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SPOOLS is an exhibition of work by Oakland-based artist Nimah Gobir. Drawing from personal memories and artifacts from loved ones, Gobir’s series of oil paintings explore how she is shaped by the known and unknown experiences of those she holds dear. It’s as if each painting is produced in collaboration with her loved ones’ memories.
As a Black, first generation American artist, Gobir’s work documents how she is constantly finding footing as she creates relationships and cultivates community. Whether it’s the way the light hits her partner in a sun-soaked room or her Nigerian mom holding her recently-born sister, Gobir creates portraits that draw on memories spanning decades. While the work in SPOOLS presents past moments, they find new life as Gobir unravels and recontextualizes their impact on who she is today. Several of the paintings in the series use embroidery thread and traditional craft techniques, drawing attention to the time spent handling each stitched work. The textured surfaces from the thread patterns convey tenderness and affection. This new series is inspired by the ephemeral feeling of home, safety, and belonging.
Nimah Gobir is an artist and educator based in Oakland, California. Through paintings and installations, her work primarily explores the nuances and shared experiences of being Black. She draws on text and photo references collected from both family and personal archives.
Gobir completed her undergraduate studies at Chapman University with a B.F.A. in Studio Art and B.A. in Peace Studies. She has an M.Ed from Harvard Graduate School of Education with a focus in Arts in Education. In 2020, she completed a fellowship with Emerging Artist Professionals SF-Bay Area. She has shown work at Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions, SOMArts, The Growlery (San Francisco), Johansson Projects (Oakland) and Root Division (San Francisco) where she was awarded the Blau-Gold Studio/Teaching fellowship.
2300 Telegraph Ave, Oakland CA 94612