DiverseWorks presents L'esprit de l'escalier


L'esprit de l'escalier is an exhibition featuring works by members of DiverseWorks' Artist Board, including Lucinda Cobley, Jamal Cyrus, Sasha Dela, Lydia Hance, Hank Hancock, Trenton Doyle Hancock, John Harvey, Maria Cristina Jadick, Courtney D. Jones, Eric Leshinsky, Gabriel Martinez, Lynne McCabe, Katrina Moorhead, Gene Morgan, Mari Omori, Aaron Parazette, Robert Pruitt, Leslie Scates, Hélène Schlumberger, Kellye Sanford, Kelly Sears, and Damon Smith, along with collaborators Parham Daghighi, Sandy Ewen, Zach Moser, jhon r. stronks and June Woest.

The exhibition title, a French pun translated idiomatically as "staircase wit," refers to the inevitable situation of finding oneself thinking of the perfect comeback to an argument too late. The retort, when removed from the context of its original instigation, has a tendency to lose its potency leading to incidences of regret and remorse. Through a wide variety of artistic strategies, the DiverseWorks Artist Board grapples with how words, events or objects become dislocated or removed from their original context. The title provides the artists with a loose framework for the creation of new work (or the re-presentation of existing work) for this exhibition, which includes objects, text-works, moving image pieces, as well as a series of performative and literary events.

Highlights include:

  • Opening night performance by Lynne McCabe: a live remembering and rewriting of a feminist performative history
  • An exterior wheat paste mural created by Otabenga Jones & Associates (Jamal Cyrus and Robert A. Pruitt) juxtaposing a police car with Barnett Newman's Broken Obelisk
  • An interactive zine-making station by Gene Morgan and Hank Hancock
  • A series of alabaster objects from Trenton Doyle Hancock's personal collection adorned with phrases about life, love and happiness
  • The re-presentation of Katrina Moorhead's sculptural piece, Donald Judd Box Used As A Shelf for An Adidas Box, 2006
  • A new wall painting by Aaron Parazette

Related Programs and Performances:

  • July 3: Shrimp Boil with Eric Leshinsky and Zach Moser
  • July 10: A long distance conversation between Hélène Schlumberger and Sarah Hotchkiss and Carey Lin of San Francisco's Stairwell's, a curatorial project including a series of temporary exhibitions staged out of traditional gallery spaces and in transitional spaces like stairwells
  • July 17: Sound performance by Damon Smith with Parham Daghighi and Sandy Ewen
  • July 24: Improvisational duo performance by Leslie Scates and jhon r. stronks
  • July 31: Dance duet by Lydia Hance and Courtney D. Jones
  • Aug. 7: Foodie event with John Harvey
  • Aug. 14: Slinging Ink, a live literary war of words



3400 Main St.
Houston, TX 77004


Admission is free.
All events are subject to change due to weather or other concerns. Please check with the venue or organization to ensure an event is taking place as scheduled.