Strange Taxi, Stretched
January 14 – May 19, 2020
Isabella Stweart Gardner Musem
The institution's press release follows:
Lorraine O’Grady’s piece for the Anne H. Fitzpatrick Façade is an adaptation of one of two autobiographical photomontages made by O’Grady in 1991: The Strange Taxi: or From Africa to Jamaica to Boston in 200 Years and The Fir-Palm, to depict and clarify her New England and Caribbean heritages. In both the original and the stretched versions of The Strange Taxi, female members of O’Grady’s family—her mother, Lena, second from left, and three maternal and paternal aunts—emerge through the roof of a New England mansion to show black women escaping from the limitations placed on them in post-World War I Boston. In the stretched version of The Strange Taxi for the Gardner, O’Grady was able to double the height of the sky above them, metaphorically giving the women (and their descendants) expanded room to grow.