Internal Environments: Marcus Manganni

Trotter&Sholer is pleased to present Internal Environments, a solo exhibition by Marcus Manganni that explores the significant role architecture and light plays within the physical and social aspects of the American value system.


As an artist, Manganni was able to draw on his lived experience with the carceral system to make work that compels the viewer to wrestle with their own ideologies and relationships to existing social constructs. Utilizing light reflection, refraction, and sun mapping, techniques he first developed in solitary confinement, Manganni’s work bends the natural world and deliberately reforms the spaces his work occupies. His central installation, One Glass Brick One Thousand Times is a continuation of this sun mapping practice. One Glass Brick One Thousand Times uses both synthetic and natural light to highlight the role art can have in the liberation of space.


Manganni’s series, Blue, Bluer, and Bluest, is based on architecturally identical windows found in American institutions including Harvard and MSP Florence, a prison in Colorado. These institutions stand as representations of the larger structure of power and influence. Thethree sculptures highlight, expose, and blur our perception of the American value systems. By placing these windows in a gallery space, an arguably institutional space itself, Manganni is posing questions. What and who do we deem valuable? What do we invest in? What do we discard? What is our own role in the existing social systems?


While Manganni’s works are made with architectural grade acrylic, vinyl coatings, and steel - ultimately natural light is the central medium. His newest works address the punitive role synthetic light has played within his lived experience. Through his translation of natural and synthetic light and its interaction with his sculptures, Manganni redefines his relationship with weaponized institutional lighting and challenges his viewers to think about light and space in a new way.


Using a two-tiered system, A Geometric Self mimics and abstracts prison architecture. Dictated by its exterior confinement within the sculpture is an internal reflective environment. This work addresses and re-informs notions of aesthetics and public perceptions of beauty.


Through his work as an activist and artist he is able to inform and provide a broader perspective to the general public. Internal Environments builds on the restorative justice-focused art practice he has been developing for years.


Internal Environments will be on view at 168 Suffolk Street from May 9th through June 22th, 2024.