Critical Mass for the Visual Arts

Critical Mass for the Visual Arts is a nonprofit, self-formed visual arts collaborative dedicated to promoting, enhancing and initiating contemporary visual art in the St. Louis region.


5 Questions-Shabez Jamal

Shabez Jamal
Shabez Jamal, Long as I Am Black, C-Print, 2019.

This episode we interviewed Shabez Jamal. Among other topics, Shabez talks about creating visibility for the narratives of queer black folks and others who historically have been excluded from conversations around art, justice, and power. Donny Bradfield (b.1992, St. Louis) better known as Shabez Jamal, is an interdisciplinary artist based in St. Louis Missouri. His work, rooted in still portraiture and experimental video, interrogates physical, political, and social-economical space by using queerness, not as a means of speaking about sexuality, but as a catalyst to challenge varying power relations. Focusing his lens on fat, black, queer, male identified persons, who are often seen as the antithesis to blackness/queerness, his work acts in radically redefining the parameters of racial and sexual identity.

Covid-19 Local Artist Roundtable

On Wednesday April 29 we co-hosted with Midwest Artist Project Services a local artist virtual roundtable via Zoom.The discussion was led by Mallory Nezam and featured panelists Dail Chambers, Pacia Elaine Anderson, Juan William Chavez and Alicia Brown. The audio can be found on the 5 Questions Podcast or at the link above. During the event, Sarah Paulsen captured the conversation with live drawings.

Announcing Creative Stimulus Winners- Yowshien Kuo, Marina Peng, and Janie Stamm!


Critical Mass for the Visual Arts is pleased to announce the winners of the 11th annual Creative Stimulus Award. This year’s selected artists are Yowshien Kuo, Marina Peng and Janie Stamm! All three artists have episodes available (for your listening pleasure) on 5 Questions!

Margaret Keller’s Riverbend Documentary- Public Works

Check out this documentary on Margaret Keller’s Public Works Project: Riverbend from 2018! Margaret writes, “I wanted my artwork to reference the iconic look and architecture of the Arch while expressing the importance of the Missouri River and relating it to the theme of this National Park, as well as offer an exciting experience to viewers. Riverbend highlights and celebrates water, the environment, and especially the Missouri River. Riverbend is about the importance of the Missouri River as the Gateway to the West; it was the route for Lewis and Clark and those who followed. By reflecting everyone on its silver surface, Riverbend includes and recognizes those who were excluded during Westward expansion, such as native Americans and other usurped communities.”