Basil Kincaid

15 October - 25 November 2021

“I am a Vessel, a Vivid Dreamer, and a World Builder. My work is guided by my connection to ancestral courage and related insights, filtered through observation and expanded by imagination.”

“My quest is to understand the tapestry of my own personal and cultural identity within the African Diaspora, contextualized by the scaffolding of my American experience. I practice self exploration, historical investigation, and critical social questioning to cultivate healing towards a remedy for Post Traumatic Slave Syndrome. My goal is to co-create sites that stimulate the ancestral memory of love as freedom within us, activating space to participate in shared liberation on local and global scales. 

I choose to do so through writing, quilting, collaging, making installations, photographing, performing, and inventing games. Within each of these mediums I promote empathy, curiosity, and critical thought by relocating our attention to new positions so we can see and engage differently. By hanging quilts on the wall, for example, and extracting their utility, I’m able to manipulate their value and the ways they’re read; by employing negative space within my collages, I examine how we can uproot ourselves from contexts or societal readings that do not serve us. In all of my work, I hone in on how place shapes perspective, the notion of belonging, and the way we self-perceive. 

My work is primarily comprised of found or donated materials that bear great emotional significance to those who once enjoyed them. I often source fabric through social media, where people experience physical and personal disconnection from self, all the while observing how waste is reflective of lived experience. It’s this lived experience that I’m most interested in capturing, which is reflected in my interest in quilting. 

Quilting as a practice is saturated on both sides of my family, dating back over 7 generations. This family tradition, among others, has provided a compass towards self-reclamation in the face of contemporary expectations. Quilting, within the black cultural tradition, has always served as a revolutionary space of joy, courage, and community in direct contrast to social and financial subjugation. It’s a way to honor my predecessors while addressing the questions and concerns of where I am – we are – today. It’s a way towards restoring and reconstructing with the resourcefulness born within us.” 

– Basil Kincaid, 2021

Uncle Lord
Cotton, Silk, Velvet, Brocade, Corduroy, Lace, Polyester Thread

Quilt: A Dance to Summon Spring
Cotton, Velvet, Quilted Cotton, Felt, Wool, Corduroy, Cotton Thread on Wall

Self Portrait: At First You Wanted to Be Cool, Now You Want to Be Free / February 21, 2020 / Mink Fur, Clothes From the Artist, Clothes From the Artists brother and father, Preserved Charred Wood from local house fire, found objects, on Wood Panel


Spirit in Transformation / 2019 / Donated Cotton, Wool, Denim, Silk, Velvet, Canvas, Hand Dyed Cotton, Various Materials from my travels in Ghana, Donated Curtains on Wall


The Displaced / 2015 / Found Telecom Scratch Cards Collected in Ghana, Vlisco Fabric, Shoes worn by the Artist, Wire, Metal, Industrial Adhesive, on Fiberglass Mannequin


Self Portrait: I Am Not My Labor / 2019 / Donated Vintage Fabrics, US Currency, Artists old Jacket, Plastic, Cotton, on Floor and Wall

Special Spot / 2019 / Various Donated Fabrics, Silk, Velvet, Cotton, Rugs and Table Cloths from the artists home, Wax Batik from the artist’s travels


About Basil Kincaid

Basil Kincaid (b. 1986, St. Louis, Missouri) is a post-disciplinary artist who explores the fixity of conditioned and self-imposed constructs. Through quilting, collaging, photography, installation and performance–done with found, salvaged and donated materials–Kincaid interrogates social mores while drafting alternative cultural fabrics. With an improvisational and community-oriented approach, resourcefulness and freedom of imagination emerge as critical components in the liberation of spirit. Kincaid studied drawing and painting at Colorado College, graduating in 2010. He has exhibited works with Kavi Gupta Gallery, Mindy Solomon, Kravets Wehby, and Carl Kostyal. Kincaid is part of the JP Morgan permanent art collection and recently debuted their first museum performance, “The Release,” at the Pulitzer Arts Foundation in St.Louis MO. Kincaid is also a 2021 recipient of the United States Artists Fellowship. Kincaid opened a solo show with Galería Leyendecker January. Up next, Milan, where Basil will debut a new body of works with Galleria Poggiali.


Website | Instagram