New Exhibition and Arts Convention Coming to JCAL

  • January 4, 2024

Jamaica Center for Arts and Learning (JCAL) is set to present Parables of the Unknown: The Art of Sci-Fi, Fantasy, and Horror, an innovative exhibition curated and conceived by JCAL's Program Associate Zachary Frater. This open call exhibit showcases various ways in which sci-fi, fantasy, and horror influence and inform contemporary art. The exhibition will run from January 19th to March 1st, opening with a reception on January 19th at JCAL (161-04 Jamaica Avenue) from 6 pm to 8 pm. 

Parables of the Unknown: The Art of Sci-Fi, Fantasy, and Horror features the work of fifteen creative artists. Whether expressed through painting, sculpture, video or comic books, the artwork on display will show how artists use popular culture to construct their own private universes and deliver subtle social commentary.

The exhibition will coincide with the first ever “JCon”, a free sci-fi/fantasy/horror convention at JCAL. The two-day event will feature an artist market with a wide range of local vendors, live commissions, workshops, artist talks, and more. JCon will take place on February 3rd and February 17th, from 12 pm to 6 pm on both days.

Parables of the Unknown: The Art of Sci-Fi, Fantasy, and Horror features work by Khaila Batts, Atiya Brockington, Janet Bruesselbach, Areta Buk, Emily Chen, Paul Deo, Heather Dunn, Issa Ibrahim, Matt Johnson, David Marini, Marleen Moise, Omar Olivera, Christopher Spinelli, Tabitha Theogene, and Rute Ventura.

About the curator: Zachary Frater is a queer, Jamaican-American curator, performer, and writer whose interdisciplinary practice consistently centers BIIPOC and LGBTQ+ contemporary artists. Born and raised on the Upper West Side, Zach has called Queens home since 2020. After receiving his B.A. in Art History from the City College of New York, Zach went on to organize art exhibitions, drag pageants, talk shows and open mics at both commercial and community spaces throughout the city. Zach was the Queer|Art|Mentorship Curatorial Fellow from 2014 to 2015 and has held positions at various community arts organizations such as BX200, Materials for the Arts, Visual AIDS and the City College Center for the Arts. Zach is the Visual Arts Program Associate at Jamaica Center for Arts and Learning.