addressed the anonymity surrounding hundreds of unidentified bodies in Mexico’s central morgue, the unprecedented violent nature of crimes resulting from that country’s drug war, the massive disappearance of women in Ciudad Juarez, and even messages left behind by those who committed suicide.

In "Teresa Margolles: We Have a Common Thread," all of the works are the result of the artist’s collaboration with native embroiderers from Panamá, Nicaragua, Guatemala, Brazil, Mexico and the United States, all of whom share her concerns about violence, particularly against women.

After explaining her vision for the project, Margolles provided each group with a fabric that had been marked through contact with the bodies of those who had suffered a violent death. She urged the embroiderers to create patterns on the discolored textile as a way of triggering conversation about the violence and social problems plaguing their respective communities.

Born in Culiacán, Mexico in 1963, Margolles is one of Mexico’s leading artists. She was a founder of SEMEFO, the acronym for Servicio Médico Forense (Forensic Medical Service), which commented on social violence through provocative art performances from 1990 to 1999. Margolles holds a degree in forensic medicine.

The museum is at 735 Anderson Hill Road in Purchase. For more information, contact (914) 251-6100 or visit .

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