Artists Space

Adjua Gargi Nzinga Greaves:
The x in florxal is silent when spoken

March 20 – May 1, 2021

Four books are arranged in the center of a color photograph in a grid-like formation, their edges meeting. Handwritten notations surround the books.
Adjua Gargi Nzinga Greaves, INDEX, 2021, C-trans print mounted on lightbox, 41 1/2 x 41 1/2 x 5 inches [Four books are arranged in the center of a color photograph in a grid-like formation, their edges meeting. Handwritten notations surround the books.]

Emerging on the Northern Hemisphere’s vernal equinox, the works comprising The x in florxal is silent when spoken center the marginalia and material traces of ongoing research inspired by language, machine aesthetics, documentation, systems analysis, radical education, investigative performance art, and Blackness. Functioning as a prologue to Greaves’ The Florxal Review, they augment and emerge from her spacious investigative praxis of ethnobotanical literary criticism in the forms of daily drawings, annotated photographs, collages, and site-specific installations. Greaves asks: “What becomes possible when we begin to center and attempt responses to the slow and silent, active and occluded voices and spirits of the plant life we live alongside? How might what emerges on the page, in our minds, from our mouths, and out of our hearts parallel what we already know? In the futures that follow, what might verdancy feel like to all of Earth’s beings (and to all of cosmos’s material and immaterial bodies) when so-called weeds are on the mantle as well as in the crevices?”

The artist would like to acknowledge the Rauschenberg Residency, where one of the works in this exhibition was printed.

Adjua Gargi Nzinga Greaves writes ethnobotanical literary criticism, and collages detritus into heraldic devices engaging ever expanding networks of reference through the granular analytics of poetic inquiry. She is author of Close Reading as Forestry (Belladonna*, 2017), Of Forests and of Farms: On Faculty and Failure (Ugly Duckling Presse, 2020) and is anthologized in Letters to the Future: Black Women / Radical Writing (Kore Press, 2018). Greaves has most recently been published in The Brooklyn Rail. She performs frequently across a broad spectrum of venues and educational contexts and has begun working with video in response to a Spring 2020 commission from Issue Project Room for their Isolated Field Recording Series. Formerly a Monday Night Reading Series curator at The Poetry Project, site director for Wendy's Subway reading room, and an artist-in-residence at Rauschenberg Residency, Greaves is currently based in New York City where she is Young Mother of The Florxal Review—an emerging platform of literary criticism and network science centering floral language, its instances, applications, implications, and possibilities. In Fall 2021, Greaves will enter the Literary Arts Program at Brown University as a candidate for the MFA in Poetry.

Eight digital prints are hung on a white gallery wall. In front of the wall are three floor-to-ceiling columns.
Adjua Gargi Nzinga Greaves: The x in florxal is silent when spoken. Installation view, Artists Space, 2021. Courtesy Artists Space, New York. Photo: Filip Wolak [Eight digital prints are hung on a white gallery wall. In front of the wall are three floor-to-ceiling columns.]
A photograph of a gallery space with eight prints hung on the rightmost wall and a lightbox mounted on the far wall.
Adjua Gargi Nzinga Greaves: The x in florxal is silent when spoken. Installation view, Artists Space, 2021. Photo: Filip Wolak. Courtesy Artists Space, New York. [A photograph of a gallery space with eight prints hung on the rightmost wall and a lightbox mounted on the far wall.]
A photograph of a gallery space with works on paper hung on the far wall and plants, works on paper, and a collage mounted on the right wall, which is painted pink.
Adjua Gargi Nzinga Greaves: The x in florxal is silent when spoken. Installation view, Artists Space, 2021. Photo: Filip Wolak. Courtesy Artists Space, New York. [A photograph of a gallery space with works on paper hung on the far wall and plants, works on paper, and a collage mounted on the right wall, which is painted pink.]
A gallery wall painted pink with a window in the middle. On the windowsill are several potted plants. Works on paper and a collage are hung on the wall.
Adjua Gargi Nzinga Greaves: The x in florxal is silent when spoken. Installation view, Artists Space, 2021. Photo: Filip Wolak. Courtesy Artists Space, New York. [A gallery wall painted pink with a window in the middle. On the windowsill are several potted plants. Works on paper and a collage are hung on the wall.]
A digital print of four books with annotated notes on each side.
Adjua Gargi Nzinga Greaves, CONTEXT, 2021. Chromogenic print with pigment ink pen, 41 ½ x 41 ½ inches. Courtesy Artists Space, New York. Photo: Filip Wolak [A digital print of four books with annotated notes on each side.]
A digital print of four books with annotations on each side.
Adjua Gargi Nzinga Greaves, SELF, 2021. Chromogenic print with pigment ink pen, 41 ½ x 41 ½ inches. Courtesy Artists Space, New York. Photo: Filip Wolak [A digital print of four books with annotations on each side.]
A photograph of a lightbox, mounted on the wall, of four books with annotations on each side.
Adjua Gargi Nzinga Greaves, INDEX, 2021. C-trans print mounted on lightbox, 41 ½ x 41 ½ x 5 inches. Courtesy Artists Space, New York. Photo: Filip Wolak [A photograph of a lightbox, mounted on the wall, of four books with annotations on each side.]
An inkjet print mounted on a pink wall. The print includes a woman standing behind a desk and in front of several rainbow-colored bookshelves. Above the bookshelves hang several flags.
Adjua Gargi Nzinga Greaves, 1741 Honey Locust, 2020. Inkjet print, 44 x 58 inches. Edition of 2. Courtesy Artists Space, New York. Photo: Filip Wolak [An inkjet print mounted on a pink wall. The print includes a woman standing behind a desk and in front of several rainbow-colored bookshelves. Above the bookshelves hang several flags.]
A collage of eucalyptus sprigs, other plants, and human figures attached to a framed map.
Adjua Gargi Nzinga Greaves, Autotelemachy, 2017. Collage, 59 x 68 inches. Courtesy Artists Space, New York. Photo: Filip Wolak [A collage of eucalyptus sprigs, other plants, and human figures attached to a framed map.]
Magazine pages are arranged in several rows on a white gallery wall. Below the pages is a row of sketches on yellow paper.
Adjua Gargi Nzinga Greaves, Better homes and gardens back by popular demand, 2021. Magazine, artists tape, overall dimensions variable. Courtesy Artists Space, New York. Photo: Filip Wolak [Magazine pages are arranged in several rows on a white gallery wall. Below the pages is a row of sketches on yellow paper.]
A photograph of a print mounted on a pink gallery wall next to wall text. Below the wall text is a table with papers stacked on top.
Adjua Gargi Nzinga Greaves: The x in florxal is silent when spoken. Installation view, Artists Space, 2021. Photo: Filip Wolak. Courtesy Artists Space, New York. [A photograph of a print mounted on a pink gallery wall next to wall text. Below the wall text is a table with papers stacked on top.]
Two prints, of books with annotations written on the side, are hung on a white gallery wall.
Adjua Gargi Nzinga Greaves: The x in florxal is silent when spoken. Installation view, Artists Space, 2021. Photo: Filip Wolak. Courtesy Artists Space, New York. [Two prints, of books with annotations written on the side, are hung on a white gallery wall.]
Potted plants and small figurines sit on the windowsill of a gallery space. Beneath the windowsill are two framed works on paper.
Adjua Gargi Nzinga Greaves, For Aricka, Ayana, Ayodele, Bernice, Chantelle, Charmaine, Cynthia Ch., Cynthia Co., Daphne, Davina, Dawn, Dina, Emily, Erica, Evadne, Frances, Gail, Gwen, Hara, Heather, Imanei, Imani, Janet, Jenny, Kadija, Kahdeidra, kale, Kelly, Kenya (R), LesLes, Lois, Lynnette, Madeleine, Mahogany, Marsha, Maiya, Najela, Nontsi, Ola, Pilar, Queen, RaFia, Ro-Ro, Sandra, Sasha, Serenity, Shana, Simone L, Simone W, Tabitha, Taiyi, Trinity, Uchenna, Vivian, Wangechi, X, Yvette, Zuri, detail, 2021. Living plants: Hannibal (Epipremnum aureum) with rose quartz, Gertrude Deuxieme (Tillandsia xerographica), Leonie (Philodendron totem), Eversley Deuxieme (Tillandsia xerographica), Melford (Epipremnum aureum) with amethyst; dessicated floral matter (eucalyptus, grass, willow, palm), knight on horseback figurine, brass candlesticks, polystyrene, porcelain and 18 karat gold plates, crystals (various), bamboo earrings, jade, cremains, leather, cork, glass, dragon figurine, sandalwood incense and ceramic holder, palo santo (Bursera graveolens), and window, overall dimensions variable. Courtesy Artists SPace, New York. Photo: Filip Wolak [Potted plants and small figurines sit on the windowsill of a gallery space. Beneath the windowsill are two framed works on paper.]
Potted plants and small figurines line the windowsill. Beneath the window are four framed works on paper.
Adjua Gargi Nzinga Greaves, For Aricka, Ayana, Ayodele, Bernice, Chantelle, Charmaine, Cynthia Ch., Cynthia Co., Daphne, Davina, Dawn, Dina, Emily, Erica, Evadne, Frances, Gail, Gwen, Hara, Heather, Imanei, Imani, Janet, Jenny, Kadija, Kahdeidra, kale, Kelly, Kenya (R), LesLes, Lois, Lynnette, Madeleine, Mahogany, Marsha, Maiya, Najela, Nontsi, Ola, Pilar, Queen, RaFia, Ro-Ro, Sandra, Sasha, Serenity, Shana, Simone L, Simone W, Tabitha, Taiyi, Trinity, Uchenna, Vivian, Wangechi, X, Yvette, Zuri, detail, 2021. Living plants: Hannibal (Epipremnum aureum) with rose quartz, Gertrude Deuxieme (Tillandsia xerographica), Leonie (Philodendron totem), Eversley Deuxieme (Tillandsia xerographica), Melford (Epipremnum aureum) with amethyst; dessicated floral matter (eucalyptus, grass, willow, palm), knight on horseback figurine, brass candlesticks, polystyrene, porcelain and 18 karat gold plates, crystals (various), bamboo earrings, jade, cremains, leather, cork, glass, dragon figurine, sandalwood incense and ceramic holder, palo santo (Bursera graveolens), and window, overall dimensions variable. Courtesy Artists SPace, New York. Photo: Filip Wolak [Potted plants and small figurines line the windowsill. Beneath the window are four framed works on paper.]
Potted plants and small figurines line the windowsill. Beneath are four framed works on paper and an empty frame.
Adjua Gargi Nzinga Greaves, For Aricka, Ayana, Ayodele, Bernice, Chantelle, Charmaine, Cynthia Ch., Cynthia Co., Daphne, Davina, Dawn, Dina, Emily, Erica, Evadne, Frances, Gail, Gwen, Hara, Heather, Imanei, Imani, Janet, Jenny, Kadija, Kahdeidra, kale, Kelly, Kenya (R), LesLes, Lois, Lynnette, Madeleine, Mahogany, Marsha, Maiya, Najela, Nontsi, Ola, Pilar, Queen, RaFia, Ro-Ro, Sandra, Sasha, Serenity, Shana, Simone L, Simone W, Tabitha, Taiyi, Trinity, Uchenna, Vivian, Wangechi, X, Yvette, Zuri, detail, 2021. Living plants: Hannibal (Epipremnum aureum) with rose quartz, Gertrude Deuxieme (Tillandsia xerographica), Leonie (Philodendron totem), Eversley Deuxieme (Tillandsia xerographica), Melford (Epipremnum aureum) with amethyst; dessicated floral matter (eucalyptus, grass, willow, palm), knight on horseback figurine, brass candlesticks, polystyrene, porcelain and 18 karat gold plates, crystals (various), bamboo earrings, jade, cremains, leather, cork, glass, dragon figurine, sandalwood incense and ceramic holder, palo santo (Bursera graveolens), and window, overall dimensions variable. Courtesy Artists SPace, New York. Photo: Filip Wolak [Potted plants and small figurines line the windowsill. Beneath are four framed works on paper and an empty frame.]
Partial view of a potted plant and a small figurine of a knight on horseback with a lance.
Adjua Gargi Nzinga Greaves, For Aricka, Ayana, Ayodele, Bernice, Chantelle, Charmaine, Cynthia Ch., Cynthia Co., Daphne, Davina, Dawn, Dina, Emily, Erica, Evadne, Frances, Gail, Gwen, Hara, Heather, Imanei, Imani, Janet, Jenny, Kadija, Kahdeidra, kale, Kelly, Kenya (R), LesLes, Lois, Lynnette, Madeleine, Mahogany, Marsha, Maiya, Najela, Nontsi, Ola, Pilar, Queen, RaFia, Ro-Ro, Sandra, Sasha, Serenity, Shana, Simone L, Simone W, Tabitha, Taiyi, Trinity, Uchenna, Vivian, Wangechi, X, Yvette, Zuri, detail, 2021. Living plants: Hannibal (Epipremnum aureum) with rose quartz, Gertrude Deuxieme (Tillandsia xerographica), Leonie (Philodendron totem), Eversley Deuxieme (Tillandsia xerographica), Melford (Epipremnum aureum) with amethyst; dessicated floral matter (eucalyptus, grass, willow, palm), knight on horseback figurine, brass candlesticks, polystyrene, porcelain and 18 karat gold plates, crystals (various), bamboo earrings, jade, cremains, leather, cork, glass, dragon figurine, sandalwood incense and ceramic holder, palo santo (Bursera graveolens), and window, overall dimensions variable. Courtesy Artists SPace, New York. Photo: Filip Wolak [Partial view of a potted plant and a small figurine of a knight on horseback with a lance.]
A candlestick holder, a small glass box and a plate with rocks and leaves sit on a windowsill.
Adjua Gargi Nzinga Greaves, For Aricka, Ayana, Ayodele, Bernice, Chantelle, Charmaine, Cynthia Ch., Cynthia Co., Daphne, Davina, Dawn, Dina, Emily, Erica, Evadne, Frances, Gail, Gwen, Hara, Heather, Imanei, Imani, Janet, Jenny, Kadija, Kahdeidra, kale, Kelly, Kenya (R), LesLes, Lois, Lynnette, Madeleine, Mahogany, Marsha, Maiya, Najela, Nontsi, Ola, Pilar, Queen, RaFia, Ro-Ro, Sandra, Sasha, Serenity, Shana, Simone L, Simone W, Tabitha, Taiyi, Trinity, Uchenna, Vivian, Wangechi, X, Yvette, Zuri, detail, 2021. Living plants: Hannibal (Epipremnum aureum) with rose quartz, Gertrude Deuxieme (Tillandsia xerographica), Leonie (Philodendron totem), Eversley Deuxieme (Tillandsia xerographica), Melford (Epipremnum aureum) with amethyst; dessicated floral matter (eucalyptus, grass, willow, palm), knight on horseback figurine, brass candlesticks, polystyrene, porcelain and 18 karat gold plates, crystals (various), bamboo earrings, jade, cremains, leather, cork, glass, dragon figurine, sandalwood incense and ceramic holder, palo santo (Bursera graveolens), and window, overall dimensions variable. Courtesy Artists SPace, New York. Photo: Filip Wolak [A candlestick holder, a small glass box and a plate with rocks and leaves sit on a windowsill.]
A collage with a woman
Adjua Gargi Nzinga Greaves, Autotelemachy, detail, 2017. Collage, 59 x 68 inches. Courtesy Artists Space, New York. Photo: Filip Wolak [A collage with a woman's figure in profile attached to a framed map, mounted on a pink gallery wall.]
A photograph of several works on yellow paper hung on a white gallery wall.
Adjua Gargi Nzinga Greaves, Better homes and gardens back by popular demand, detail, 2021. Magazine, artists tape, overall dimensions variable. Courtesy Artists Space, New York. Photo: Filip Wolak [A photograph of several works on yellow paper hung on a white gallery wall.]
A photograph of three works on yellow paper hung on a white wall.
Adjua Gargi Nzinga Greaves, Better homes and gardens back by popular demand, detail, 2021. Magazine, artists tape, overall dimensions variable. Courtesy Artists Space, New York. Photo: Filip Wolak [A photograph of three works on yellow paper hung on a white wall.]

Support is provided by Lambent Foundation Fund of Tides Foundation, The Cowles Charitable Trust, The Cy Twombly Foundation, The David Teiger Foundation, The Helen Frankenthaler Foundation, The Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation, The New York Community Trust, The New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, The New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, Robert Rauschenberg Foundation, The Stavros Niarchos Foundation, The Willem de Kooning Foundation, The Danielson Foundation, The Fox Aarons Foundation, Herman Goldman Foundation, The Destina Foundation, The Luce Foundation, May and Samuel Rudin Family Foundation, The Milton and Sally Avery Arts Foundation, VIA Art Fund, Arison Arts Foundation, The Chicago Community Fund, The David Rockefeller Fund, The Jacques and Natasha Gelman Foundation, The Jill and Peter Kraus Foundation, The Richard Pousette-Dart Foundation.