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Delano Dunn

The Arts

BMAC hosts online presentation on African American foodways, art, culinary heritage

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BRATTLEBORO—Artists Delano Dunn and Susan Luss, baker Megan Sway, and Dunn’s mother, Diane Mangle, will work together (virtually) to make pies, discuss African American foodways, and eat, as the old Creoles used to say, “melt-in-your-mouth deliciousness.”

Presented by the Brattleboro Museum & Art Center (BMAC), “Pâte Brisée: A Conversation with Four Pies,” will take place on Thursday, July 29, at 7:30 p.m.

This unusual online event is offered in connection with the exhibit “Delano Dunn: Novelties,” on view at BMAC through Oct. 11. The presenters, hailing from different regions in the U.S., will make pies that represent their respective culinary heritage.

As they bake together, Dunn, Luss, Sway, and Mangle will discuss their memories and associations with pie and other foods that have special meaning to them.

“Delano Dunn: Novelties,” the artist’s first solo museum show, “brings together two bodies of work that explore love, racial identity, family history, and the experience of making art during quarantine,” as described in a news release from the museum.

The first series, “Paradise,” incorporates collaged elements from several sources, including Walt Disney’s 1947 “Uncle Remus Stories,” which are widely viewed as racist today. “Roux,” the second collection, explores issues of cultural appropriation via the artist’s tightly guarded family culinary traditions.

Through painting, mixed media, and collage, Dunn “explores questions of racial identity and perception in various contexts, ranging from the personal to the political, and drawing on his experience growing up in South Central [Los Angeles],” as described by the museum.

Luss, an interdisciplinary artist living in New York City, works with a range of found and other materials.

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Originally published in The Commons issue #623 (Wednesday, July 28, 2021). This story appeared on page B4.

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