The 36th Chamber

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Object Name: 
Wall Panel
The 36th Chamber
Accession Number: 
On Display
Credit Line: 
36th Rakow Commission, purchased with funds from the Juliette K. and Leonard S. Rakow Endowment Fund
Web Description: 
The letter B featured in the center of The 36th Chamber comes from the Supreme Alphabet of the Five Percent Nation, a social movement highly influential in early hip hop that advocated for the pursuit of knowledge. In the Supreme Alphabet, the letter B signifies “to be” or “be born.” For Tecosky, it also represents a range of other words that begin with B, many of which are recorded in the paint on the wall. Like a hip hop album, The 36th Chamber samples several different references. Its title comes from the kung fu movie The 36th Chamber of Shaolin and the Wutang Clan album that it inspired. Central to the movie, the album, and Tecosky’s work is the idea of bringing knowledge to the people. The piece is also the 36th artwork created through the Museum’s prestigious Rakow Commission program.
Primary Description: 
Wall Panel, "The 36th Chamber". Steel armature, colorless, blue, amber, red, dark amethyst (appears black), and orange glass, silver and white enamel, spray paint; blown, hot-sculpted, carved, enameled. Multi-part wall panel consisting of four metal wall mounts supporting nine blown, carved, and enameled glass elements: a transparent amber crown, a transparent blue star, a transparent brownish-red letter "B", a dark amethyst star (appears black), a transparent amber arrow, a transparent brownish-red slightly curved line shape, a transparent amber star, a transparent blue letter "A", and an opaque orange arrow.