MICHELLE CORPORAN

Re:Manifest

Re:Manifest as conceived by the 2023 Ann Street Gallery Emerging Artist Fellows aims to challenge the romanticized histories of the United States and make evident the artists’ voices, stories, and visions. The works in Re:Manifest exhibit (re-)emergences of cultural identity informed by the nuanced perspectives of the Fellowship cohort and how they identify their personal lineages. Through their fellowships Rachel Olivia Berg (Mnicoujou Lakota), Michelle Corporan (Afro-Caribbean, Spanish, and Japanese lineages), and Shani Richards (Afro-American) unearth historical events, honor their ancestors, and explore places in the Hudson Valley to reclaim narratives that have been overlooked, forgotten, or ignored.  

Michelle Corporan’s fellowship project focuses on historical spaces that served as crucial stations on the Underground Railroad in Newburgh and surrounding counties in the Hudson Valley. Michelle highlights the aura of these landscapes by working with Sumi-e ink, sounds, and other historical materials to lend a sense of significance and reverence and to invite viewers to reflect on the importance of these historical narratives. 

Henry Ward Beecher tunnel (inside)

Henry Ward Beecher tunnel (inside)

Sumi-ink on rice paper 20" x 30" x 1" Matted
The tunnel connected with MacGregory Brook.

Henry Ward Beecher tunnel (outside)

Henry Ward Beecher tunnel (outside)

Sumi-ink on rice paper 20" x 30" x 1" Matted
The tunnel connected with MacGregory Brook.

Alsdorf’s Farm

Alsdorf’s Farm

Sumi-ink on rice paper 18" x 24” x 1”
George Alsdorf was freed by his Dutch slave master in 1827 and was given a plot of land to run his farm. Through farming, George was able to save up funds to purchase a home in Newburgh, New York where he provided a crucial safe station for runaways running north.

The Ramapo Pass

The Ramapo Pass

Sumi-ink on rice paper 59” x 32.5”
Suffern, entrance to the Ramapo gap. A route between New York City and tand Rockland County as an alternative route up north on land. Today it is Route 17 and the NY State Thruway.

The Erie Railroad toward Chester

The Erie railroad towards Chester

Sumi-ink on rice paper 24” x 30” x .5”
Erie Railroad was one of the main escape routes in the network of the underground railroad, and a switch point from Pennsylvania to New York, connecting runaways up north.

Brooks, creeks and rivers

Brooks, Creeks and Rivers

Sumi-ink on rice paper 32” x 26”
Many bodies of water were used as conduits on the underground railroad that would help runaways continue up north toward Canada.

North River

North River

Sumi-ink on rice paper 29.5 x 16 inches
The Hudson River painting, North River, was named Nortie River by Dutch settlers in the mid-17th century before it would become the Hudson River in the mid-1800s. In the early 17th century, the entire watercourse was named the North River by the Dutch colonial empire; by the early 18th century, the term fell out of general use for most of the river's 300+ mile course.

Earth, Guided.

Duration: 4:58
Depiction of audio and visual montage of the earth in its presence at the time and of the visions runaway slaves viewed on their journey to freedom.