IT’S IN THE GAME ‘17 or Mirror Gag for Vitrine and Projection grew out of artist Sondra Perry’s conversation with her twin brother, Sandy, about how their experiences in higher education were equally rife with racism, class discrimination, and exploitation. Party to O’Bannon v. NCAA, often called the Likeness Lawsuit, Sandy Perry’s identity as a college basketball player was sold by the NCAA to a video game company without compensating him or his teammates for their likenesses. Recognizing the historical resonances of the theft of Black bodies and labor in the transatlantic slave trade and other colonial violence, Perry compares her brother’s experience to open source 3-D scans of artworks in the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the British Museum. Juxtaposed with family photos, video game clips, and virtual sculptural animations, the siblings chat as they walk through museum galleries. Through these refracted reflections, Perry exposes the colonial histories and racist presence of today’s leisure activities—like video games and museum visits.

Sondra Perry (b. 1986) is an artist working in Perth Amboy, New Jersey. She makes videos and performances that foreground the tools of digital production as a way to critically reflect on new technologies of representation and to remobilize their potential. Perry has presented solo exhibitions in New York’s Times Square, the Kunsthal Aarhus, MoCA Cleveland, the Seattle Art Museum, and the Kitchen in New York. She has participated in numerous group exhibitions at venues including the Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts (2017); Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia (2017); The New Museum, New York (2017); Brooklyn Museum (2016); The Studio Museum in Harlem (2015); and MoMA PS1(2015).

Commissioned by the Henie Onstad Kunstsenter, Oslo (HOK) and the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA), University of Pennsylvania, this exhibition was curated for the Davis by Sonja Novak Koerner '51 Senior Curator of Collections and Assistant Director of Curatorial Affairs Amanda Gilvin with generous funding from The Helyn MacLean Endowed Program Fund for Contemporary and South Asian Art and the Joan Levine Freedman '57 and Richard I. Freedman Gallery Gift. Courtesy of the artist and the Bridget Donahue Gallery.