NOT Supposed 2-Be Here: Tulane’s latest art installation

Haley Soares, Arcade Editor

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Maggie Pasterz | Staff Photographer
Interactive multimedia exhibit NOT Supposed 2-Be Here comes to Tulane

What issupposed’ to be here? Brandan “BMike” Odums forces us to think critically about what does and does not belong in an art museum with his installation titled “NOT Supposed 2-Be Here.”

Opening this past weekend at the Newcomb Art Museum, “NOT Supposed 2-Be Here” is the first solo museum exhibition for this iconic New Orleans artist. His work is widely recognizable around New Orleans, with several art installations and graffiti projects spanning the city. 

This multimedia exhibit, featuring everything from digital art and sculptures to his famed graffiti-style murals, is highly political in nature. It focuses on themes of Blackness in America, depicting struggle, resistance and resilience through the artwork. All the while, the collection forces the audience to examine the place of Black artists within the art community.

This is not surprising, as Odums has dedicated himself not only to his artwork but to leading a life of activism. One of his most notable projects within New Orleans is “Project BE,” a collaborative work wherein he graffitied an abandoned housing project in the lower Ninth Ward, commenting on the neglect of this area as well as attempting to send a message of hope to local residents.

At the exhibit’s opening this weekend, hundreds of students and New Orleans residents alike flocked to the art museum to catch a first peek of the art and get a chance to hear from the artist himself.

If you missed the opening of this exhibit, don’t fret. “NOT Supposed 2-Be Here” will be open to the public at the Newcomb Art Museum located in Woldenberg Art Center from now until May 23. The museum will also be hosting a series of free events open to the public, including talks from museum curators and academics. 

Even if you’ve already had the chance to check out the exhibit, you may be craving more from Odums. Thankfully, his work is not limited to the Newcomb Art Museum. Odums has worked on various projects across New Orleans, and you can find more of his art at Studio BE or Exhibit BE, both containing multitudes of impressive work by this artist.