The Limits the Sky by Elan Cadiz

A Solo Exhibition Curated by Atim Annette Oton

October 22 until November 20 2022


The Limits the Sky is a rhetorical idiom created by a Black comedian to exclaim an unjust biased system. The Limits the Sky implies an uncontrollable limitation that existed for Black and Brown people which evoked a sentiment of suffering and surrendering. The need for money but the lack of well paid careers had both of my college educated parents constantly working and stressing over monthly bills leaving my brother and I to take care of ourselves. We were latch-key kids. Without understanding the violence of capitalism, I had begun feeling abandoned and burdensome. My parents’ stress and depression had become mine, just as their parents’ had become theirs and it was my duty to stop the generational trauma that had time traveled within my dna.

For the The Limits the Sky series, I’m playing the role of family researcher, archivist and healer. With the help of my family, I’ve salvaged old family photographs as references for the compositions. I’m documenting and visually exploring childhood stories I grew up hearing and some that I’ve never heard until now. 

In order to support my emotional and mental well being and ensure a better future for my children, I’ve embraced my inner child and allowed her to fearlessly inform this exhibition. My goal was to capture the transient nature of childhood and all the vulnerabilities inherent in it. Moreover, understand my personal histories more intimately in relation to the world I was born into. 

I’ve painted, referenced and documented memories to be seen as the perception and exploration of my past self under these conditions and without the distraction of location. Remembering, much like healing, is ongoing. With the removal of place I’ve had to focus on emotion and shared recollection which contributed to my process of concluding with an universal understanding.

Elan Cadiz
Elan Cadiz is an interdisciplinary North American Visual Artist that deconstructs and balances her intersectionality through her projects. Her art and practice are grounded in the documentation of her personal narrative through the use of historical imagery and the domestic. Cadiz sees herself as a cultural interpreter and visual documentarian. She immerses herself in environments, documenting the familiar and the unfamiliar all the while expressing these inquiries with artworks she create. The artworks created and the materials used are all determined by her experience and interactions with the places and people she comes in contact with, in the present and the past. Elan Cadiz graduated from City College of New York with a BA in Studio Art and received a MFA Fine Arts degree from the School of Visual Arts where she was awarded the SVA Merit Scholarship, Paul Rhodes Memorial Award and the Martha Trevor Award. Cadiz has been commissioned by the Studio Museum in Harlem, El Museo de Barrio, Art in Flux Harlem, Mount Vernon Hotel Museum and more. She was one of the first Sustainable Arts Foundation AIRspace Parent Artist Resident at Abrons Art Center and her An American Family Album series was featured in VOGUE. Her artworks can also be found in New American Paintings magazine, issue #146 and #153.


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