Louisiana artist Phoenix Savage's sculptures are mixed media with an emphasis on the use of the African Lost Wax Technique employed to cast metal sculptures. Each sculpture in the exhibition is made of cast iron as homage to enslaved Africans who toiled on Iron Plantations of the Antebellum South.
Nearly 30 of the sculptures are arranged in a manner to suggest floating spirits, suspended from the gallery walls. They are titled with the names of a deceased person, such as Huddie Leadbetter, Betsey Head, Steven Biko, Thomas Jones, and Charles Savage , the great , great, great grandfather of the artist, who himself was an enslaved carpenter in North Carolina.
The ancestor sculptures guard the central sculpture in the exhibition, a prayer device entitled Mojo. The 8 foot circular sculpture is made of 16 cast iron lids turned upside down . Mojo, represents the world in a state of balanced flux. Each lid is perched on a steel rod, much like a spinning plate and is embedded with the ancient markings of the West African Yoruba religion. Mojo calls to mind the grave decorations of the Congo, and North American Sea Islands. Just as one would visit the site of the deceased, gain inspiration, or clean the grave sites, a common practice in New Orleans, the exhibition entitled Phoenix Savage, invites the viewer to recall and respond to the gifts and memories of the dead.