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Feb 1, 2018
4:00 pm — 7:00 pm
Dr. M.T. Geoffrey Yeh Gallery, Queens
Open to Public
February 1, 2018 4:00 pm

St. John's University's Dr. M. T. Geoffrey Yeh Gallery presents


January 15- March 14, 2018

The exhibition features twenty artists whose work 

illuminates the concerns expressed by Claudia Rankine in her book of the same title.


As part of the 2018 NEA Big Read grant received by St. John’s for Claudia Rankine’s Citizen: An American Lyric, the gallery is presenting the work of twenty contemporary artists that continues and enriches on Rankine’s unique use of contemporary art as part of her narrative structure.

Citizen is a multifaceted art and literary project programmed and curated by St. John’s University Dr. M. T. Geoffrey Yeh Art Gallery in collaboration with the departments of English and Art and Design, the Queens Public Library, and the borough’s literary community.

Claudia Rankine’s book-length poem has been a publishing phenomenon. Shortlisted for the National Book Award, it “is an anatomy of American racism in the new millennium, a slender, musical book that arrives with the force of a thunderclap.” (Bookforum). In 2016, Rankine received a MacArthur Fellowship.

The exhibition investigates the relentless racism of daily life that renders many “citizens” invisible. The exhibition will be on view from Monday, January 15 through Sunday, March 14, 2018. The public is invited to attend the opening reception on Thursday, February 1 from 4-7 p.m. A musical performance by Assistant Professor Tyreek Jackson will take place at 5:30 p.m.

St. Johns University is one of 75 institutions nationwide participating in the NEA Big Read 2018. During the course of the exhibition, the community will celebrate Citizen: An American Lyric by Claudia Rankine with a full calendar of events, including a key-note address by Yolanda Arroyo Pizarro, a celebrated writer from Puerto Rico.

The full calendar of events can be found at: 

For more information, please contact Yulia Tikhonova at 718-990-7476 or [email protected]