ABOUT

My name is Lewis (LOUISE) Derogene and my moniker is PhenomenaLewis. 

I am a Haitian-born multimedia artist based in between Connecticut and New York, an alumni the School of Visual Arts where I received my BFA in Fine Arts in 2019. 

I use photography, performance art, drawing, sculpture, installation art, video art and poetry to speak on the Black experience and how that is influenced by spirituality, sociology, politics, psychology and other factors that contribute to being human. My self portrait photographs being self reflective as an obvious statement is also a representation of being a soft Black woman as a direct attack against the Strong Black woman trope.

One of my main visual inspirations is South African photographer and painter Zanele Muholi. They photograph themselves in isolated manners to bring complete focus to their face with either elaborate or simple decors adorning them. Another one of my visual inspirations is Dutch painter Rembrandt who used chiaroscuro in his paintings to direct his viewers eyes.

Another inspiration of mine is Immanuel Kant and his philosophy on the sublime. I extracted this quote from an article written on WordPress, “Kant describes the sublime as a feeling that arises when we are aware of divine experiences – or what he calls a priori knowledge: universal validity, independent of experience.” With this ideology in mind, my self portraits embody this where viewers may not know directly what my images are about, they feel a strong sense of serenity. 

I label myself as Afro Cogitatio, a term that I coined in 2020–afro being rooted from and being a descendant of Africa and cogitatio being the latin word for any thoughts, meditations, or reflections and I use this term as a guide when I create art.

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Selected Group Shows

2022

 

 - Inner Dialogue: Preview in New York, NY at the Home Gallery curated by The Honey Pump

Healing & Hope in New York, NY curated by Dodji Gbedemah

2021

Groop Sho in Brooklyn, NY curated by Raina Mehler

- Juneteenth: A Celebration of Black Art, Identity, and Freedom in Brooklyn, NY curated by We Roam Freely

- THP:Beacon at Satellite Art Club in Brooklyn, NY curated by The Honey Pump

2020

Beyond Beauty: the ideal form at Mad Lab in Norwalk, CT curated by Lewis Derogene

Bathing In Blackness at SoMad Gallery in New York, NY curated by Kamra Sadia Hakim

LIC LIVE ART at Plaxal gallery parking lot, Land Island City, NY curated by Furusho von Puttkammer

2019

- Veiled art show in New York, NY curated by Sophy Chang, Anna Stallone, and Lewis Derogene

- Satellite Art Show at the Pfizer Building in New York, NY curated by Brian Whiteley

- GI Portal in Governor’s Island, NY curated by 4Heads

- Conception Art Show in New York, NY curated by the Conception Art Team

Open Studios in New York, NY curated by SVA's BFA Fine Arts Department

2018

Open Studios in New York, NY curated by SVA's BFA Fine Arts Department

Fridge Art Fair - New York, NY curated by Eric Ginsburg and Amanda Acosta 

2017

- Eclectic Zone - V-Spot Organic in New York, NY curated by Rey Naldo

- ARE - WE - MORE - The living Gallery Outpost in New York, NY curated by Lewis Derogene, Steven Drake, Haley Peacock and Vieno James

- We Dream In Color - Fantasy in Color (gallery) in New York, NY curated by Christy Ayala and Rob Ayala

- Planet X - The NYC Grind (gallery) in New York, NY curated by Santana and Safiel Vonay

- We Dream In Color - Fantasy in Color (gallery) in New York, NY curated by Christy Ayala and Rob Ayala

- Salutation Vineyard - The Powell State Building in New York, NY curated by Anthony Burton

- Genius Loves Company Remix - The Powell State Building in New York, NY curated by Gregory Mills

- Genius Loves Company - The Powell State Building in New York, NY curated by Gregory Mills

- Black History Month exhibition - SVA's Student Center, New York, NY curated by Cullen Rude and Maria Rovira-McCune

2014

- Street Seats - downtown Stamford, CT curated by Stamford Town Center

- Norwalk Community College High School Art Invitational - Academic Festival in Norwalk, CT curated by Norwalk Community College