Where is Chalmatia? In the local geopsychic nomenclature, "Chalmatians" are residents of a certain city, Chalmette, in suburban St. Bernard Parish just east of New Orleans. It's a place that bore the brunt of Hurricane Katrina and lost many residents, but in this CAC expo it's more like a state of mind. The work of Louisianian Daneeta Jackson and her Swedish expat partner Patrick Jackson, Chalmatia is a stream of consciousness, word and image narrative that depicts a fictionalized version of "a fractured landscape of broken strip malls, empty lots, and bare cement slabs that once supported a thriving community--a place largely defined by what’s no longer there." Like the Louisiana town in Walker Percy's dystopian novel Love in the Ruins, things have fallen apart here. People get by on nostalgia or make believe as their lives assume mythic qualities.
Chalmatia: A Fictional Place Down the Road: Mixed Media by Daneeta and Patrick Jackson, through Sept. 8, Contemporary Arts Center, 900 Camp St., 528.3805
Weekend Words: Accomplice
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