Blood At The Root By EXO:DUS

Art of the Week

Nashville’s Frist Art Museum is now hosting an immersive installation in its courtyard by Nashville artistic duo and married couple Elisheba Israel Mrozik and Aaron Mrozik who, when paired together, go by the moniker EXO:DUS.

The free-to-the-public installation will be open until November 1, 2020 and visitors are expected to experience the piece alone or with one other person in their group to maintain social distance. The Mrozik’s are an interracial couple whose own conversations around racial justice were the inspiration for the project, which features a trailer adorned like an average American household but with some provocative differences. It’s designed as an exploration of how implicit bias can be born and fostered within family households.

“The domestic tableau installed inside of a small trailer features furniture, everyday household items, audio recordings and photographs meant to evoke a typical white middle-class home,” according to a release from Frist. “Close looking reveals that several objects have racist undertones and that the eyes of many figures have been market out by flame-like strokes of white paint, suggesting that the notion of white supremacy is subtly, sometimes even unknowingly, passed from one generation to the next.”

It’s more than likely that some visitors to the exhibition will recognize elements of this domestic recreation in their own lives or from their own upbringings. But at least one member of EXO:DUS plans to be on site at all times to engage visitors with constructive dialogue about their message, elevating what could be seen as an accusatory or unfair comparison into an opportunity for genuine conversation and potential self reflection.

The piece was originally on view over the summer at EXO:DUS’ studio in North Nashville. Frist has decided to host it in its courtyard as a way to engage its visitors in a subject matter that has taken precedent around the country in recent months.

“Current events have deepened the Frist’s commitment to our community and prompted efforts to respond in real time to the shifts taking place,” museum curator Katie Delmex explained in the release.

Elisheba Israel Mrozik and Aaron Mrozik own and operate North Nashville’s One Drop Ink tattoo parlor.

Frist Art Museum is located at 919 Broadway.

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